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info on local launch of a45, due late 2013, 

 

http://www.themotorreport.com.au/55938/mercedes-benz-a45-amg-unveiled-australian-debut-set-for-late-2013

 

265kw and 450Nm to do 0-100 4.6 sec, and 6.9L/100km

 

as that review says,

"So, depending on how you measure it, the A 45 AMG could prove to be one of the most mental hot hatches ever to roll out of a factory and onto a public road. Legally."

 

price ~$80k or $30k up from the a250 this article says,

http://theage.drive.com.au/motor-news/mercedesbenz-reveals-hot-new-a45-amg-hatchback-20130213-2ebsj.html

 

Now THAT is an interesting Merc. Defintely one to short list. Hopefully, they can match the Lexus reliability.

 

"Front-drive cars are for children."  Friedrich Eichlers AMG

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few external shots,         the grill is an absolute thing of beauty and love the big propeller up the front  

thanks guys ! we just came back from a drive in the hills. first chance I got to stretch it legs. its a really nice cruiser. and handles the winding and twisting bits very nicely. I gave it a couple o

so what are these cars like in use ? when talking about ergonomics, practicality, creature comforts economy etc... As far as ergonomics goes, both are similar on the surface, ie both with your typica

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder!

 

In Aus we are paying far  too much for certain cars. I would love too be in the UK for example.

 

As a GTi owner I am now thinking about the stock 250.

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when hyundia said they would have a hot hatch on way....for some reason I thought golf gti competiton. errr . scratch that,

 


 

this one in the i30 sr version is more luke warm double decaf non fat soy latte... :lol:
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I must say that new Volvo  V40 T5 doesn't look half bad. Pity that it only comes in Automatic.

 

http://smh.drive.com.au/motor-news/new-car-review-volvo-v40-t5-rdesign-20130219-2ep9e.html

 

my main stumbling block would be its a volvo. not sure could get over that. but yeah looks pretty good I reckon. especially the T5-R which is main golf gti or merc a250 competitor. one real pity on the volvos is their auto's are slush boxes. the deal to use the ford dual clutch transmissions must have fallen through. pity.

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That merc looks like a real weapon!

Al, Hyundai are also bringing the RWD Genesis coupe to OZ, manual and 6 cylinder engine.

If priced competitively (aka Toyota 86), could be a winner. Would be faster than the Golf, not sure about the rest though.

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my main stumbling block would be its a volvo. not sure could get over that. but yeah looks pretty good I reckon. especially the T5-R which is main golf gti or merc a250 competitor. one real pity on the volvos is their auto's are slush boxes. the deal to use the ford dual clutch transmissions must have fallen through. pity.

 

True re the Volvo auto, but you soon adapt your driving to it. I use the tiptronic in my C30 T5-R and you just learn to shift 1sec before you should/would. It doesn't slow you down when you're getting into it. I wouldn't hesitate to get a V40 except that there's no power improvement over mine.

 

Big fan of the A45 though, can't wait to drive a mate's when his order lands (Sept apparently). He's already got the plates to match (AMG-A45)!!

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True re the Volvo auto, but you soon adapt your driving to it. I use the tiptronic in my C30 T5-R and you just learn to shift 1sec before you should/would. It doesn't slow you down when you're getting into it. I wouldn't hesitate to get a V40 except that there's no power improvement over mine.

 

Big fan of the A45 though, can't wait to drive a mate's when his order lands (Sept apparently). He's already got the plates to match (AMG-A45)!!

 

Bloody volvo driver!  :P

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Invite in hand, off to see (and hopefully drive) the A Class this arvo  :D 

 

..and back.

Very impressed. Drove the 200 petrol with sports pack. Standard 1.8 turbo engine. Very responsive. A delight to drive.

Had a look at the range. The 250 front grill is a too garish for my liking. I would be changing that if going for the 250.

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good to read your impressions wol. I've run out of time this week but am hoping to get around to the dealer next for a drive :) I love the grill on the a250 myself :D

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Pics from the A Class showcasing today. I don't think it is all it could have been. While build quality esp the interior is definitely a notch or three above the Golf, Boot space and rear seat space/height is limited esp compared to the Golf. I'm only 5'8 tall but managed to hit my head getting into the backseat and it has less boot space than even the Golf R (whose boot space is mainly taken up by the Haldex controller). It also comes with an electric handbrake (so does the new Boxster/Cayman) -  a crap development IMO.

 

 

Drive away price is around $55K for the A250- which is really the Golf GTI's direct competitor (155kw 0-100 in 6.6secs). VW will have to drop their prices to compete as the A250 has what looks like bigger brakes - although they could have been part of the AMG package which adds a lot more to the $55K d/w price. The one in the pics is $66K driveaway (a tad too much IMO for a 2 litre hatch) - fully optioned with sunroof, AMG kit, etc, etc - I didn't take note of all the extras.

 


 

I would still buy the GTI from a practical standpoint if I was a family person. The lack of bootspace and limited rear seat space (going to be difficult for mothers trying to get child seats in the back) would really kill it for many buyers as practicality is what the GTI is all about - a "sports car" you can use on a daily basis. They didn't have one to test drive so I cannot comment on the driving dynamics.

 

Personally, I was both impressed and repelled by the interior of the A250. While I really liked the superb quality, I really hated the round retro air vents which are a hark back to the Merc air vents of their 70s cars. Typical Merc garishness. 

Edited by triode12
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good feedback from the launch there triode, pity didnt get to test drive, 

 

also read below a post from local aussie perspective test driving the a250 and comparing to the gti

 

 

I took one for a really good run today and must say it was better than I imagined. No comparison to the gti, grip levels were outstanding. Throwing it around the usual run that pushes the gti to near it's limit, the a250 just held it's line with barely a squeek from the tyres. TBH, it blew me away how tenaciously it hung on. S mode transforms it, and better gear change timing than the gti. However, not as snappy with thise changes as I'd like it. Do love the blip as it changes down though, sounds great. Incredibly quiet on the highway which is nice. Ride is firm but damped, no nasty jolts and no harshness. Seats are the best I've sat in for me, and after numerous bike crashes, my back is pretty well shattered, so very sensitive to seat comfort. 

Hitting the hills showed up the big torque, it pulls really hard. It's also really obvious at highway speed overtaking -feels much more like chipped mk6gti. It could do with another 40kw, but watching how quickly the speed rises, I suspect it's quicker than it feels. Also with smoother gear changes you lose some of the effect. 

At the end of the day it's a very nice place to spend time and is going to give a whole lot fun through the twisties.

Anyway, it sold me just on it's handling and ride 9/10 - so I confirmed my order. Now just have to a few months

 

I really cant wait to test drive, hopefully next week even though its a crazy busy week for me ! :(

Edited by :) al
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I'm not so sure that the market that Merc are hoping to steal from the GTI are going to be judging the A250 the same way as we do Al.

 

The enthusiasts only make up a small portion of the market. A lot of market is made up of people with families that want a practical car they can use during the week and one they can "fang" on the weekends (even then, they probably won't be coming even close to the A250's abilities). I'm sure the A250 fulfils the latter but as for the former requirement...I am not so sure. As to whether the Merc badge and reputation for quality is able to tip the scales in their favour and make these people overlook the lack of practical space(and pony up the extra $$)...we will have to wait and see. IMO, the Golf still has it beat in the practicality/versatility department (VW has to rethink their pricing strategy for sure - I predict lower prices for the Golf range).

 

Merc seems to have sacrificed the rear seat and boot space in favour of a longer front end  (they have put the battery in the rear under the boot to balance the weight of the car out - which seems like a silly move). It also comes with run flats and no saver spare. Replacing tyres will be an expensive exercise. Run flats don't come cheap. 

Edited by triode12
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yeah am sure we have all different needs. ticked the box for me in the practicality side though, have sat in back of both a250 and a200 and was pleasantly suprised in rear space back there  and also peaked in the boots, there not the largest but overall no probs there for me and would serve for us family car with two small kids as does the golf. but yeah realise others need much more cavernous spaces, a friend of ours for instance looking at a kluger or territory or even the cx9 because of space they want with two growing kids.

 

so far no probs with me on the overall package, but yeah how drives and handles still keen to experinece 1st hand. agree with you most never push these kind of cars to limits theyre capable off, put myself in that category as well. but yeah do add a fun factor these cars in overall experience so hope that carries over to the merc as have  found in the gti last few years :)

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a250 isnt using run flats for australian spec. confirmed that first hand. this is for australia only though. overseas versions eg for eu/uk do get run flats though so will see mention in some overseas reviews :)

Edited by :) al
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finally drove the a250,

 

I am very pleased. my worries was ride, but I have to say have no idea what some press are on about. because I found it just right. firm enough you do feel the road. and so you should on a hot hatch. but not harsh not hard. with comments read I was expecting it to be crashing and banging, my teeth chattering and a sore back after it. but nothing like that. Didnt find it that different in comfort to my mk6 golf gti. ride was well controlled and took it on a nice drive on a back road and felt great.

 

few things really noticed. you sit low in this car. vs the golf gti where sit higher. Got comfortable pretty easily and quickly in the merc. Its a more refined car than the golf. the gti is more gruff which some might like ?

 

definitely a difference in eco, sport and manual modes. eco for just cruising, sport for all the upshifts downshifts it does and manual if want more control.

 

I liked that there is an ECO button just to switch the start stop system on/off. excellent unlike the alfa guilietta which there is no way to switch off. works well too.

 

the self park is an absolute beauty. very impressed and wife is going to love that !

 

didnt find huge difference in rear view vs the golf. the rear window is tinted so a bit darker looking through but because both golf and merc have large rear head rests didnt find hugely different looking in the rear mirror of the merc. Perhaps something get more handle off in more extended use. but the rear camera of the merc is a pretty handy thing too I must say. 

 

the electric park is a very smart thing. like how it self over rides.

 

one thing realy found myself missing is looking for the gear selector hehe and that have to use the stalk on the steering wheel instead. will definitely take some getting used to 

 

iphone no probs works through bluetooth am told. also a connector in centre console for an ipod so can plug one in there for music permanently as I do now.

 

the large sunroof gives a nice airy feel. with powered shade blind if needed

 

one thing for sure driving this car is really feels technology wise to be a step forward from my golf gti even though that car only 3 years old. its a great driving environment overall where feel comfortable and secure. and yet I think fits the mould well of the golf gti of everyday daily drive that can add a bit of fun factor when needed 

 

ps my car has just landed at the dealership as well. great to see in the flesh ! the red lip of the a250 am very pleased blends in well with the red duco. now the wait for my lease on the golf gti to finish !
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one thing realy found myself missing is looking for the gear selector hehe and that have to use the stalk on the steering wheel instead. will definitely take some getting used to 

 

Thats a deal breaker.

 

Does it come with a bench seat as well?

 

I think we will see more of these on the roads than Commodores. It will be like the old BMW 318i, the one with big plastic bumpers everywhere. Set the BMW brand back 20 years
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Great stuff, Al. Good to hear your positive impressions.

 

 

thanks wol was great to finally drive it. and loved every minute :)

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Seems like it could be OK if you don't need space and flexibility in terms of carrying gear around.

 

The various road tests I have read also mention that the car has a lot of squeaks and rattles,which is very disappointing in a Benz. I am sure its a hoot to drive but I could never own a car that had extraneous noises of all kinds in 5.1 surround squeak, creak and rattle.

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Great news Al

 

happy to read you are happy with it

 

ENJOY

 

thanks John ! so far so good. now just the wait to pick it up. damn the wait is killing me too especially now driven it hehe

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It seems that the gearbox selector was a common source of problems or failure for the previous generation of the A class, so I doubt that you would miss it all that much.

Edited by LHC
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A45 AMG already on the aussie website allowing for registration of interest. merc is not wasting any time ! 

 


 


and looks like command and exclusive plus the driving assistance package as standard for a45. all of which are options on the a250. one thing will say merc are doing a great job of up specing their models as standard as go up in the range :)

 

 
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The new A class just launched in Singapore so I had a look. 

 

Like in Australia, the A250 Sport by AMG is priced almost the same as the VW GTI Mk6 (the SG spec for the GTI is very quite extensive, including 18" Detroit/35th Edition rims, front/rear parking sensors, bixenon, sunroof, RNS510, Keyless Entry/Start, Vienna Leather, Adaptive Chassis Control). 

 

The A250 Sport adds park assist and RVC, but forgoes satnav as standard. 

 

I have to say, the gear stalk wasn't as terrible as I thought. It's more "toggle" rather actual gear levers and seems to work quite well in practice. 

 

I still wish they'd use the rotary knob on Jaguars or buttons like the Astons but this isn't so bad.

 

The boot seemed smaller than the Mk7s but really it's not unusable. The back seat legroom was quite decent but at 6" tall, I did find the headroom a bit small and claustrophobic especially with the big sports bucket type front seats blocking out the view of the front. But for small kids, I am sure it's more than enough.

 

 

Edited by DoggieHowser
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doggie your right its not  gear shift just a toggle and yeah like yourself its not something that I had a bother with  :)

 

interesting to hear singapore pricing is same as the golf gti mk 6 there.

 

got a call from the lease company theyre still doing paper work ! never know might even be able to get a250 before my gtis lease end. but not holding my breath ! 

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I spied a new A Class the other day. SWMBO put it succintly:

 

"Yuk, it looks like one of those awful BMWs (the '1' series).

 

I have to agree. I hope it's a nice drive, because it is a most unnattractive vehicle.

 

Still and all, when you're inside it, you don't have to look at the ugly outside. Win-win.

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I've seen quite a few on the roads now. I'm surprised that people are able to buy them so quickly after launch. If it was VW, they'd be waiting a year.

 

Having said that, I still think from an aesthetic POV, the Scirocco still has the edge over the A250, as the A250 tends to get lost in traffic - the current B-class looks very similar. They aren't as distinctive looking as the rocco is. 

 

So if you want something that makes heads turn, then I'd still go with the Scirocco. The A250 IMO, is a tad too pedestrian looking.

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Actually I think the Scirocco is showing its age more. With the 1.4T and 2.0T engines, they are everywhere in Singapore and have been for a whole. It is just that VW Australia took so long to release it. Can't believe it still doesn't have led tail lights on the R model.

The A250Sport looks more edgy though it may possibly date more easily.

The nice thing about VW is because the designs are evolutionary, having a new model out doesn't cause the old one to look dated or old. The V still looks fresh on the outside today even if the interior is worse for wear.

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That is the thing, they are distinctive over here as you don't see that many on the roads and I am in Sydney. I don't see how it is showing it's age either. Still looks pretty fresh to me.

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