Before it dipped a petite toe in showrooms, the CLA was a can't-miss hit: a sexpot of a Mercedes for barely $30,000. The Benz mostly backs up the hype with a legit luxury interior and 208 horsepower from a 2.0-liter turbo 4. To blow minds and budgets, the AMg adds AWd and the most powerful 4-cylinder in series production ever: 355 ponies from a 2.0-liter twin turbo. [$30,825 (CLA250)/$48,375 (CLA45 AMG); mbusa.com]
The 2014 Adventure Issue
From Iceland's Highway 1 to Utah's Canyonlands, an epic itinerary for modern explorers.
Plus: Building a Bigger Action Hero
ON NEWSSTANDS NOW
Duke Lacrosse and the Fog of Scandal
How Thailand's Most Notorious Prison Became a Fight Club
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