29 April 2012

Blast from the past - Mercedes-Benz A38 AMG

Think the 2013 Mercedes-Benz A250 is the raciest A-Class with its 211PS engine? Think again.  Before the world has gone crazy of creating a concept car with a hybrid engine with a very emotional 30 km/h of top speed,  Mercedes has commissioned a special twin-engined A-Class, and they are called A38 AMG. It was created back in the late nineties when McLaren Mercedes F1 cars driven by Mika Hakkinen and David Coulthard were the chase rabbit round the F1 track,  So special that only four are only ever made, where two of those went to, guess it right, the two drivers above.

The A38 AMG is based on the normal twin-floor sandwich platform Mercedes A-Class where the 1.9L in-line four cylinder engine producing a meagre 125bhp lies underneath the hood. However, AMG engineers have installed an identical unit at the back of the car, practically between the rear wheel, beneath where the boot lies. Combined, 1.9L makes 3.8L (hence the A38 name) and produced 250bhp  and 360Nm driving all four wheels via 5 speed manual gearbox governed via some electronic clutch trickery. This package is sufficient to drive the Mercedes-Benz A-Class with new dimensions of speed whereby it can reach the 100km/h milestone in 5.9 second and a 230km/h top speed.
To enable the installation of the transverse 1.9L engine at the back, the rear end of the A-Class has been redesigned and utilized a lot of bracing made by carbon fibre. Meanwhile, to cope with the added muscle, AMG parts bin of its larger siblings have been raid and AMG has fitted the front brake of E55 AMG to the A38. Measured 334mm in diameter, the 32mm thick ventilated disc is supported by the solid 258mm disc. With the aid for ABS and EBD, ESP and BAS, braking distance from 100km/h is less than 37m, which is great by the standard at that time. The car rolls on 18" alloy wrapped in Bridgestone Potenza tyres of 225/35 R18.

More photos of the Mercedes-Benz A38 AMG can be found after the jump.

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