Mercedes has wasted no time in getting to work on a hotter version of the GLA
This GLA45 AMG is expected to produce 355bhp
Power will come from a 2.0-litre turbocharged engine driving all four wheels
A seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox is also likely to be used
This test mule was spotted testing at the Nürburgring
The GLA45 AMG is set to rival the Range Rover Evoque RS
Drivers can expect a 0-60mph time of well under 5.0sec
A taller body is likely to blunt performance compared to the A45
That said, the GLA45 AMG is still expected to be a very quick mover
A possible Black Series version of the car is also on the cards
The biggest engineering challenge for that will be extracting more power from the engine
The engine in the GLA45 AMG is already developing 177bhp per litre
The GLA is a low-rise crossover expected to take on the likes of the Range Rover Evoque
A 200bhp per litre target for the Black Series version of the GLA has been set
Ensuring that engine output can be achieved could present reliability problems
Previously, a heavily camouflaged version of the standard car had been seen undergoing testing at the Nurburgring
Mercedes has also been seen testing Black Series versions of the GLA
Mercedes has wasted no time in getting to work on a high-power AMG version of its yet-to-be-launched GLA low-rise crossover, with the new model expected to use the same drivetrain as the A45 AMG hatchback.
That means a 355bhp 2.0-litre turbocharged engine driving all four wheels through a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.
The taller body, greater frontal area and high ride height is likely to slightly blunt the GLA AMG’s performance compared with the A45, but expect a 0-60mph time of well under 5.0sec. Land Rover’s hot Evoque, likely to be badged RS, is unlikely to be as powerful as the performance-focused GLA.
Mercedes is also testing a Black Series version of the A45 AMG. It is marked out by slightly wider wheel arches on a prototype that otherwise looks close to the ‘standard’ AMG version.
The biggest challenge for engineers involved in building a Black Series version will be extracting more power from the car’s 2.0-litre engine. In the A45, it is already developing 177bhp per litre.
Ford revealed that it managed to extract 220bhp from its 1.0-litre EcoBoost engine during testing, so a 200bhp per litre target - or 400bhp for the A45 Black Series - is not impossible. But ensuring such an output can be achieved from an engine that remains reliable enough for series production will be no mean engineering feat.