By Alexi Falson, 01 Jul, 2021
Review - Mercedes-AMG A35
AF By Alexi Falson June 21, 2021
The Mercedes A35 AMG is billed as the cheapest ‘true’ AMG, meaning that it promises true performance, and not merely a number of AMG badges. In this review, we’re going to find out just how accurate those claims are, and how the A35 AMG stacks up in the key areas of features, driving dynamics, practicality and long-term ownership.
Is the A35 AMG a true AMG, or is it just a branding exercise? Let’s find out.
Starting Price: $71,700
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How Much Does It Cost?
The Mercedes A-Class AMG lineup kicks off at $71,700 for the base model A35 AMG Hatch, with a sedan on offer from $72,700. From here, Mercedes’ range of fast A-Classes tops out with the A45 S AMG 4Matic+ which is priced from $93,235. The $71,700 entry-price into the A35 AMG range is slightly more than Audi’s S3, which is priced from $65,000, and the BMW M235i which is priced at $68,000.
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What Features Does the A35 AMG Have?
The Mercedes A35 AMG comes generously equipped from the factory. Considering just how far up the A-Class lineup it sits, Mercedes is happy to throw in all the features you could possibly want in the A35. These include 19-inch wheels, a full AMG-style body kit, AMG ride control adaptive suspension with AMG drive modes, Lugano leather seats wrapped over the heated, electronic seats, keyless entry, multi-function sports steering wheel, ambient interior lighting, a panoramic sunroof, a set of two 10.25-inch screens, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support, wireless smartphone charging, adaptive LED head and tail lights, reversing camera with front and rear cameras, autonomous parking technology and a huge suite of safety equipment.
- 19-inch alloys
- AMG-style body kit
- AMG Ride Control With Adaptive Suspension
- 2 x 10.25-inch screens
- LED Headlights
- Lugano Leather Interior
- Panoramic Sunroof
- Autonomous Parking
Is it Exciting to Drive?
Arguably the strongest selling point of the A35 AMG is its engine, drivetrain and sophisticated suspension system. The A35’s 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine produces 225kW of power and 400Nm of torque, which combined with Mercedes’ all-wheel drive 4MATIC system, helps it sprint to 100km/h in just 4.7 seconds. In terms of the question we posed at the start of this review, the A35 is not merely a branding exercise, it is a true AMG creation in the body of a humble A-Class.
Perhaps the most clever part of the A35 AMG, though, is how well it can hide its fire-breathing personality. Depending on which drive mode is selected - there’s comfort, sport or sport plus settings - the A35 AMG can behave itself and provide an effortless drive for your commute, or transform into a street-legal racer. In its comfort setting, the A35 AMG is calm, complacent, and extremely forgiving in the urban environment. At low speeds, it remains comfortable, and thanks to its small stature, the A35 AMG is agile in the tight confines of the urban jungle.
As the speed picks up, though, the true personality begins to shine through, and will leave absolutely no one disappointed at the performance on offer. The steering feels alive, and the all-wheel drive platform gives the driver confidence to keep the throttle open through corners for a more engaging drive.
Is it Practical and Spacious?
In terms of space and practicality, the A35 AMG is not a class-leader, but it’s important to note that this specific car was not designed with practicality at the forefront; performance was the goal, and Mercedes has no doubt achieved that goal. Overall, though, the front of the cabin is both luxurious, and spacious, thanks to Mercedes clever interior packaging. Comfort is a priority for Mercedes, and we’re pleased to report that the A35 AMG upholds Merc’s reputation, offering an immense amount of luxury and comfort in a relatively small package. In the rear of the cabin, there’s more than enough room for adult passengers, although headroom is slightly lacking.
The downside of that small packaging, though, is that it lacks the sheer practicality of some of its rivals. In terms of the A35 AMG’s practicality, cargo storage is rated at 370L, which extends to 1210L with the rear-seats folded down.
Is it Safe?
The A35 AMG has been awarded ANCAP’s maximum Five Star Safety Rating, and comes fitted with a generous amount of safety equipment from the factory. This includes cruise control with autonomous braking that works up to 200km/h, active lane assist, lane departure warnings, rear cross traffic alerts, traffic sign recognition, blind spot monitoring, fatigue alerts. Unfortunately, though, features like adaptive cruise control and front cross-traffic alerts are reserved for the optional Driving Assistance Package.
Is it Fuel Efficient?
The A35 AMG is officially rated at 7.6L per 100km on a combined cycle, meaning that its relatively economical for a performance-focussed car. In the real world, these figures are likely to jump to around 8-9L per 100km on an urban commute, but would drop on lengthy highway stints. Overall, the A35’s economy is nothing to get excited about, but it is not embarrassed by its competitors, either.
Our Verdict: Is the Mercedes A35 AMG Worth it?
The Mercedes A35 AMG is an extremely exciting car, and impressed us with its ability to behave dramatically differently, depending on which drive mode is selected. In essence, with a single transaction, you’re treating yourself to two cars: one, a comfortable and relaxing A-Class that provides a luxurious means of commuting, and the other, an absolute fire-breather that can set your hair on fire as you return from a long day at the office.
With this in mind, it’s hard to fault the A35 AMG, and goes to show that it is a car deserving of its AMG badge. If you’re in the market for a performance-focussed commuter, click here to get a free quote and see how much Georgie can save you on your next car, or call us on 1300 719 925
Five Specs You Need to Know
- 225kW of Power, 400Nm of Torque
- 7 Speed Sports Dual Clutch Transmission
- 0-100km/h in 4.7 seconds
- Three Adjustable Drive Modes
- Five-Year, Unlimited KM Warranty
- Immense power with silky-smooth transmission
- Generous standard equipment
- Luxurious cabin
- Lacking in practicality compared to other hot hatches
- Some safety tech remains optional extra
- Voice command system can prove problematic