Saturday, 09 December 2023

2021 Mercedes-Benz AMG A35 sedan offers pure driving joy Featured

Posted On Sunday, 17 October 2021 17:27 Written by
Rate this item
(1 Vote)
The 2021 Mercedes-Benz AMG A35 sedan is powerful and sporty ride. The 2021 Mercedes-Benz AMG A35 sedan is powerful and sporty ride. Photo by Matt Myftiu/

For drivers seeking a luxury vehicle with a sporty personality, things can get pretty pricey. That’s why the entry-level options — compact sedans from the world’s leading luxury automakers — are often attractive for people looking to venture into this class of vehicles. 

Mercedes-Benz first launched its A-Class model back in the 2019 model year, and it’s been regularly ranked among top luxury sedans ever since. The 2021 model adds some new features, such as standard blind spot monitoring, and continues its tradition of providing a high-end design and strong performance.

Put all that together, and it’s an excellent way for folks working to enter the luxury class without breaking the bank on the larger and more high-end models.

I recently spent some time behind the wheel of a 2021 AMG A35. What's all the hype about? Read on to find out.


Let’s start on the interior, where the 2021 AMG A35 sedan offers a uniquely classy and aesthetically pleasing upscale design. Even the metallic air vents and steering wheel accents offer distinct Benz styling, and the AMG branding is present on the dash.

Interior highlights include ambient lighting, power front seats with lumbar support and memory, split-folding rear seats, rain-sensing windshield wipers, heated front seats, keyless start and dual zone automatic climate control.

The seating is attractive and comfortable, and features red stitching. You can opt to include the AMG performance steering wheel in Nappa Leather.

The A35 has limited interior space, of course, being the smallest Benz sedan. Don’t expect anyone tall to sit in the back seat. Call it a storage area unless you have kids or short adults sitting there.

Cargo space is also limited due to the vehicle’s size: 8.6 cubic feet with seats up, 14.83 cubic feet with rear seats down.

Moving to the exterior, the 2021 AMG A35 is a compact sedan that is low to the ground (just over 6 inches of clearance) and features the unmistakable Benz logo and grille up front. The Polar White paint job on my test vehicle was super sharp.

The A35 is a vehicle that will turn heads, and screams luxury and speed before you even step into it. It features a panorama sunroof, AMG Design trim in black and silver, and black matte 19-inch AMG multi-spoke wheels.

The optional AMG NIght Package will add a front splitter, AMG side panel inserts, beltline and window line trim strips in high-gloss black, exterior mirror covers, and black tailpipe trim.


The 2021 AMG A35 sedan features an AMG-enhanced 2.0-liter inline-4 turbo engine, paired with a 7-speed automatic transmission. Paddle shifters are included on the steering wheel if you want to be more involved and control the gear shifting.

Total output is 302 horsepower, and 295 pound-feet of torque (but it feels like a lot more).

The vehicle comes with standard all-wheel drive via the AMG Performance 4MATIC setup, and it features Start/Stop technology to boost fuel economy.

Drivers can customize the driving experience depending on their current situation on the road. AMG Dynamic Select allows you choose from the following drive modes: Slippery, Individual, Comfort and Sport. I tended to stay in Sport mode, which is by far the most fun of the bunch. Comfort can be used for everyday driving, especially in traffic, and Slippery is best in rainy conditions.

Helping improve the driving experience is Mercedes’ AMG Ride Control Sport Suspension, which uses sensors and computers to constantly measure specific variables — including lateral acceleration, chassis movement, and steering angle — to determine the proper amount of damping for each wheel. This is the type of technology that helps to make a performance vehicle what it is.

You also can add the optional AMG Aerodynamics Package, featuring a larger front splitter, larger rear spoiler lip, rear apron and a diffuser blade.

This is a vehicle that performs better than the horsepower would indicate. When you want to get moving quickly, the 2021 AMG A35 can go from 0 to 60 in about 4.5 seconds, and it’s one of the best sport sedans on the market in terms of pure driving experience. It offers tremendous handling, braking and responsiveness to driver input.

It sounds like a beast and it acts like one on the road. This is the type of car you get into on a Sunday and drive for no reason at all, preferably on a scenic road if you happen to have one nearby. Bring some good tunes, a passenger, and enjoy the ride.


The AMG A35’s Infotainment system features a large, 10.25-inch screen and is easy to master via voice controls, as well as touch commands on the steering wheel and touchscreen. There's also a center control pad where the shifter would be in other vehicles (Mercedes has moved shifting controls to a small lever behind the paddle shifters on the steering wheel, which opens up this space). So in the end, between all the control options and their ease of function, Mercedes offers one of the better user experiences on the market for infotainment.

It’s also compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto for phone connectivity, and you get SiriusXM radio with a free trial period, plus a Burmester Surround Sound System which provides quality audio output.

Wireless cell phone charging is offered, and the Mercedes Me feature allows the driver to remotely access services like Remote Engine Start, Locate Vehicle and Door Lock/Unlock via an app.

An optional Multimedia package includes: Navigation, Map Updates, Augmented Reality for Navigation and  Traffic Sign Assist.

The A35 also has a decent amount of safety features for a smaller vehicle. 

They include: Blind Spot Assist, Rearview Camera (high quality view, and it includes dynamic guidelines), LED headlamps and taillamps, Advanced airbag protection system and Active Brake Assist.


Official fuel numbers on the AMG A35 are 22 city/29 highway/25 combined, and I averaged 23.5 mpg in real world testing. Looking at key competitors such as the Audi S3, BMW M235i and Cadillac CT4-V, these are decent numbers, but not segment-leading.

But let’s be honest, the chances of a performance-car buyer making a decision based on fuel mileage are very slim. It’s all about drive quality and experience.


The 2021 AMG A35 I tested was priced just over $56,000; base price starts about $46K.

This is of course a significant amount of money, but when compared to other performanced-focused sedans in the segment from Audi, BMW, Cadillac and others, it’s quite competitive in pricing.

The AMG A35 also features a new vehicle warranty (4-year/50,000 miles), 24-hour roadside assistance program, and Mercedes-Benz emergency call service.


The 2021 AMG A35 sedan is a small but powerful ride from Mercedes that is far more than an A-to-B vehicle. It is a vehicle that is made to be driven to the limits, and provide maximum driver satisfaction for enthusiasts, at a price level that's not in the stratosphere.

For folks looking to make that move into the luxury realm, this is an excellent entry point.

==== can be found on Twitter @AutoTechReview, or stay updated at the AutoTechReviews Facebook page.

Matt Myftiu can be found on Twitter @MattMyftiu.

Additional Info

  • Vehicle: 2021 AMG A35 sedan 
  • Price as tested: $56,020 (starts around $46K)  
  • Best feature: Pure driving experience    
  • Rating: 4.5 out of five stars   
  • Who will want this vehicle?: Sedan buyers who want a small and powerful performance-focused luxury ride 
Matt M. Myftiu

Matt Myftiu has been a journalist for two decades with a focus on technology, NASCAR and autos.

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Leave a comment

Make sure you enter all the required information, indicated by an asterisk (*). HTML code is not allowed.

Search Reviews by Make

AutoTechReviews  is your home for In-depth reviews of the latest cars, trucks, and SUVs; information on all the emerging vehicle technology; and breaking news from the world of NASCAR and other motorsports.