Mercedes-Benz AMG Vision Gran Turismo conceptEnlarge Photo
In July we heard rumors that Mercedes-AMG planned to enter the hypercar war with a new model to mark its 50th anniversary in 2017.
Citing a source within the Mercedes AMG Formula One team, Evo on Tuesday reported that the car is coming—complete with an engine derived from the unit fitted to the F1 racer driven by Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg this season.
The source said the car is in its final stages of design and should be revealed in 2017. Only 50 units are planned—again highlighting AMG’s 50th anniversary—and the first deliveries should take place in 2018, the same year the AM-RB 001 hypercar developed by Aston Martin and Red Bull Racing will hit the road. The showdown is going to be epic.
Mercedes AMG’s 2016 F1 car, the W07 Hybrid, has proven unstoppable on the race track. It’s won every race this season apart from May’s Spanish Grand Prix where Hamilton and Rosberg crashed into each other.
Mercedes AMG W07 Hybrid 2016 Formula One car power unitEnlarge Photo
The engine fitted to the W07 Hybrid is a 1.6-liter turbocharged V-6. Modifications—expected to be increased displacement, a second turbocharger and improved cooling—required for road use is reportedly being handled by Mercedes AMG High Performance Powertrains, the British unit that builds the F1 engines. Recall, former Mercedes R&D boss Thomas Weber said in 2014 that Mercedes AMG High Performance Powertrains would be tapped for future road car development.
Just as in the F1 race car, the V-6 will be paired with an electric drive system in the hypercar to boost output. Power from the V-6 alone could end up as high as 900 hp, according to the source, with the electric drive system, sending power to the front wheels, adding anywhere from 100 to 600 hp. We’ve heard that one of the goals for the car is a 1:1 power to weight ratio (when comparing hp to kg), just like Koenigsegg’s One:1 and Aston Martin’s AM-RB 001.
Aerodynamics will play a huge role in the design of the car, which almost certainly will feature a mid-engine layout. Expect to see elements from the F1 car molded to suit something akin to a Le Mans prototype. Construction will be mostly carbon fiber to keep weight down and there's talk that Lotus Engineering will help fine-tune the handling. Performance estimates, meanwhile, include a 0-60 mph time of less than 2.5 seconds and a top speed in excess of 220 mph.
Pictured above is a Mercedes concept unveiled in 2013 for the Vision Gran Turismo challenge.