Mercedes-AMG’s Formula 1 car for the road is entering a new stage of development.
The performance arm of Mercedes-Benz has announced its 735kW (1000hp) Project One hybrid hypercar has graduated to performance testing, with several prototypes doing laps at the company’s proving ground in Immendingen, Germany.
“Along with the dynamic test programme and some refinements to the car’s driveability, development work is also focused on its active aerodynamics,” says Mercedes-AMG in its media release.
“The complex interplay between the various active components such as the louvres, the air outlets in the front fenders or the large rear aerofoil is now confirming its effectiveness even outside the wind tunnel as a means of delivering the car’s exceptional lateral dynamics.”
In addition to dynamic testing at Immendingen, the AMG One continues powertrain development at Mercedes-AMG’s headquarters in Affalterbach, Germany, with the next step of testing to be conducted on the northern loop of the famed Nurburgring race track.
First revealed at the 2017 Frankfurt motor show, the Mercedes-AMG Project One, set to be called just the ‘One’ when it enters production, will be limited to just 275 units globally and is pitched as a road-legal version of the Petronas Formula One race car famously driven by Lewis Hamilton.
Power in the space-age race car for the road comes from a 1.6-litre turbocharged V6 hybrid system based on the powertrain fitted to Hamilton’s racer.
In order to make the motorsport engine compatible with commercially-available fuel and better reliability, the company has previously stated the race car’s rev limit of 11,000rpm will be “significantly” reduced in the AMG One, though its 735kW total power output is nothing to be sneezed at.
The performance targets are equally as bonkers. Mercedes-AMG has yet to officially indicate a 0-100km/h time, but it has said previously the AMG One will hit 200km/h from rest in under 6.0 seconds on its way to a top speed “beyond 350km/h“.
The AMG One pairs its 1.6-litre turbo V6 to three electric motors – one for each front wheel, one on the rear axle – and a lithium-ion battery pack of an unknown capacity. At its production reveal Mercedes-AMG claimed the One would be capable of driving up to 25km on electric power alone.
Drive is channelled through all four wheels using the aforementioned electrically-driven front axle and hybrid rear, assisted by a torque vectoring system and an AMG Speedshift eight-speed automated manual transmission.
According to Mercedes-AMG, the eight-speed transmission is a bespoke unit developed in-house, featuring both full automatic and manual models, as well as steering-mounted paddle shifters.
You may be lucky enough to one day see one on Australian roads, too, with the company confirming in 2018 that eight units would be delivered across the Australian and New Zealand markers – exact figures haven’t been disclosed.
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