2016 Mercedes-Benz A-Class Update Brings 280kW For A45 Flagship Photo:
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Tony O'Kane | Jun, 28 2015 | 9 Comments

Details on Mercedes-Benz's refreshed entry-level A-Class range have been officially released, and while some upgrades are mild, the headline news is a whopping 15kW power hike for the A 45 flagship.

That brings the Mercedes-AMG A 45's total output to a heady 280kW, making it the most powerful small hatchback you can buy from a showroom. Torque output increases too, with the 2016 A 45 churning out 475Nm - 25Nm more than before.

The result is a 0.4 second reduction in the A 45's 0-100km/h sprint time, which drops to a brisk 4.2 seconds. Gear ratios, suspension calibration and transmission calibration have also been tweaked to both improve performance as well as driveability.

There is, however, still no official mention of the 294kW 'S' model that was rumoured two weeks ago.

But while the A 45 arguably hogs the spotlight, the rest of the A-Class range has seen some significant changes too.

Like the A 45, there are new bumpers front and rear, new headlamps (including optional LED headlamps, a first for the A-Class), new trim and upholstery choices plus a fresh set of wheel designs.

Seat cushion depth adjustment has been added to all models, allowing the squab length to be adjusted by up to 60mm.

The infotainment display has been increased in size to 8 inches on higher-specced models (others will get a 7-inch display), while the 2016 A-Class range will be the first Mercedes product line to feature Apple CarPlay and Mirrorlink smartphone mirroring systems.

The A-Class family has grown with the addition of a new base model, with the 75kW A160 petrol joining the range. Both the A220d and A250 Sport receive a 5kW power hike too, taking peak output to 130kW and 160kW respectively.

Oh, that's another change. As part of Benz's wider nomenclature rejig, diesel models now get a "d" suffix rather than the current "CDI" badge, while petrol models get no suffix at all.

Speaking of diesels, the new fuel economy star of the range is the A180d BlueEffiency Edition.

Able to run on as little as 3.5 litres of diesel per 100km, the A180d BlueEfficiency boasts hybrid-rivalling fuel economy and CO2 emissions of just 89g/km.

For Australia, expect the A-Class range to feature a similar structure. The new A160 is too underpowered for this market, but expect the A180, A200, A200d and A250 Sport to continue - along with the A 45, of course.

What's less clear is whether Mercedes will bring the new manual and 4Matic AWD versions of the popular A250 Sport, or only continue to offer the FWD version.

Power and torque outputs for the A180, A200 and A200d are unchanged, but transmission and engine refinements see fuel use and acceleration times drop.

On the combined cycle, the A180 and A200 use 5.1 l/100km, while the A200d sips just 3.8 l/100km. All are around half a second faster to 100km/h than before.

Another change for 2016 is the addition of Benz's "Dynamic Select" drive mode system, which is standard on all models and allows the driver to switch between Comfort, Sport and Eco modes for the engine, transmission and steering.

A fourth mode, Individual, enables each facet to be changed on its own, while models with sports suspension packages also gain the ability to adjust damping force via Dynamic Select.

All A-Class models will also benefit from autonomous emergency braking, which can reduce the severity of an impact if it detects an impending collision.

Official local launch timing for the 2016 A-Class range has yet to be announced, but expect to see it land here sometime in the fourth quarter. Pricing and exact specifications will be revealed closer to launch.

MORE: Mercedes-Benz | A-Class | Prestige

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