A big thank you to all the guys at Mercedes-Benz Wellington ( 75 Cambridge Terrace) for allowing us use of the A250 Sport for this review. Drop in any time to check out their complete range of new and used Mercedes-Benz.
In 2012 Mercedes-Benz launched the third generation of the A-Class with their eyes firmly set on the booming hot hatch market. So far we have seen two models available in New Zealand, the entry level A180, and the A200 which is available in both petrol and diesel models. The A180 starting at $46,000 comes with a 1.6 litre turbocharged petrol engine producing 90kw (200nm) and the A200 starting at $54,900 produces 115kw (250nm) from the same engine. The A200 CDI is turbocharged but has a slightly high capacity of 1.8 litres, giving it 100kw (300nm). These models sit just outside the benchmark specs for hot hatches, but their third addition to the family aims to remedy that. The A250 Sport is packing a 2 litre turbocharged straight 4 which produces 155kw (207hp) and aims to push long standing hot hatch legends like VW’s Golf GTi and Fords Foucs ST aside.
The third generation A class is a very different car from previous two generations and all we could think is “Thank god for that”. The diamond-like spiral grille is one of its main defining features, paired with a front and rear air diffusers emphasizing the fact that is a sporty piece of kit. Right from the get go you can see that AMG has had a hand in the development, as standard it comes with 18 inch AMG alloy wheels, AMG bodystyling, and what you don’t see but will notice once you drive is AMG’s lowered sports suspension.
The interior like every other offering from Mercedes is built to a very high standard. The sporty feeling carries through to the interior, red seatbelts and rimmed vents, carbon fibre-look dash, AMG sport wheel and sports pedals.
The Test Drive
The A250 Sport is powered by a front wheel drive 2.0 litre turbocharged petrol engine producing 155kW (207hp) which is accompanied by Mercedes 7G-DCT (Dual Clutch) 7 speed gearbox. The firm suspension might not appeal to everyone but those who buy this car for pure driving feel will love it. The steering through corners is very smooth and direct, allowing you to confidently put the car where you want to on the road. Body control is flat and the 155kw engine has plenty of kick to pull the car hard out of tight corners without any noticeable torque steer, straight line performance take the A250 to 100km in 6.6 seconds. The big sports brakes deliver precise control and make light work of repeated hard stops. The paddle shift is quick and with three drive models to select from, Manual, Eco and Sport. It allows the driver to configure the vehicle for most applications, and gear selection was also available via column shift. We thought this a bit strange at first, but adjusted to it very quickly. Sport seats were very comfy and would be ideal for long trips. Boot space was good and as expected compared to other brands hot hatches.
Starting at $64,900 the A250 features a panoramic tilt and slide electric sunroof, Perforated front discs and Bi-xenon auto head lights, reverse camera and active park assist. All the variants have nine air-bags as standard, ECO Start/Stop and Mercedes’s Presafe accident anticipatory system features as part of the larger comprehensive safety package called Collision Prevention Assist.
- Engines performance worthy of Sport title.
- Good standard equipment package.
- Leather Sport Seats, Very Comfy.
- Responsive handling and braking.
- High quality interior, red trim highlights enhances the sporty feel.
- Panoramic roof as standard.
- Complete package is typical of Mercedes classy high end styling.
- Center Command console screen, not integrated as well into the rest of the interior.
- Some button design for electronics and displays a little uncoordinated.
What its up against.
The A250 Sport ways into an already thriving market, up against some very well established brand and models. The A250 sports price starts quite high up the grid, however its range of standard features makes it very competitive and a serious contender.
|Brand / Model||Power||Price|
|Audi S3 Sportback||195kw (350 Nm)||$83,700|
|Mercedes-Benz A250 Sport||155kw (350 Nm)||$64,900|
|BMW 125i M Sport||160kw (310 Nm)||$64,700|
|Volkswagen Golf GTi||155kw (280 Nm)||$58,500|
|Ford Focus ST||184kw (360 Nm)||$52,840|
|Mini Countryman S||135kw – (240 Nm)||$51,500|
|Mazda 3 MPS||190kw – (380 Nm)||$49,195|
What do we think ?
We really like this car, Mercedes have done their homework and taken a lot from what the already established brands have learned from the hot hatch market. Its a serious contender and one to watch. And if this is what Mercedes offer as their first sports model, we can’t wait to see what the A45 AMG version will be like.
Mercedes-Benz A-Class A250 Sport
Front Engine, FWD, 5 Door Hatchback
$ 64,900 NZD
$ 68,500 NZD
2.0-litre 4-cylinder, 165kW/350Nm
7-speed dual clutch manumatic
0 – 100 kph
Length x Width x Height
4292 x 2022 x 1043 mm
Urban 5.6 L/100km
Motorway 4.0 L/100km
Combined 6.6 L/100km, 116 g/km CO2
Rating – Chevron rating 4 out of 5
A big thank you to all the guys at Mercedes-Benz Wellington ( 75 Cambridge Terrace) for allowing us use of the A250 Sport for this review. Drop in any time to check out there complete range of new and used Mercedes-Benz.