Mercedes-AMG Hybrid Hypercar Takes ‘Ring’ Record

Mercedes-AMG has snatched the lap record for a road legal car at the infamous Nürburgring-Nordschleife circuit with its hybrid hypercar despite mixed weather conditions.

The Mercedes-AMG One, in standard customer trim, brings Formula 1 hybrid-drive technology from the racetrack to the road for the first time. With one combustion engine and four electric motors, the E Performance hybrid delivers a total of 1,048bhp, with the top speed capped at 218mph.

This was enough to see the car break the previous records by 8-seconds of the 12.9-mile forested track with bumps, jumps and banking. In the hands of DTM racer Maro Engel, the car set the new record time of 6:35.183 minutes.

The other motorsport technology ranges from the carbon monocoque and carbon body to the engine/transmission unit as a stressed member and active aerodynamics to the push-rod chassis. It also features the fully variable AMG Performance 4MATIC+ all‑wheel drive with a hybrid-driven rear axle and electrically driven front axle with torque vectoring.

For the record drive, the maximum camber values within the delivery tolerance were selected. Engel chose the “Race Plus” driving program. This means active, maximum possible aerodynamics, tight chassis tuning, vehicle lowering by 37mm at the front axle and 30mm at the rear axle and, of course, full power from all motors. The Drag Reduction System (DRS) is activated by the driver by pressing a button on the steering wheel. This retracts the front louvres on the wings as well as the upper aero element of the two-stage rear wing. If the system detects deceleration or a certain degree of lateral acceleration, the aero elements extend again.

Energy management technology also aided the record bid with Engel deploying the four-stage Energy Flow Control (EFC) which lets off the gas a little earlier in some sections, known as “lift and coast”. In addition, he also used energy recovery in the braking phases. Thus, even on the long Döttinger Höhe, the high-performance battery still offered enough power for a 210mph top speed.

Despite the performance the car claims fuel consumption weighted, combined of 24.5mpg (20.4mpg US), CO2-emissions weighted, combined at 198 g/km and electricity consumption weighted, combined at 32 kWh/62 miles. After the record lap, Engel said: “I didn’t expect that we would be able to set such a lap time with these track conditions. In some crucial areas of the track, it hadn’t dried completely yet and was therefore tricky. It was definitely something very special to drive this incredible car on the Ring.”

— Paul Myles is a seasoned automotive journalist based in Europe. Follow him on Twitter @Paulmyles_

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