The new Mercedes A-Class is quite different from the original fuddy-duddy family MPV of old, with Mercedes totally revamping it to appeal to a younger audience who want to get on the premium car ladder. So now the A-Class is premium hatchback rivals for the likes of the Audi A3, BMW 1 Series and Volkswagen Golf. Looking nothing like the car it replaces, the current A-Class has sporty dimensions and a much lower, sleeker roof. The engine range includes the first Mercedes car to emit less than the magic, road-tax-free 100g/km of CO2, the A180 CDI diesel, and an entry-level BlueEFFICIENCY petrol model. The best performance from the main specifications comes from the A250 208bhp 2.0-litre turbo version, but the recent A45 350bhp AMG model takes it to another level – if you can handle it. Prices are on par with the Audi A3 and BMW 1 Series, but the extras list gets pretty expensive and can push the cost through the roof pretty quickly.