50 Years of AMG — Vii

The fu­ture of high-per­for­mance un­rav­elled

Car India - - CONTENTS - Story: Jim Gorde

How do you en­cap­su­late al­most 50 years of high-per­for­mance en­gi­neer­ing ex­cel­lence with a cen­tury of her­itage in a brand-new car that re­places a soul­ful trib­ute to an icon? An icon not just for Mercedes-Benz but for the au­to­mo­tive world in its to­tal­ity. The SLS AMG paid trib­ute to the mind-bend­ing 300SL Gull­wing. And the Mercedes-AMG GT stepped in as its suc­ces­sor. And, now, Mercedes-AMG have pre­sented the ul­ti­mate in­car­na­tion of the high-per­for­mance ve­hi­cle, com­bin­ing the two worlds of For­mula 1 rac­ing and their road car pro­gramme, the Project One.


Bring­ing F1 tech­nol­ogy and en­gi­neer­ing to the road is one thing, but mak­ing a road-le­gal F1 car? Now that’s some­thing few man­u­fac­tur­ers have at­tempted and fewer still have achieved.

With the Project One, Mercedes-AMG are giv­ing their F1 car a new lease on life. The 1.6-litre tur­bocharged V6 petrol hy­brid power-unit, in­clud­ing the mo­tor gen­er­a­tor units for heat and ki­netic en­ergy (MGU-H and MGU-K), and the elec­tric drive sys­tem, all make it to the road car, al­beit tuned for much longer life than just five race week­ends. With about 750 PS from the com­bus­tion en­gine and about 240 kW (326 PS) from the elec­tric mo­tors driv­ing the front wheels, the peak com­bined out­put is a stun­ning 1,000+ PS with the in­stant torque from the two elec­tric mo­tors (plus two elec­tric mo­tors, one 90-kW and one 120-kW, on the en­gine for turbo as­sist and power sup­ple­men­ta­tion) pro­vid­ing for stag­ger­ing ac­cel­er­a­tion times and a top speed ex­ceed­ing 350 km/h. Un­like the For­mula 1 en­gine which has a rev-lim­iter set at 15,000 rpm, the Project One’s power-unit red-lines at a lower 11,000 rpm, to take into ac­count en­gine life and Su­per Plus fuel.

Fur­ther­more, the en­gi­neers have man­aged to keep the weight of the mid-en­gined two-seater sports car down to around 1,300 kg. Only 275 will be made, and, we be­lieve, are al­ready spo­ken for.


Mark­ing a de­par­ture from trans­mis­sions of the past, the new ‘9SS’ Mercedes-AMG Speed­shift multi-clutch trans­mis­sion packs nine gear ra­tios that fur­ther op­ti­mise power de­liv­ery based on ex­actly what is re­quired of the sys­tem at the time. The nine gears al­low the en­gine to spin in a band ide­ally suited to de­liver max­i­mum ef­fi­ciency — by shift­ing up early to keep it in higher over­drive gears, or to keep it smack dab in the mid­dle of the power band. It can also down­shift through sev­eral gears in an in­stant to pro­vide a surge of ac­cel­er­a­tion; for in­stance, when a sud­den quick over­tak­ing ma­noeu­vre needs to be per­formed. The new E 63 and S 63 put it to good use.

Ul­ti­mat e Po wer: Mercedes-AMG S-Class

The new range of Mercedes-AMG ‘63’ cars are ar­riv­ing in a phased man­ner. The new M177 wet-sump BiTurbo V8 and the M178 dry-sump ver­sion have led to their in­tro­duc­tion in the new E-Class and S-Class. With power out­put lev­els of the ‘63 S’ at 612 PS, the new V8 matches the old ‘65’ BiTurbo V12’s out­put. That en­gine, the M275, has been re­placed with a heav­ily re­vised ver­sion of the M277, called the M279. In the new ‘65’ line of cars, it puts out 630 PS and an elec­tron­i­cally gov­erned 1,000 Nm of torque.

The new Mercedes-AMG S 63 puts out its prodi­gious 612 PS out­put from just 5,500 rpm, with the huge 900 Nm of peak torque com­ing in at just 2,750 rpm. When you have to haul two tonnes to 100 km/h in 3.5 sec­onds or so, the en­gine re­spon­si­ble must meet some in­vari­ably high de­mands and ex­pec­ta­tions. AMG’s prin­ci­ple of ‘one man, one en­gine’ en­sures that a high level of spe­cial­i­sa­tion goes into the craft­ing of each pow­er­plant, and, as is tra­di­tion, the plaque of the en­gine builder adorns the en­gine on its cover.

The BiTurbo V8, part of a mod­u­lar en­gine fam­ily, al­lows for a scal­able level of per­for­mance to suit all ap­pli­ca­tions. Whether it’s a fam­ily sedan, a full­bod­ied es­tate, an SUV, or even a su­per-lux­ury drop-top con­vert­ible grand tourer, there is no short­age of power, no want for more, be­cause the sheer might of the mo­tor shines through, com­ple­mented in no small por­tion by AMG’s in­cred­i­ble suspension setup and tun­ing prow­ess.

AMG’s prin­ci­ple of ‘one man, one en­gine’ en­sures a high level of spe­cial­i­sa­tion

Sch­neller: Mercedes-AMG E 63 S 4MATIC+

The Mercedes E-Class is one of the brand’s best-sell­ing mod­els and for good rea­son. It bal­ances lux­ury and high-per­for­mance with ev­ery­day prac­ti­cal­ity and ex­tended us­abil­ity, made fur­ther ac­ces­si­ble with a choice of en­gines and a num­ber of body styles. The saloon and the es­tate, how­ever, de­liver cross-con­ti­nen­tal tour­ing abil­ity in com­fort, and also have a se­lec­tion of ex­tremely po­tent AMG pow­er­trains to get the job done.

The E 63 and E 63 S, both of­fered with AMG-tuned 4MAT IC+ in­tel­li­gent all-wheeldrive, de­liver out­stand­ing power with even heftier torque out­puts, mak­ing short work of both speed and dis­tance. Not only do they get up to speed quickly, their po­tency en­sures miles are munched and dis­missed with un­be­liev­able ease. With 571 PS and 750 Nm, the E 63 doesn’t seem to be any­thing to be taken lightly. If that wasn’t enough, the E 63 S, with its 612 PS and 850 Nm, makes you ques­tion the need for a sports car or even, in fact, a su­per­car. With a sub-four-se­cond 0-100 km/h dash, even for a big es­tate, there is ab­so­lutely noth­ing on the power front that will ever feel lack­ing by any imag­in­able mea­sure.

Ev­ery­day Thrill: Mercedes-AMG C 63 S

Pack your bags, load the b oot, fire up the V8! The AMG C 63 S presents it­self as the an­swer to all the ques­tions you’ve asked and haven’t yet asked. It’s not of­fered with the 6,208-cc M159 be­he­moth of an en­gine any more. Even so, the new BiTurbo M177 4.0-litre mas­ter­ful V8 makes 510 PS; a lot more than the 457 of­fered by the bari­tone big-bore. Yes, there were more edi­tions — the 507 and the Black Se­ries Coupé — and they’re con­fined to the glo­ri­ous past. The new C 63 S more than makes up with its huge power and mas­sive, effortless torque — 700 Nm of it — avail­able low down. Un­like the E-Class, the C is rear-wheel-drive, and with AMG’s Dy­namic Se­lect drive modes, it means you can have a civilised un­stop­pable tourer in ‘Com­fort’ mode, or a blar­ing, track-ready beast in ‘Sport+’. Fancy a com­bi­na­tion of traits? The ‘In­di­vid­ual’ drive mode lets you con­fig­ure the de­sired re­sponse of each as­pect of in­put.

Next-level: Mercedes-AMG GT Con­cept

Fol­low­ing the suc­cess of the two-door Mercedes-AMG GT line, the po­ten­tial for a four-door coupé grand tour­ing car was too much to ig­nore. En­ter the third au­tonomously de­vel­oped AMG model: the GT Con­cept. This four-door grand tourer not only makes AMG per­for­mance ac­ces­si­ble for more pas­sen­gers, but com­bines the in­cred­i­ble V8 with an elec­tric driv­e­line for a high-per­for­mance hy­brid. In its last level of de­vel­op­ment, it is ca­pa­ble of 600 kW (815 PS), a 0-100 km/h time of less than three sec­onds, as well as im­pres­sive driv­ing range. The ‘EQ Power+’ badg­ing points to the fu­ture of elec­tri­fi­ca­tion; also seen on the Mercedes-AMG Petronas For­mula 1 race cars.

AMG Per­for­mance Cen­tres

Mak­ing high per­for­mance more ac­ces­si­ble to po­ten­tial buy­ers is as im­por­tant as giv­ing bud­ding en­thu­si­asts an op­por­tu­nity to wit­ness first-hand the won­ders of mod­ern en­gi­neer­ing. Those who are awe-struck to­day will be­come buy­ers to­mor­row. AMG Per­for­mance Cen­tres are spread across the globe, with more than 400 cen­tres across 40 coun­tries. In­dia has seven Per­for­mance Cen­tres. With an im­mer­sive ex­pe­ri­ence promised from in­ter­ac­tive mod­ules, cus­tomers and en­thu­si­asts are treated to the dis­tinc­tive sounds and fea­tures of the var­i­ous AMG mod­els on of­fer.

There is ab­so­lutely noth­ing on the power front that will ever feel lack­ing by any imag­in­able mea­sure

Mercedes-AMG F1

Fol­low­ing the re­turn of the Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 team to the sport, the Sil­ver Ar­rows be­came a dom­i­nant force in the 2014 sea­son, claim­ing three back-to-back dou­ble ti­tles — driv­ers’ and con­struc­tors’ — leav­ing the rest be­hind by some mar­gin.

This year, with Ros­berg re­tir­ing from F1, the team sees a Finn part­ner­ing the three-time world cham­pion, Lewis Hamil­ton. Out­stand­ing as his per­for­mances were in the Wil­liams-Mercedes car over the past few sea­sons, Valt­teri Bot­tas was a clear choice.

The sea­son’s pro­gres­sion has seen the ex­cite­ment in the cham­pi­onship taken to an­other level. Their Ital­ian ri­vals have upped their game and pose a proper chal­lenge. How­ever, both Mercedes-AMG driv­ers, Hamil­ton and Bot­tas, re­main cham­pi­onship chal­lengers. Hamil­ton also sur­passed the all-time record for the most num­ber of pole po­si­tions when he cap­tured his 69th pole po­si­tion at the Ital­ian Grand Prix in Monza in stun­ning fashion, go­ing on to win the race and take the lead in the world cham­pi­onship.

There have got to be far too many in­tense mo­ments for Toto Wolff and Niki Lauda as the sea­son pro­gresses in­creas­ingly in their favour.

( Be­low) One of the very first AMG Per­for­mance Cen­tres in Ger­many

Right) AMG Per­for­mance Cen­tre in Chen­nai show­cases the GT R

( Above) E 63 S blurs the line be­tween ev­ery­day saloon and su­per­car

( Be­low) 510-PS V8 C 63 S is truly an ev­ery­day sports saloon

( Above) AMG Speed­shift nine-speed ’box op­ti­mises power de­liv­ery to suit ef­fi­ciency or ac­cel­er­a­tion Busi­ness saloon or power-slid­ing mon­ster at the flip of a switch ( Left) S 63 bal­ances su­per­lux­ury tour­ing with ag­gres­sive per­for­mance

( Above) Hy­brid F1 power-unit con­sists of one 750-PS petrol en­gine and four elec­tric mo­tors for a 1,000+ PS peak out­put

Pho­tog­ra­phy: Daim­ler, DPPI

Lewis Hamil­ton is a strong con­tender to win the 2017 world driver’s ti­tle

( Above) F1’s hy­brid tech is now be­ing di­rectly used on road cars

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