What Car? says...

Four hundred and fifteen horsepower. That might seem like the power figure for a musclebound sports or performance car, but it’s actually how much grunt the Mercedes AMG A45 packs under its sensible hatchback skin.

Even more impressive than the headline power figure – or indeed its 3.9sec 0-62mph time – is how the baby AMG achieves that level of firepower. You see, there isn't a big six or eight-cylinder engine to be found under the bonnet, just a 2.0-litre four-cylinder – albeit with a turbocharger that’s bigger than your head.

There’s really only one other hot hatch that can even get close to the A45’s manic performance: the Audi RS3. Of course, you might also want to consider the less powerful BMW M135i – especially if a premium badge is a must. 

So, is the Mercedes AMG A45 any good to drive, or is it just good for bragging rights down the pub? Stay with us over the next few pages of this review to find out if it’s fun as well as fast and whether you could actually live with the thing day to day.

Don’t forget that you can save thousands off the list price of most makes and models of cars by checking out our free What Car? New Car Deals service. It has some very tempting new hot hatch deals.