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Paris show: Mercedes-AMG to go super-PHEV

Fiery mix of V8 and electricity to power 600kW Mercedes-AMG PHEV

3 Oct 2018


MERCEDES-AMG’S move into plug-in hybrid vehicles will start with a 600kW bang in 2020 when it plans to launch a powertrain that will mix AMG’s most powerful V8 engine with an electric motor and in-house designed high-performance battery for hypercar performance.
Fitted to AMG’s newly released four-door GT sports coupe, the powertrain will be a Jekyll and Hyde affair, capable of meekly covering commuting distances on electricity, cruising on petrol V8 power or belting out racecar performance with the combined power sources working in unison from opposite ends of the vehicle.
Mercedes-AMG chairman Tobias Moers confirmed the project to GoAuto at the Paris motor show, saying the powertrain would match the newly announced 470kW 4.0-litre bi-turbo V8 from the upcoming GTS63 Edition One with an electric motor producing more than 100kW for combined power of about 600kW.
He said he expected the car to arrive on the market by 2020, and to be among the first electrified models in the AMG line-up.
Mr Moers said AMG was concentrating on developing hybridised cars produced with AMG technology, rather than pure electric vehicles, at least initially.
He said technologies taken from formula one and applied to the Project One supercar – now dubbed AMG One – would also be applied to future AMG PHEV cars.
These could include electric turbocharging, high-performance batteries, drive control software and battery management systems.
“AMG is going to move to a performance hybrid solution with new programs by 2020,” he said. “This is going to be purpose-designed for AMG as performance hardware because our requirements for battery technology are totally different from that of Mercedes.
“We are not talking about necessarily about long-range hybrid; we are talking about performance hybrid. 
“So you have to take care of your battery technology regarding cooling, regarding how you treat your cells, how you manage the battery management system in co-operation with electric driving … so everything regarding electric powertrain at AMG is done at AMG.”
The batteries will use AMG’s own technology taken from Formula One, potentially giving the German brand a jump on competitors.
These batteries are fast to charge and quick to discharge, in line with the requirement of high driving performance.
Mr Moers said ultimately AMG would move to pure electric cars “because otherwise we are not in the business any more.”
However, AMG would not modify cars such as Mercedes’ new EQC. Rather, it will build purpose-built EVs at AMG.
“We know what is going on in the sportscar and performance segment and we see a lot of competitors moving on electric-driven cars,” he said.
“We will too. For now, we are working on hybridisation.”

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