These are the first official photographs of the Mercedes-Benz A45 AMG, the first 'compact' model from Affalterbach, and we are assured that these are the real thing even though the car in the picture is still partially camouflaged for road testing.
And no, Cyril, it does not have a 4.5-litre V8 - the 45 in the model designation refers to the 45th anniversary this year of the founding of AMG.
What it does have is a two-litre turbopetrol four, borrowed from the A250 and leaned on in the top-secret AMG skunk works at No.1, Daimlerstrasse until it squeaked. Insiders quote an eye-watering 258kW and 450Nm, driving all four wheels through a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission and a Haldex viscous centre coupling.
VERY QUICK INDEED
Past practice suggests that it will be electronically limited to 250km/h; the numbers quoted above suggest it will get there very quickly indeed.
It this is indeed the production version, then the body kit seems very similar to the AMG Sport styling package you can get for the standard A-Class. The 18” rims, however, are very special - and probably need to be, to accommodate some serious braking equipment.