The other hot hatchbacks may be fighting tooth and nail for the crown, but Mercedes-AMG has decided to remind everyone that there is one model that has yet to enter the fray. It's the next-generation A45, and their Christmas video shows a camouflage-clad pre-production unit being put through its paces on a damp, slippery, frigid test track.
Yes, there's plenty of sideways action on throttle - which reminds people that this is an all-wheel drive vehicle. It's also an indication of what kind of torque bias the gearbox is capable of, which happily seems to be heavily rearwards for more impressive sideways antics. It's exciting to say the least, and it looks to be exciting enough to make it a viable proposition over the tamer A35 AMG that's being presented as the intermediate option.
For now, the details on the A45 AMG aren't exactly plentiful but here's what we know: it's packing a 2.0-litre 4-cylinder mill pushing an ungodly 400 hp, paired to an eight-speed dual clutch transmission that delivers power to all four wheels. There will also be a Drift mode, which we know is incredibly popular from cars like the Ford Focus RS as it changes the settings of the 4MATIC all-wheel drive system for bigger slip angles.