It took Mercedes-Benz a while to introduce their first ever compact SUV, the GLA, in our market but they didn't waste any time to bring the AMG version of it. Now, when the standard GLA is being acknowledged all around, Mercedes has also come with their renowned AMG version of this SUV exclusively for those performance enthusiasts who wish to go maniacal with this baby Mercedes. In this article, we tell you which AMG characteristics differentiate this car from the standard version and make it exclusive.
Powertrain and Performance:
Keeping the compact dimensions of the GLA in mind, Mercedes has equipped its AMG version with their popular 1991cc turbocharged petrol engine of the CLA45 AMG. This in-line 4-cylinder engine is capable of producing a power output of 355bhp with a peak torque output of 450Nm which ranges between 2250-5000rpm. Not long ago, this motor was the most powerful 4-cylinder engine in the world before Volvo came up with their E-Motor. Still, the specifications are capable enough to bring the best out of this new SUV. The GLA45 AMG sprints from 0-100 kph in only 4.8 seconds taking all performance doubts away from your mind. This SUV comes with an electronically limited top speed of 250 kph.
This engine is coupled with AMG SPEEDSHIFT 7-speed automatic transmission which supplies power to the all wheels as the GLA45 AMG comes standard with the AMG performance 4MATIC all wheel drive system. This auto transmission can be used in three different modes and with an option of paddle shifters depending upon the driving conditions. The engine itself is quite enjoyable with a burst of power coming forth from 2000 rpm onwards. The half throttle responses make overtaking quite easy and give you a wide power band to play with on highways. To enhance the driving dynamics, Mercedes has equipped this SUV with a sporty AMG suspension setup, steering wheel and braking system. The stiffer springs and damping setup makes it quite a performer at high speeds while the 19 inch wheels bring the much needed stability around corners. However, there is still some body roll while cornering but that doesn't bother you much until you turn sharply at high speeds. The braking system also does its duty well and brings this SUV under control whenever required.
Build and Styling
There are subtle but smart changes made to the exterior of this car which sets apart this AMG version from the standard GLA. At the front, the face looks quite familiar thanks to its headlights with daytime running LED lights and bonnet but, the AMG styled front apron with splitter and new front grille gives this car a new identity. The front apron and the twin blade radiator grille of the GLA45 AMG comes in titanium grey finish which enhances the sporty appearance of the car. The AMG lettering in the radiator grille also makes it look distinctive. Move to the side and you will notice the red coloured brake callipers peeking out of its low profiled 19 inch wheels.
The titanium grey finish continues at the back as well as you can notice the new diffuser in its rear bumper integrated with chrome finished quad exhaust pipes at the back making it look aesthetic. To bring the exterior sporty feel inside, Mercedes has incorporated a new 3 spoke multifunction steering wheel, front seats, seat belts with contrasting red coloured stitching which surely add to the sporty aura inside. Furthermore, the 7 inch screen greets the driver with AMG start-up as soon you enter in it. You can also notice the AMG instrument panel with brushed aluminium finish adding visual freshness to this car. As far as features are concerned, the GLA45 AMG gets 7 airbags, ABS with EBD, brake assist, three stage ESP, traction control, a panoramic sunroof, COMAND Online with satellite navigation, speed limit assist, parking assist, attention assist and the Pre-Safe system.
Priced at INR 70.90 lakhs (ex-showroom, Delhi), the GLA45 AMG is currently one of the most affordable AMG versions of any Mercedes-Benz in India. Yes, the GLA45 AMG is not a proper SUV, but it is nothing short of it when you take it for a spin. Keeping the fact in mind that this car is especially meant for first time AMG owners, this one fits the bill perfectly as it offers the characteristic styling, features and performance of the AMG brand.
Words: Nitesh Sharma