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Auto blogWed, 23 Apr 2014
We may not have an official starting price for the 2015 Mercedes-Benz C-Class, but as of right now, we can tell you about all the options for the eagerly anticipated new luxury sedan.
Benz Report has the entire order guide for the C-Class, with breakdowns from package pricing to how many different colors, wheel designs and lighting configurations will be available when the new model hits dealers later this year. As we mentioned in our initial review of the C-Class, there will be a pair of engine options, with the now familiar 2.0-liter, turbocharged four-cylinder available in both rear- and all-wheel-drive configurations and a 3.0-liter, twin-turbocharged V6, which can be had in all-wheel drive, only.
From there, though, the available options are impressive. Much like it does on the current car, Mercedes is offering a pair of packages that sort of define the entire car. With the C300, buyers will have the choice of either a Sport or Luxury package in addition to the base trim, while C400 buyers are limited to the Sport model.
If you're a serious fan of Formula One, you already know all about The Great Nosecone Conundrum of 2014. Those given to parsing each year's F1 regulations predicted the strong possibility of the so-called "anteater" noses as far back as early December 2013. Highly suggestive visual evidence first came after Caterham's crash test in early January, with further proof coming as soon as Williams showed a rendering of the FW36 challenger for this year's championship. That car earned a name that wasn't nearly so kind as "anteater."
Casual followers of the sport - or anyone who gets the feed from this site - probably don't know what's happening, except to wonder why the current year's F1 cars are led by appendages that would make Cyrano de Bergerac feel a whole lot better about himself.
The short answer to the question of ugsome F1 noses is "FIA regulations and safety." The reason there are various kinds of ugsome noses is simpler: engineers. The same boffins who have given us advances including carbon fiber monocoques, six-wheeled cars, double diffusers and Drag Reduction Systems are bred to do everything in their power to exploit every possible freedom in the regulations to make the cars they're building go faster - the caveat being that those advances have to work within the overall philosophy of the whole car.
Fun coincidence. On the same day that Audi announces the unveiling of its new S3 Sportback at the Geneva Motor Show, Mercedes-Benz steals the spotlight by confirming that the all-new A45 AMG will also receive its official debut early next month. Starting life as the entry-level A-Class hatchback, the A45 AMG gets the full AMG treatment, which includes numerous performance, handling and styling upgrades.
Under the hood sits an AMG-tuned 2.0-liter turbocharged I4 breathing through a sport exhaust system helping the five-door produce 360 horsepower and 332 pound-feet of torque. This engine is paired to a seven-speed AMG dual-clutch transmission and power is sent to the ground using 4Matic all-wheel drive. Mercedes-Benz says that the A45 AMG will be able to accelerate from 0-60 miles per hour in under 4.5 seconds and it will have a top speed of 155 mph; in the land of hot hatches, it doesn't get much hotter than that. For added performance and handling, AMG has retuned the A-Class' suspension and steering systems and equipped The A45 with a three-stage stability control system that is specific to this car.
Surprisingly, the exterior styling of the A-Class was already sporty enough that the new model doesn't receive too many changes to become the A45 AMG. The biggest alterations include black accents to the chin spoiler, rocker panels and mirror caps, black wheels with red-painted brake calipers and rectangular dual exhaust outlets. Inside, it doesn't take a trained eye to spot the differences. The flat-bottomed sport steering wheel and the numerous red accents throughout the cabin (including the seatbelts!) really help to make this AMG interior stand out; front passengers will also get sport bucket seats that appear to be more than supportive enough for even the most spirited driving conditions.