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Merc hypercar brings F1 to the road

Merc hypercar brings F1 to the road

David Whinyates, 2017-09-12

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YOU too could drive like Lewis Hamilton if Mercedes-Benz' plans for its sensational F1-inspired and engineered Project ONE concept car ever come to fruition.

Being given its world première at the Frankfurt International Motor Show, the sleek, two-seater supersports show car takes fully-fledged Formula 1 hybrid technology from the race track to the road almost without compromise.

Produced to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Mercedes' AMG performance brand, like Hamilton's Mercedes F1 car, it's a high-performance hybrid which is said to produce over 1.000hp and to reach top speeds of more than 350 km/h with acceleration from standstill to 200kph in a mere six seconds.

Adapting advanced Formula One technology for day-to-day use has involved complex development work and was carried out in close cooperation with the F1 experts at the company's UK-based powertrains facility and the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport team.

The high-performance plug-in hybrid drive system comes directly from F1 and consists of a 1.6 litre, V6, hybrid, turbocharged combustion engine plus four electric motors driving all four wheels via a new automated, eight-speed manual transmission.

According to Ola Källenius, R&D chief of parent company Daimler AG: "The Mercedes-AMG Project ONE is the first Formula 1 car with MOT approval.

"With a system output of over 1,000 hp and a top speed beyond 350 km/h this hypercar handles exactly as it looks: it takes your breath away."

But will it ever go into production?

Well, maybe, but not necessarily in quite such sensational form, reckons Tobias Moers, head of management at Mercedes-AMG, who says: "The concept car gives specific indications of what to expect from the upcoming production model.

"The hypercar is the most ambitious project we have every undertaken. It marks yet another pinnacle of the successful, strategic development of Mercedes-AMG towards a performance and sports car brand.

"Project ONE raises the bar in terms of what is currently technologically feasible and, thanks to its combination of efficiency and performance, it represents an absolute benchmark. At the same time, Project ONE provides an outlook on how AMG will define driving performance in the future",

Sharing the Frankfurt limelight with the Concept ONE - albeit slightly overshadowed by the hypercar - is the Mercedes-Benz Concept EQA, which features electric motors at the front and rear to achieve a system output of over 200kW.

The drive characteristics can be altered by varying the permanent all-wheel drive's front to rear torque distribution.

The Concept EQA can be charged via induction or wallbox and is also ready for rapid charging. The vision for using public charging stations is "seamless charging": this Mercedesme-based service makes it easy to charge and pay at different charging stations.

Says Mercedes boss Dr Dieter Zetsche: "With the Concept EQA, our electric initiative is gathering pace: by 2022 Mercedes-Benz Cars will have more than ten all-electric vehicles on the market."

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