Contributing Monkie G Living Staff Monkies
Published on March 4, 2008
After months of showing various eco concept vehicles, Mercedes-Benz has announced their plans to hit production with their S400 BlueHybrid. And from the information provided by the manufacturer, I’m guessing Mercedes fans will be pleased with the car’s style and non-sacrificing environmental benefits.
If no one beats M-B to the punch, the S400 (which features a Mercedes 3.5L V-6 gas engine with a 15kW electric generator/motor) is likely to be the world’s first passenger car to use a lithium ion battery.
It’s this breakthrough battery technology by Daimler AG that makes the S400 possible. According to Mercedes’ press release, “The Stuttgart-based automaker is the world’s first manufacturer to have succeeded in adapting lithium-ion technology to the demanding requirements of automotive applications. Until now, the technology has been used primarily in consumer electronics… This important technology was possible thanks to 25 patents held by Daimler.”
Daimler, who’s been working on the battery since 1992, hopes the groundbreaking battery will be a decisive factor for the future success of the automotive industry. Two of the lithium-ion’s selling points are its compact size, which allows it to be mounted under the hood instead of hogging trunk space, and its performance advantage over the conventional nickel-metal hydride battery.
Specs on the BlueHybrid (which Mercedes is calling “the world’s most economical luxury sedan”) say it consumes only 7.9 liters of fuel per 100 km, accelerates from zero to 100 km/h in 7.3 seconds and can reach a top speed of 250 km/h. Which is exactly what you want in a Mercedes.
Look for the S400 in 2009 in Europe and North America.