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AMG Sport range plans revealed

Big seller: The A250 Sport was July’s best-selling car for Mercedes-Benz in Australia which presents a good case for rolling out the new AMG Sport line here.

Mercedes-Benz extends its AMG Sport line-up as A250 Sport tops sales charts

Mercedes-Benz logo4 Aug 2014

MERCEDES-BENZ Australia/Pacific has confirmed the launch of a new sub-AMG performance brand that it will attach to a number of its key models to go head to head with Audi's S line and BMW's M Performance models.

The introduction of AMG Sport variants at some point next year follows the sales success of models such as the A-Class A250 Sport performance hatch, which has been confirmed as the new number-one seller for the German brand in Australia.

Speaking to GoAuto today, Mercedes-Benz Australia senior manager of public relations, product and communications David McCarthy said sales of cars from performance division AMG are at an all-time high, while adding that the A250 Sport was Benz’s biggest-selling car in July.

“We had our best-ever month for AMG – 340 cars,” Mr McCarthy said. “Which brings our year-to-date figure to 1500.

“The biggest-single selling model across our entire passenger and SUV range is the A250 Sport which accounts for over five percent of volume.” The 155kW/350Nm A250 Sport went on sale in Australia in March 2013 and while it is a performance-focused A-Class variant, it is not an AMG model like its hardcore 265kW/450Nm A45 sibling which, at $74,900 plus on-road costs, sits at the top of the line-up.

Instead the A250 Sport has been enhanced by the engineers at AMG, with upgrades to the chassis, exhaust and a more powerful engine. Other models given the partial AMG treatment include the mechanically related CLA250 Sport and the C250 Sport Coupe.

Now it has been revealed Mercedes-Benz will roll out the AMG Sport line across more of its models, from A-, C-, E- and S- to GL-, ML-, GLK- and GLA-Class.

Much like the A250 Sport, each variant will sit below the AMG version but be more performance-focused than other variants. Mr McCarthy said that given the success of the A250 Sport it’s a good indication more AMG Sport variants will arrive in Australia.

“With A250 Sport being the single biggest selling variant and C250 Sport (Coupe) doing very well, too, that shows us that there is very clearly a market for that product - so watch this space,” he said.

It is unclear how many AMG Sport variants will make their way here, but you can expect some of the larger Mercedes-bagded models such as those in the E- and CLS-Class to be among them.

The C-Class-based C450 AMG Sport will be the first new variant to be built and will make its public appearance later this year. It is set to be powered by a 3.0-litre twin-turbo V6 petrol engine producing 274kW.

Mr McCarthy said Mercedes-Benz Australia was tossing up whether to bring the sporty C-Class to Australia.

“It’s on our radar. I can’t confirm if the C450 AMG Sport will come to Australia, we have not made a decision on it yet.” While McCarthy is remaining quiet on the subject for now, sources close to Mercedes have told GoAuto not to discount the C450 AMG Sport, indicating it will launch in Australia.

The extended AMG Sport line-up fills the gap between Mercedes' high-performance AMG cars and the regular variants in each class, and gives the German brand more ammunition to fight its rivals.

Direct competitor Audi offers its popular S-line on a number of models, including the A3, A4, A6 and A7 as alternatives to the more hardcore RS variants.

Fellow German BMW offers its M-Performance Automobiles which sit well under the M models such as the M3 and M4 performance twins, M5 and M6.

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