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Selwyn Times: May 24, 2016

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http://kaywa.me/Op1Vo My Kaywa QR-Code www.robertbrucemotors.co.nz 28 Tuesday May 24 2016 motoring SELWYN TIMES Mercedes-Benz A-Class with oomph I remember well when Mercedes-Benz first launched the A-Class away back it 1997, it was deemed to be an affordable footstep into the luxury car brand. I drove the A-Class at that time and suggested it was a bit of a departure for Mercedes- Benz, but it was certainly a funky, trendy model which would suit those whose budget wouldn’t stretch to something more grandiose. Over the ensuing years the A-Class has grown into something far more complex as a series, and its price has crept up to a point where it must be considered an integral part of Mercedes-Benz’s psyche. The test car this evaluation focuses on is the A250 Sport, as its nomenclature suggests, it is a bit of a rip-snorter, far removed from the ideology of the first A-Class. In fact, I describe the A250 Sport as an A-Class on steroids. It’s not so much the exterior dimensions that have grown, the 250 is still quite compact at just 4.4m, but under the bonnet sits a 2-litre, turbocharged, fourcylinder engine which pumps out an impressive 160kW and 350Nm, both outputs achieved in accessible parts of the rev band at 5500rpm and 1200rpm respectively. The 1991cc unit is not unfamiliar to me, it has sat in many of the Mercedes-Benz models I’ve driven in the last couple of years, and if you take into account the body shell of the A250 is a lot lighter than in other models at 1445kg, the result is a high power-to-weight ratio and swift performance. Take, for example, a 7.2sec standstill to 100kmh time along with a 224km/h top speed. By my stopwatch the A250 will also haul to 120km/h from 80km/h in 5sec which all combine to easily place it in the performance car category. As quick as it is in a straight line, the A250 also handles like a hot hatchback should. It rides on huge sport specification Continental tyres (235/35 x 19in), by the sheer nature of their profile they are there to promote grip when pushed hard into a corner. I took the test car on part of the Scenic Route – State Highway 72 into the Rakaia MERCEDES-BENZ A250: Performance hatchback. Gorge bypassing Methven on my return to the city. It was a good run for the A250, it relished the challenge of those tricky gorge corners both up and downhill. Grip is phenomenal and body balance is well maintained. The A250’s suspension is a fully independent set-up, and it carries drive to all four wheels courtesy of Mercedes-Benz’s 4Matic system. Prestige cars have this way of exuding feel through the chassis and you can actually feel grip from the rear when blasting out of a corner. I’m not saying the A250 needs four-wheel-drive to retain composure, but what I am saying is that it is nice feel when you get that sensation of drive from the rear. The spring and damper rates are such that ride comfort has been given priority, but that doesn’t negate the A250’s composure in a corner, body movement doesn’t override the quality of the suspension, and with so much grip on offer there’s never a point where you feel you aren’t in control. Because the A250’s engine isn’t working overly hard most of the time, and with its light weight, there are constantly respectable fuel usage returns on offer. During my long highway test the engine was sipping fuel at the rate of seven-litre per 100km (40mpg) at a constant 100km/h, the engine spinning slowly at SPECIFICATIONS Price: Mercedes-Benz A250 Sport, $67,900. Dimensions: Length,4433mm; width, 1780mm; height, 1433mm. Configuration: Four-cylinder transverse, four-wheel-drive, 1991cc, 160kW, 350Nm, seven-speed automatic. Performance: 0-100km/h, 7.2sec. just 1600rpm at that speed. That resulted in an 8.6l/100km (33mpg) average when I took the car back to the dealership, those figures correlated well with Mercedes-Benz’s 6.7l/100km (42mpg) combined cycle claim. The A250 Sport lands here at $67,900, bearing in mind that other A-Class models list from $48,600. I knew I was going to enjoy my time in the A250 Sport. Not only was it good to be reacquainted with the A-Class after all those years, but I enjoyed its sophistication, it has grown into a performance car which easily competes with other European hot hatchbacks. But if that’s not what you want, there are other models which still relate to the ideology of the original, or with even higher performance, such as the A45. $14,999 2005 Holden Commodore VZ 5.7L V8, Auto with Power/Eco Modes, Factory 17" Alloys, Remote Locking, Alarm, 4 Airbags, Cruise Control, Full Leather Trim, Auto Headlights. Great Value Buying! $17,999 $15,999 $18,999 CHRISTCHURCH'S LEADING COMMODORE & FALCON DEALERS 2004 Holden Commodore VZ ss 5.7L V8, Auto with Power/Eco Modes, Factory 18" Alloy Wheels, Remote Locking, Alarm, 6 disc CD Player, 4 Airbags, Cruise Control, Full Leather Trim, Auto Headlights. $9,999 $25,999 Keep up with your local news online selwyntimes.co.nz WOF $40 .00 • Courtesy cars • Oil changes • Full mechanical repairs • Brake & clutch repairs • Transmission flush service • Tyres & batteries • Petrol & diesel servicing Fitzgerald Motors 2003 Holden Commodore Vy sV8 Harman Motorsport enhanced, OTR intake, Bigbore exhaust, Big Cam Upgrade, 20 DTM alloys, rear spoiler. 2008 Ford FalCon FG Xr6 4.0L, twin cam engine, 6 speed tiptronic, auto,17" alloys, climate a/c, remote locking, cruise control. 2003 Holden Commodore Vy series ii 3.8L Ecotec V6, auto, full VZ style HSV bodykit, 17" HSV alloys, remote locking, 4 airbags, cruise, in fantastic condition! 2005 HsV CluBsPorT VZ 297 6.0L V8, Bigbore Exhaust, Alarm,19" Alloys, Cruise, Climate A/C, Towbar, Electric Seats, Full HSV Bodykit. PHONE 03 349 7813 2/193 Waterloo road, Hornby $41,999 $15,999 $18,999 $24,999 2010 Ford FPV F6 4.0L turbo 6 spd sports shift auto, FPV Brembo performance brakes, 19" FPV alloys, low 44,000kms! 2004 Ford FalCon Ba Xr6 4.0L, tiptronic auto, 17" alloys, cruise, CD player, remote locking, driving lights, sports suspension. 2006 Ford FalCon Xr6 mKii uTe 4.0L, tiptronic sports shift auto, 18" alloys, remote locking, CD, cruise, auto lights, towbar, lockable hardlid, low 75,000kms. 2004 HsV CluBsPorT r8 285 series 2 5.7L V8, headers, Bigbore exhaust, 19" alloys, big brake package, alarm, traction control, cruise, leather trim. $13,999 $24,999 $16,999 $27,999 2007 Ford FalCon BF Xr6 mKii 190kW 4.0L twincam engine, 6 speed tiptronic, 19" alloys, cruise, CD player, remote locking, towbar. 2011 Holden Commodore Ve sV6 series ii 3.6L, 6 speed tiptronic, 8 airbags, ESP, cruise control, alarm, lowered sports suspension, 18" alloys. 2008 Holden Commodore Ve sV6 3.6L V6, 5 spd tiptronic sports shift auto, ESC, 8 airbags, cruise, 18" alloys, dual exhaust, spoilers, parking sensors. 2012 Holden CaPTiVa 7 lX series ii 3.0L, 6 spd tiptronic, EBD, 8 airbags, reverse cam, GPS, alloys, cruise, auto suspension, Bluetooth, 7 seats, towbar, low 69,900kms. $25,999 s $15,999 2007 ToyoTa landCruiser Prado 4.0L V6 petrol, auto, 7 seater, Hi/Lo ratio 4WD, climate A/C, towbar, keyless entry, Exceptional example. 2006 Holden CaPTiVa 7 lX aWd 3.2L V6 Tiptronic Auto, Alloys, Climate A/C, Cruise, Towbar, Traction Control, Factory Parking Assist, 7 Seater. 03 366 5888 www.robertbrucemotors.co.nz Corner Lancaster St & Moorhouse Ave | OPEN 7 DAYS

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