Mercedes-Benz planning plug-in hybrid A-Class

The drivetrain could also power the CLA and the GLB, among others.

Mercedes-Benz will soon expand its line-up of plug-in hybrid models with a gasoline-electric variant of the A-Class hatchback. While the model isn't sold in the United States, where buyers prefer sedans, the powertrain it will receive could end up under the sheet metal of American-spec models.

The system consists of a turbocharged, 1.3-liter four-cylinder engine normally found in the A200 model, and an electric motor integrated into the automatic gearbox. The four-cylinder generates 158 horsepower and 148 pound-feet of torque, while the motor adds an additional 101 horsepower and 221 pound-feet of torque. Final specifications haven't been released yet, but British magazine Autocar learned the plug-in A delivers performance on par with the 221-horsepower A250.

The motor draws electricity from a 15-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery pack. The A250e can drive on electricity alone for 37 miles, according to the fabulously optimistic WLTP testing cycle, and it can reach 87 mph without needing to summon its turbo four. Fuel economy figures haven't been announced yet.

We will learn more about the Mercedes-Benz A250e in the weeks leading up to its global debut at the 2019 Frankfurt auto show. The same powertrain could make its way into the A-Class Sedan, the CLA, and the GLB, among other models, but Mercedes hasn't announced plans to sell plug-in compacts in the United States.

Photo by Ronan Glon.

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