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Geneva show: Benz battery breakthrough

Green SUV: BlueTec GLK offers 165kW/560Nm, yet returns 5.9L/100km.

Mercedes reveals a BlueTec Hybrid-powered GLK at Geneva, among a host of green cars

11 Mar 2008

DAIMLER has made a breakthrough in battery technology, becoming the first car manufacturer to offer "patented integration" of a lithium-ion battery into a series-produced passenger car.

Unveiled at the Geneva motor show last week, the Mercedes-Benz S400 BlueHybrid will be the first to reach the market – next year, according to the company – with battery technology that offers a number of advantages over conventional nickel-metal hydride, including drastically reduced size and higher performance.

In this case, Daimler has achieved a weight/power ratio of 1900 Watts per litre for the entire battery.

4 center image From top: CLC350, SL63 AMG, C350 CGI Blue Efficiency and CLS350 CGI (bottom).

Daimler claims the breakthrough came once its engineers managed to fully integrate the lithium-ion battery in the vehicle’s climate control system, which ensures that it works at optimal system temperatures of between 15°C and 35°C.

This in turn provides conditions for a long service life, high ampere-hour efficiency and reliability (even at very low temperatures).

According to Benz, the 220kW/375Nm S400 BlueHybrid consumes 7.9L/100km and produces CO2 of 190g/km – low values for this premium class and enough for the manufacturer to herald it as the “world’s most economical luxury sedan – unrivalled by any gasoline, diesel or hybrid drive system offered by any competitor”. It can accelerate from 0-100km/h in 7.3 seconds.

Watch out for lithium-ion being introduced soon on a Mercedes diesel hybrid, such as the S300 BlueTec Hybrid – or the GLK BlueTec Hybrid, which was shown at Geneva last week to demonstrate its application on the company’s new compact SUV.

The GLK 2.2-litre four-cylinder hybrid produces an excellent 165kW and 560Nm, and darts from 0-100km/h in 7.3 seconds, yet returns just 5.9L/100km and emits 157g/km of CO2 – claimed to the be world’s lowest carbon dioxide emissions in the SUV segment.

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