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21Mercedes-Benz A-Class dubbed most successful launch in company history

When we drove the 2012 Mercedes-Benz A-Class earlier this year, we called it "likely the most important Mercedes-Benz passenger car since the old 190 turned into the C-Class "Baby Benz" back in 1993." And just like that car opened all kinds of new doors for The Three-Pointed Star, the A-Class looks to be doing the same. Autocar reports that pre-orders in Western Europe number 70,000, a figure that would represent a ten-percent conversion rate of potential customers invited to pre-launch events.

42Mercedes-Benz A45 AMG 2.0 turbo good for crazy 185 HP per liter

We have just joined the journalist hordes in Affalterbach for some early peeks at AMG's imminent future, and the downsizing trend is really catching on, even here with Mercedes-Benz and its traditionally big-engined high-performance arm.

20AMG-fettled Mercedes-Benz A-Class caught testing

The Mercedes-Benz A25 AMG has disrobed almost completely compared to the last time we saw it. It makes minimal changes to the A-Class form, just a fiercer set of wheels and, under the last remaining camo, a brace of larger air intakes in front and a restyled diffuser in back. We'd also expect those oval pipe finishers to be swapped for trademark AMG quad pipes come production time.

20Mercedes teases A-Class ahead of Geneva debut

Last we heard, Mercedes-Benz was planning to bring its new A-Class to North America, a market where the current model has never been sold. But whether it makes the trek or not, there's little question that the new premium hatchback will be a vital product for Daimler.

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