Go back a decade or two and the notion of luxury, for most customers, meant a big car. But with fuel prices rising, emissions regulations, and cities plunging, more buyers are looking for smaller cars that do not hit the luxury.
Upscale car makers have made smaller vehicles in response to this and in greater variety. And the boss among them, one could argue is Mercedes-Benz, who is now preparing to launch its fourth generation of the A-Class.
Discovered by our Paparazzi at CarPix while he is in his home country Germany, the MkIV A-Class, Is still quite well hidden from our curious eyes with this form-hide (albeit positive) camouflage. But we already have an idea of how it looks as soon as Mercedes is ready to show it to the world.
Despite its compact orientation, the Next Gen A Class seems to have grown in size Again, offers more space for passengers and freight, and easier access thanks to a larger tailgate trim. We can also expect that a range of petrol and diesel engines is offered to follow with three-cylinder and possibly even a plug-in hybrid version.
Of the most interest for performance enthusiasts is not one, however, two AMG versions, similar to the 43 and 63 versions, which we have seen, for example, from the C-Class and the E-Class, Or the 63 and 65 versions of S, SL and G. In this case we expect an A40 with about 340 hp and a new A45 with 400 pieces. (In view of the larger openings, tailpipes, wheels and low profile rubber, this seems to be one of these AMG models.)
This is not all that Mercedes has for its smallest models. A limousine version is expected to launch in China, while the same MFA2 platform is expected to underpin replacement for the CLA, GLA and B-Class, with a new GLB crossover also joining. For better or worse, the concept of a SLA roadster has never come out of the drawing board.
Whatever follows, the A-Class rear-door model will arrive first and we will probably see the finished product at the Frankfurt Auto Show in September, with shipments expected to begin early next year.