Mercedes-Benz is once again demonstrating its capability as the driving force behind innovation in the automobile industry at the 63rd International Motor Show in Frankfurt, Germany. With the Vision S 500 Plug-in HYBRID, which is also making its debut in Frankfurt, Mercedes-Benz shows that there is a future for large and luxurious automobiles. The technology vehicle for the innovative plug-in hybrid drive enables fuel consumption of only 3.2 litres of petrol per 100 kilometres and
a range of 30 kilometres solely on electric power. Two other Mercedes milestones on the road to zero-emission mobility are the B‑Class F-CELL, which uses clean fuel cell technology to achieve a range of roughly 400 kilometres and will go into production before the end of 2009, and the BlueZERO E-CELL PLUS concept car, which has a total range of 600 kilometres thanks to the range extender. Rounding out the program are new additions to the GLK family as well as innovations in the Guard program and in relation to the Viano. Mercedes-Benz is picking up where it left off after its well-received appearance at the 2007 IAA and is sending numerous positive signals regarding the future of the automobile.
“No other car maker is as well positioned overall when it comes to meeting the customers' expectations for the individual, sustainable mobility of the future,” says Dr. Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars. “Our aim is to remain the driving force behind innovation in the automobile industry. In keeping with this aim, we continue to invest large sums in research and development. We have the strategy and the appropriate technology, and we already have a large number of fascinating and environment-friendly vehicles on the market today.”
The new E‑Class estate: Intelligent (e)state-of-the-art
From November 2009, Mercedes-Benz will be expanding its family of E‑Class vehicles by adding another striking model: the new E‑Class estate. Just like the saloon and coupe, the new estate combines individualistic design with exemplary safety and outstanding comfort, quality and functionality. The new E‑Class marks the debut of a number of technical innovations which no other car in the world in this category is able to offer - from drowsiness detection to automatic emergency braking when an accident is recognised as imminent, and from Adaptive Highbeam Assist to the Active Bonnet. Naturally the new estate features all these innovations. In addition, it also features air suspension with self-levelling at the rear as standard as well as unique innovations with regard to the further optimisation of load compartment management features.
Dieter Zetsche says: “The renewal of the E‑Class family - the ‘heart’ of the Mercedes-Benz brand - couldn’t have happened at a better time. Its success shows that Mercedes brand values such as safety and extraordinary comfort combined with timeless elegance and maximum efficiency and are particularly attractive, especially in turbulent economic times. The E‑Class is thus a versatile and persuasive ambassador for the innovative power of the Mercedes-Benz brand.”
Says Dr. Klaus Maier, Executive Vice President Sales and Marketing Mercedes-Benz Cars: “The E‑Class estate has been the most practical way to drive a luxury-segment Mercedes since 1977, with more than one million customers having chosen our premium estate since then. With its innovative safety technology, clear advances in fuel efficiency and exemplary functionality, the fifth generation of the estate will write a new chapter in this success story.
E 63 AMG estate: The high-performance estate
The new E 63 AMG estate occupies pole position in the premium estate segment. Its AMG 6.3 litre V8 engine puts out 386 kW/525 hp and accelerates the estate car from zero to 100 km/h in 4.6 seconds. With a boot capacity of 1,950 litres, the new E 63 AMG estate is an extraordinary combination of dynamic performance, great utility and high efficiency.
SLS AMG: The new Gullwing model from Mercedes-Benz
The Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG embodies automotive fascination and high tech of the highest order. The super sports car boasts a purist design, systematic lightweight design, superior driving dynamics and exemplary safety. All this is made possible by an unparalleled technology package comprising a lightweight aluminium space-frame bodyshell with gullwing doors; the AMG 6.3 litre, front-mid V8 engine with 420 kW/571 hp peak output, 650 Nm of torque and dry sump lubrication; the seven-speed dual-clutch transmission in a transaxle configuration; and the sports chassis with aluminium double-wishbone suspension. This combination guarantees driving dynamics of the highest order. The car’s ideal weight distribution between the front and rear axles (47 to 53 percent respectively) and its low centre of gravity emphasize the outstanding sports car concept. The Gullwing model accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in 3.8 seconds and has a top speed of 317 km/h. The combined fuel consumption stands at 13.2 litres per 100 kilometres (all values provisional).
Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG with electric drive
Mercedes-Benz is also presenting the electric SLS AMG eDrive concept car with a zero-emission high-tech drive at the IAA 2009. The Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG with electric drive transforms the vision of powerful and locally emission-free super sports cars into reality thanks to an innovative drive system. Powerful forward thrust is provided by four electric motors with a combined peak output of 392 kW and a maximum torque of 880 Nm. The four electric motors are positioned near the wheels, substantially reducing the unsprung masses compared to wheel-hub motors. One transmission per axle transmits the power. This intelligent all-wheel drive system allows dynamically optimised power transmission without any losses by means of torque vectoring - in other words the specific, targeted acceleration of individual wheels. In its first phase, the SLS AMG with electric drive incorporates a liquid-cooled, high-voltage lithium-ion battery of modular design with an energy content of 48 kWh and a capacity of 40 Ah. The 400-volt battery is charged by means of targeted regeneration during braking whilst the car is being driven. The “electric” Gullwing model accelerates from zero to 100 km/h in around 4 seconds, putting it on the same high level as the SLS AMG with the 420 kW/571 hp AMG 6.3-litre V8 engine.
Vision S 500 Plug-in HYBRID: The luxury class on the road to the three-litre car
Shortly after the successful market launch of the S 400 HYBRID, currently the most fuel-efficient luxury saloon with a petrol engine, Mercedes-Benz will be presenting a “three-litre car” in the luxury segment, the Vision S 500 Plug-in HYBRID, at the 63rd IAA in Frankfurt. The technology vehicle demonstrating the future of the modular hybrid system from Mercedes-Benz boasts NEDC fuel consumption of only 3.2 litres of petrol per 100 kilometres. The vehicle can even cover up to 30 kilometres solely on electric power and thus entirely free of local emissions. With CO2 emissions of only 74 grams per 100 kilometres according to the NEDC, the test platform of the Mercedes development engineering in Sindelfingen demonstrates the viability of future S‑Class generations. The outstanding values are achieved through the combination of a plug-in hybrid drive with efficiency-enhancing BlueEFFICIENCY measures implemented in the vehicle. At the same time, the S 500 Plug-in HYBRID has all of the strengths that are typical of the S‑Class: premium comfort, extraordinary safety and superior performance. The drive system consists of three main components: a powerful V6 petrol engine with direct injection, a hybrid module with roughly 44 kW/60 hp and a lithium-ion battery with more than 10 kWh of storage capacity that can be recharged at charging stations. The Vision S 500 Plug-in HYBRID accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in 5.5 seconds.
“The Vision S 500 HYBRID is a new milestone on our path toward zero-emission mobility,” says Dr. Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars. “It is a luxurious and safe S‑Class vehicle that offers superior driving performance while at the same time consuming less fuel than current compacts. All of this shows that our top models will also be able to combine automotive fascination with responsibility for the environment.”
Mercedes-Benz B‑Class F-CELL: 100 percent driving pleasure, zero emissions
Mercedes-Benz is putting its first series-produced fuel cell car on the road before the end of the year: the B‑Class F-CELL. The environmentally friendly electric car boasts superior performance comparable to a 2.0 litre petrol engine while still being practical enough for daily use. The zero-emission drive system consumes the energy equivalent of 3.3 litres of diesel per 100 kilometres (NEDC). Production of the B‑Class F-CELL will commence in late 2009 on a small scale.
The fuel cell vehicle offers everything that people expect from a Mercedes-Benz: High comfort and safety as well as no reduction in interior space and boot capacity. Customers still get to have fun driving, too, as the electric motor puts out 100 kW/136 hp and peak torque of 290 Nm. It has a range of roughly 400 kilometres.
BlueZERO E-CELL PLUS: Piggy-backed for more range
The near-series Mercedes-Benz Concept BlueZERO E-CELL PLUS electric car combines environment-friendly electric mobility in the city with unrestricted suitability for long-distance driving. This is made possible by the combination of the battery-electric drive with a combustion engine. Putting out 50 kW, the compact three-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine is installed in the area of the rear axle and can charge the battery while the car is being driven. The efficient layout of the system as a whole together with the CO2 bonus for the battery-electric driving mode reduces the vehicle’s emissions to only 32 grams of CO2 per kilometre. The range extender gives the BlueZERO E-CELL PLUS a total range of up to 600 kilometres, with 100 kilometres thereof solely under electric power and thus free of local emissions.
The 100 kW electric motor (70 kW continuous) with a maximum torque of 320 Nm accelerates the BlueZERO E-CELL PLUS from zero to 100 km/h in less than eleven seconds. Top speed is electronically limited to 150 km/h in the interest of optimal range and energy efficiency.
Measuring only 4.22 metres in length, the BlueZERO model combines compact exterior dimensions with a spacious and versatile interior and cargo space. The vehicle’s five full-size seats, approximately 450 kilograms of payload, and more than 500 litres of cargo capacity make it a suitable family car.
The BlueZERO E-CELL PLUS employs the unique sandwich floor concept known from the A-Class and the B-Class. The key drive components are installed in the vehicle’s underbody in such a way that they take up little space, ensure a good centre of gravity, and are maximally protected. “Our modular system permits different drive configurations for each customer requirement,” says Dr. Thomas Weber, the Daimler Board of Management Member responsible for Group Research and Mercedes-Benz Cars Development. “The improved sandwich floor platform serves as the perfect basis for a diverse range of vehicles with electric drives.”
New additions to the GLK family
With the all-wheel drive GLK 250 CDI 4MATIC Blue EFFICIENCY and the rear-wheel drive GLK 220 CDI BlueEFFICIENCY, Mercedes-Benz has added two attractive new vehicles to its line of compact SUVs and now has a total of six versions. The GLK 250 CDI 4MATIC Blue EFFICIENCY is equipped with the most powerful four-cylinder diesel engine (150 kW/204 hp, 500 Nm), permanent all-wheel drive and the 7G-TRONIC automatic transmission. It accelerates from zero to 100 km/h in 8.5 seconds on its way to a top speed of 213 km/h, yet the diesel boasts NEDC average fuel consumption of only 6.7 litres of diesel per 100 kilometres (combined consumption, preliminary figure). At the same time, it not only meets the EU5 emissions standard but also has the potential to fulfil the EU6 limits as well as the BIN 5 requirements in the USA.
The rear-wheel drive GLK 220 CDI BlueEFFICIENCY consumes even less fuel - from 6.0 litres of diesel per 100 kilometres. The version equipped with a six-speed manual transmission boasts good pulling power and, like the more powerful variant, displays an exemplary degree of cultivation for a four-cylinder diesel engine. Peak torque of 400 Nm is available over a wide rev range from 1,400 to 2,800 rpm. In everyday driving situations, the vehicle can therefore be operated very economically at low engine speeds. The rear-wheel drive vehicle sprints from zero to 100 km/h in 8.5 seconds and reaches a top speed of 205 km/h.
Mercedes-Benz InCar Hotspot: wireless Internet access in a vehicle
Mercedes-Benz offers for the first time wireless and unrestricted Internet access in a vehicle. With the Mercedes-Benz InCar Hotspot, the data signals are received via the vehicle antenna. A special WLAN router and a data-enabled SIM card process the signals and provide wireless Internet access also during the drive. Up to three WLAN-enabled end devices (e.g. laptop, mobile) can be connected to the Internet simultaneously. The users thus have access to the “World Wide Web” with no site restrictions. The Mercedes-Benz InCar Hotspot system supports the particularly fast HSDPA transmission standard, as well as UMTS and GSM/EDGE. From October 2009, the Mercedes-Benz InCar Hotspot will be available in the new E‑Class and S‑Class*. A vehicle featuring this equipment is on display at the Mercedes stand at the IAA.
*S-Class from December 2009