Is this really for the road?
Today, Mercedes-AMG is taking off the wraps off one of the most anticipated cars of the year-the F1-powered Project One hypercar. "It combines our design philosophy of Sensual Purity with the performance of our Formula 1 racing cars and is the ideal embodiment of Performance Luxury".
The new auto utilises technology straight from the F1 cars driven by Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas in the 2017 season. The transmission is brand-new for the Project One and can either be used in automatic mode or via paddle shifters. And the turbocharger-or MGU-H-is electrically driven, recuperating energy from the exhaust that can also be sent direct to the rear wheels for an extra 120kW (161hp). Behind the seats are two small compartments which can hold small items, while a heads-up display also comes as standard to ensure optimum visiblity. It's functional - "Formula One For Two' say Mercedes". A third 160hp eclectic motor is connected to the V6 engine's crankshaft.
That's partly because AMGs account for 20 per cent of Mercedes-Benz sales here, placing Australia second only to Canada in terms of AMG market penetration. To transmit the total 500 kilowatt output to the rear axle, Mercedes-AMG chose an eight-speed automated manual gearbox.
The Project One's powertrain comprises a turbocharged 1.6-litre V6 petrol engine and four electric motors. But while most hypercars have one or two electric motors, this one has four, borrowing directly from the W08 F1 auto.
But pragmatic is exactly what the Project One is, at least according to Mercedes-AMG boss Tobias Moers.
MOTOR will bring you a closer look at the Mercedes-AMG Project One in the near future. The last Merc supercar to have all-electric drive was the SLS of yore.
"The 'ONE has been optimized for street use, displaying Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires (19" in the front, 20" in the rear), and is created to be used with widely-available premium gas, not racing fuel. Within these wheels are carbon-ceramic brakes.
Underpinning the range-topping AMG is a race-grade chassis featuring an adjustable multilink set with pushrods both front and rear - the latter attached directly to the engine block. The body is a carbon-fiber monocoque, there's a tail just like on the F1 single-seaters, along with a roof scoop to feed the mid-mounted 1.6-liter turbocharged V6 engine, capable of reaching up to 11,000 rpm.
Use the Race Start function and Mercedes claims 0-124mph in 'under six seconds'.
As some kind of reference, the LaFerrari goes from 0-100kph in 2.4sec and 0-200kph within 7sec before calling it the day at a similar 350kph.
The Project One is a combined effort of AMG in Affalterbach, Germany, its High Performance Powertrain sister company located in Brixworth and the F1 team in Brackley.
It will cost $5.1 million in Australia - including $1.1 million in Luxury Car Tax alone - when it arrives in 2019.
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