While other luxury car manufacturers are getting busy launching ‘normal’ luxury cars, Mercedes has been doing that and more. The brand has had great success with the E-Class of sedans and SUVs along with fanfare for S-Class derivatives of vehicles as well. However, there is one thing that is surprisingly capturing more attention than these, which are the AMG cars. The AMG vehicles which are now present in the entire portfolio of the brand along with ‘normal’ powertrain-equipped cars have slowly grabbed attention. Reason? Many! Performance over the ‘normal’ petrol motors and similar flexibility of everyday use. Mercedes A-Class was well received as the brand offered an 8-year warranty and a good-looking sedan with ample options to choose from. Mercedes AMG A35 is one of them. To wit, Even with a 3-year warranty, this A-Class derative has some serious potential. How good is it? We find out!
On the outside, the butterfly tail lamps are a great addition to the A-Class. The new angular LED DRL at the front along with the AMG grille makes the car look one of the best entry-level AMG saloons to come out from Mercedes globally. The C-pillar makes it look like a legitimate younger sibling of the C-Class. A sporty bumper on both ends makes the A35 AMG look like a proper European sports sedan. The build quality on the outside seems and sounds great and it scores high on crash tests like any other Mercedes. Overall, the elements on the car, such as alloy wheels, and a well-done front grille make the A35 AMG stand out in every color over the regular A-Class.
On the inside, the build and quality are good and so is the expansive feature list we have explained time and again in our previous report. The interior has fantastic turbine jet air vents and rocker switches which makes the cabin look sporty and powerful. You get automatic lights and wipers to reversing cameras, front and rear parking sensors, wireless chargers, ambient lighting, and projectors with LED lamps. The one thing we don’t like is going through music where the cursor is missing and using the touchpad on the steering wheel, you need to find it first and then navigate it to the track button, and then use it. The long tedious process can be fixed by using a tap on the touch screen or using the buttons below. Something Mercedes should fix by just initiating the swiping of the pad on the steering, which should change by assuming it is a track change command and changing the track at the first go! Yes, this is the third time we mentioned the same fact with the Mercedes system that truly needs an update!
The car has a large panoramic sunroof, electric and memory function equipped AMG sports seats. Missing equipment continues as it lacks ventilated seats, wireless apple car play, and android auto. However, the best part is the full screen that is on offer behind the AMG steering wheel which extends all the way to the center and adds technology aspect to the car making it great to access all features easily. The instrument cluster has everything you need as explained earlier in our A-Class review. There is Mercedes ME, concierge service, and all other connected features to make it just like the A-Class, but with more performance!
Space is more than sufficient with enough shoulder and knee room you expect is here considering it is a performance sedan in disguise or a normal limousine. Leg and headroom continue to be in good supply but as always it is a strict four-seater. The boot space is good enough at 400 liters but the space saver takes away the space. Road noise inside the cabin is a bit higher but the wind noise is well-controlled thanks to good insulation. Like any other Mercedes, it is still a pleasant place to be thanks to multi-level filtration. Safety kit continues to be high with electronic stability control and eight airbags, Hill Hold Assist, ABS and EBD, Active Brake Assist, etc coming as standard.
AMG petrol engines are smooth, free-revving, and low on NVH and the one on the A35 is the same but with a boat load of power and torque. 2.0l Motor makes 301 BHP and 400 Nm of torque. Low and mid-range are good on the motor. All this is going through a quick-shifting and smooth and seamless 7-speed DSG automatic. The engine is flexible and powerful at the same time. 0-100 km/hr in 4.5 seconds is quick and it has an electronically limited top speed of 250 km/hr on offer.
Off-the-line acceleration for a car that looks like a family car shoots so fast and ahead that it makes you concentrate very hard and when you do, it does not disappoint. It ends up bringing the inner child out of you at the same time, smiling all the way, till you hit the brakes. The soundtrack, of course, is not V8 thunder, but for a four-cylinder extracting 300 BHP, it is good to hear that raspy exhaust note.
Top-end is excellent when the boost kicks. The engine can cruise at legal speeds and higher than that, quite easily when you want it to. This makes it good enough for city and highway duties and makes driving comfortable. We saw it getting 12 km/l on the highway and 8 km/l in the city which isn’t that bad for 300 horsepower entry-level sedan.
The ride quality is just about compliant enough at all speeds and that is something not new with AMG cars. The steering gives enough feedback and is very precise at all speeds. This is something Mercedes is doing just right with all its cars these days. The steering weighs up on the highway really well too! High-speed stability is spot on thanks to the ideal balance of underlying stiffness and compliance from the suspension. The brakes were good too with great pedal bite and a lot of performance on offer. Body roll is negligible while changing lanes at high speeds and it is still a very confidence-inspiring car to drive at any given speed. The ground clearance over really badly made speed breakers is a problem, the rest of them can be dealt with easily.
Overall, with AWD, the traction and grip are not a problem at all. They help in launching the car and cornering the car. A reason why we love AWD cars nowadays as they provide fun and safety at the same time without compromising on performance or fuel economy for that matter!
2022 Mercedes A35 AMG Review, Verdict
At Rs 69 lakhs on-road in most cities, the A35 is a very good value for money. Sure, the ground clearance and stiff ride are something that needs to keep in mind. However, it is practical enough for the posh and well-paved areas of most cities, and the reason why A35 AMG should be on your list, at top of it very specifically, to check out. Mechanically, cosmetically and value-wise, the A35 ticks all the boxes. This makes it the most desirable AMGs in India which is surprisingly approachable and gives you a grand entry into the world of AMG.
2022 Mercedes A35 AMG Review,