Parkers overall rating: 4 out of 5 4.0

Borrowing many parts from the regular A-Class, the A 45 AMG is a familiar place to be. Of course, it does feel far sportier than your common or garden small Mercedes hatchback. There are coloured bezels for the heaters and obviously those sports seats mark this out as something pretty special.

The switchgear and multi-media system is exactly the same as available in the A-Class, controlled via the rotary selector behind the gear lever.

Switching between the drive modes requires pressing the small button with circular arrows on it located at the bottom corner of the gear lever.

Although it has some extremely comfortable and supportive seats, Mercedes-Benz A 45 AMG comfort levels aren’t exactly high. The problem is the ride, which is what we’d generously call ‘firm’. In fact, it’s downright jolty on anything other than glass-smooth roads. Get it onto a race track, however, and it really comes into its own.

Road and tyre noise seem like silly things to pick out for the A 45 since that engine roar dominates any aural aspects of the car.

There’s a choice of two suspension systems – an AMG Sports Suspension and AMG Performance Suspension. The former is slightly softer, but not by a huge amount.

Following the facelift in 2015 the cabin got slightly quieter thanks to improved aerodynamics.