Saturday, 20 August 2016

Is this the shape of things to come?

Is the Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6 the shape of things to come?
Designed at the outset as an electric car, the drive system has an output of 550 kW (750 bhp). The shallow underfloor battery allows a range of over 500 km according to the NEDC (over 200 miles according to EPA).

The large coupé, almost 6m in length, made its debut this week at Monterey Car Week held on the Monterey Peninsula, California. The final event tomorrow will be the Pebble Beach Concours D'Elégance.
Daimler AG says the Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6 represents the ultimate in luxury. The company’s copywriters exude: “The classic aesthetic proportions of the show car – the extremely long bonnet, the low roof line and the rearward positioning of the greenhouse – recall the aero coupés of days gone by. But this is not retro design – this is a reinterpretation of classic, aesthetic principles.”
"Our glamorous coupé, the Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6, represents the ultimate in contemporary luxury. It is hot and cool", states Gorden Wagener, head of design at Daimler AG. "With its intelligent appeal and reduced, technoid look, it perfectly embodies our design philosophy of sensual purity and our pursuit of aerodynamic efficiency".
So, we even have a new word: technoid.
A feature is provided by the gullwing doors, a hallmark Mercedes design element which has been brought up to date. They underline the sporty character of the vehicle's silhouette and feature innovatively designed aluminium trim. The exterior mirrors designed as cameras are supported on the wings.
Daimler claims “the extended, round ‘boat tail’ format of the Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6's rear recalls a luxury yacht, and narrow tail lights which emphasise the width of the vehicle are integrated in its outer edges. Above this sit the two extremely shallow rear windows (split window). Further distinctive features at the rear include the diffuser with aluminium frame and the air outlets behind the wheel arches.”
                                                 Emission-free driving
The side sills, illuminated by LED light strips, clearly underline the fact that the Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6 is designed as an electric car. Thanks to its four compact permanent magnet synchronous electric motors, it features all-wheel drive. The output of the drive system is 550 kW (750 hp).
The shallow underfloor battery has a usable capacity of some 80 kWh. This allows performance characteristics typical of a sports car (acceleration from 0‑100 km/h in under four seconds, top speed electronically governed at 250 km/h) as well as a range of over 500 km according to the NEDC (over 200 miles according to EPA).
Daimler adds that the quick-charge function is also visionary: as a result of DC charging based on the CCS standard, the system allows a charging capacity of up to 350 kW. In five minutes enough power can be charged to achieve an additional range of around 100 km.
The battery can be charged either through a cable connection at a public charging station or a conventional domestic outlet or, for even more convenience, it can be charged wirelessly, via an electromagnetic field.
Current Maybach vehicles include the Mercedes-Maybach S 500 and S 600 models, launched in February 2015, which blend the perfection of the Mercedes-Benz S‑Class with the exclusivity of Maybach. A special protection version, the Mercedes-Maybach S 600 Guard, is the world's first passenger car to meet the highest ballistic protection level for civilian vehicles, VR10.
The most recent model is the Mercedes-Maybach S 600 Pullman with face-to-face seating and appeared at the beginning of 2016.
Quite what happens when the warranty runs out and the battery needs replacing is a small detail which Daimler does not address at this time, presumably because those who might purchase the latest Vision, should it enter production, are unlikely to be bothered about the cost of a ‘mere’ battery, even if it is of bespoke design and construction!  
Nor are they likely to be concerned that the ‘emission-free’ driving capability requires current generated at a power station!

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