Mercedes already announced its intention of dropping the current A-Class platform and build the future A-Class on the same platform as the current C-Class. What does this mean for the future A-Class that will be launched most probably in 2011? It will be a sporty-coupe capable to compete with models like Audi A3, BMW 1-Series and upcoming Saab 9-2.
The future A-Class will be built on a new layout, called MFA (Mercedes Front-wheel drive Architecture), that has been conceived to support a much wider range of models and allows for four-wheel drive, paving the way for high-performance variants.
Even if Mercedes recently launched a facelift for the A-Class, the current model will be dropped and replaced with a new model, that - according to the latest internet rumors - is already in the concept version.
Updated 03/14/2011: A first sketch of the new generation Mercedes A-Class surfaced on the internet today next to the information that the car will make its world debut at the Shanghai Motor Show from April 20 to 28.
Hit the jump to read more about the 2012 Mercedes A-Class.
The exterior and the interior
The future generation A-Class will feature a simpler, cheaper arrangement that will allow the next generation of vehicles to sit nearer to the ground.
Mercedes will opt for a more sportier and dynamic design, with lots of the exterior elements inspired by the F800 concept; the grille and the headlamps being the most distinguishable feature.
Changes will be made under the hood also: a new range of engines will power the future A-Class, but they also be used for other models. Hybrid versions are also under consideration.
However, the most interesting rumors are talking about an AMG version for the model. It is believed Mercedes will offer a sportier version powered by a supercharged 2.0 liter unit capable of 325 hp.
When can I buy one?
The new generation Mercedes A-Class will make its world debut later in April at the Shanghai Motor Show, so expect it to go on sale later this year. Prices will be announced at a later date.
With its new exterior design the new generation Mercedes A-Class will have more chances in front of its competitors, the Audi A3 and the BMW 1-Series. The A3 is offered with a range of five gasoline and four diesel engines. Outputs range from 105 HP in the entry level 1.2 TFSI version to 265 HP in the 2.0 TFSI version. Of course that until we will see the final design for the new A-Class, the A3 remains the car with the most impressive design. However, things may change a lot after Mercedes will bring the new A-Class, especially if that sketch is real.
While waiting for the updated 1-Series hatchback to be launched, we will talk about the coupe version. Recently facelifted, the model comes with design modifications, optimized aerodynamics, and attractive equipment features. Under the hood, the 3.0-liter twin-turbo engine has been dropped in favor of a twin-scroll turbocharged 3.0-liter inline-six engine. And if this modifications will also been made to the hatchback version, then the battle between the three German models will be even tight.