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Merc’s GLA gets the AMG treatment
This is Mercedes GLA 45 AMG Concept, a sporty SUV that’s just been unveiled at the LA Motor Show. In fact, you might as well scrub off the ‘Concept’ moniker, as production GLA 45s have already been seen pounding round the Nurburgring. This thing is happening. Next year.
It’s powered by the same 2.0-litre, turbo four-cylinder found in the A45 and CLA45 AMG - the GLA sits on the same platform as the A-Class, remember. That means 355bhp and 331lb ft of the twisty stuff, fed to Merc’s front-biased 4WD through a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox. All wired up, we’re expecting a 0-62mph sprint in less than five seconds.
On the outside, the GLA45 looks like the aftermath of a major explosion in AMG’s decal department. Fair to say that, with those 21-inch wheels, red-rimmed skirts, aprons and whopping spoiler, you’re unlikely to miss it going down the road. Especially if it sounds as good as its AMG brethren.
The production GLA 45 AMG will squeeze neatly between the 305bhp Audi RSQ3 - a car that, in truth, fails to do sporty or comfortable particularly well - and the just-announced 400bhp Porsche Macan Turbo. We suspect the latter may offer rather stiffer competition than the former, though the Merc should weigh in somewhat cheaper than the £59k range-topping Macan.
So, on a big day for hot German SUVs, which hot German SUV is floating your hot German SUV boat?