RAC Cars News


Mercedes celebrates F1 win with limited edition A Class

By raccars Published

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Mercedes-AMG is planning a new special edition of the A Class to celebrate its success at this year's Formula One championship.

Among the features distinguishing the A45 Petronas 2015 World Champion Edition is a special Formula One themed livery in silver and petrol green, while its racy genesis is also evident from the athletic looking front end with its large splitter and an aggressive rear wing on the roof.

The Silver Arrows A Class

Three different paint colours are available - all grey, while a set of cross spoke 19 inch alloys come as standard. These are also grey with green detailing to the flange. Performance seats with leather and microfibre upholstery feature the distinctive petrol green top stitching and Silver Arrows stripes, while co-ordinating trim elements can also be found decorating the dashboard. A sporty steering wheel is topped by a marker to emphasise the Formula One heritage while extra goodies include the night package and the AMG Dynamic Plus and AMG Exclusive Plus packages.

However apart from the cosmetics, it's the same A45 underneath; a petrol engine with 2.0 litres, four cylinders, a dual clutch seven speed transmission and four wheel drive. That means 376bhp - a very hot hatch indeed. It gets to 62mph in 4.2 seconds, quicker than the Audi RS3, and is a very sharp drive. It's ferociously fast but tenacious and should feel stable to drive, with a mature and balanced power delivery. Early indications are that it is in fact a delight to drive, comfortable and well weighted in the corners and with an eagerness on the straight that would gladden the heart of any boy racer.

The Mercedes-AMG badge ensures solidity of build and a certain degree of opulence in the interior, despite the racy pedigree. Among a number of limited editions, the A45 Petronas 2015 World Champion Edition is certainly bold and memorable and Mercedes-AMG's undoubted dominance of the current F1 scene is echoed in its performance.

Mercedes-AMG was showing the new special edition at Abu Dhabi at the weekend for the last race of the 2015 F1 season, with order books set to open in January. The A45 Petronas 2015 World Champion Edition is expected to reach the market next year, with prices starting from about £46,000, a premium of a few thousand pounds over the standard Mercedes-AMG A45.

Mercedes at Formula One

The reason for the special edition is a second consecutive Formula One World Championship win for Mercedes, in both driver and construction categories. Lewis Hamilton was once again the fastest around the track, followed by Nico Rosberg, as Mercedes emerged victorious at 16 of the season's 19 races, echoing last year's pattern, and closing with the weekend's Abu Dhabi F1 event.

While Hamilton was the overall winner and is now a three-time world champion, he has spent the last few races battling issues with the balance to his car which have seen him cede the pole position to team mate Rosberg. The driver claims he is already working with engineers on a solution for next year's season. For Rosberg, the 2015 season finished on a high with three consecutive race wins for the first time.

It's an impressive performance for a company which has only really been a part of modern Formula One for six seasons, although Mercedes did provide engines for other teams before creating its own factory team in 2010 in partnership with Malaysian oil firm Petronas. With its current line-up returning in 2016, Mercedes could be impossible to beat again next year...

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