One of the things I’ve always found remarkable about Top Gear (apart from being one of the most awesome motoring shows on the planet) is their secret-keeping abilities. Specifically, their ability to keep the identity of the Stig a secret. Companies across the world go to all sorts of lengths to maintain corporate/trade secrecy and automakers are no strangers to the game. Except that more than a few of them are slipping.
In the past few months, it would seem that automotive spies across the world have gotten a lot better at finding out the latest sheetmetal. Even the Lamborghini Veneno was revealed in a Czech auto publication just before its Geneva debut. And now, one of the latest offerings from Mercedes has been uncloaked before its New York International Auto Show official release. Not that it would have been too hard to imagine what AMG would have cooked up for the new Mercedes-Benz CLA45…
The CLA is already destined to be a gorgeous car. Featuring swooping angles from front emblem to trunk badge, the latest sedan/coupe from Mercedes-Benz hacks through the air with a precise German drag co-efficient of 0.22.
Eager to maintain that drag co-efficient (for comparison, the latest iteration of the Toyota Prius has a Cd of 0.25), Mercedes has really applied the subtlety theme across the CLA45 AMG. Looking at the side profile above, there are few, if any, additional aerodynamic features to interrupt the stock CLA’s bodylines.
However, we can clearly expect upgraded brakes (as evidenced everywhere) to handle the power of the transplanted 2.0L turbocharged four-banger from the A45 AMG. With Mercedes claiming it to be the most powerful production series turbocharged engine in the world, the powerplant will push out 360HP and generate 332 lbs-ft of torque.
While those figures will propel the AWD A45 AMG from 0-62MPH in a little under 4.6 seconds, we can’t help but imagine that in the larger (and heavier) CLA45 AMG that those times will be lengthened. On top of that, the A45 AMG’s 7-speed dual-clutch transmission and stability control system are also carried over to the CLA45 AMG.
Not that platform sharing is anything new (just ask any drifter about the compatibility of other Nissan parts with their 240 beater), but to be honest, we expected a little more out of a tuning house like AMG. To us, this is a clear sign of increasingly difficult-to-meet environmental regulations taking their toll. As Jeremy Clarkson describes to us in the intro to Forza Motorsport 4, “we [the automotive enthusiast] are a dying breed”.
In the meantime, we have to wonder how Lamborghini goes around meeting those environmental regulations. Maybe they’re factoring in the zero emissions produced by their bicycles…
Fortunately, the CLA45 AMG is still slated to reach an electronically limited top speed of 155MPH and being powered by the engine with the highest-horsepower-per-liter in its segment, will still have that dirty dirty AMG soundtrack. And if these pictures offer any further detail, it looks like the car will remain a hoot to hoon around in.