plug in hybrid or fuel cell
The Mercedes-Benz F800 Style concept was a taster of what
was to come from the company in the relatively near future
- stylewise anyway. The concept was designed to preview
the look of the next generation Mercedes automobiles,
and also showcase a couple of fuel efficient drivetrains
at the same time.
The F800 Style's styling was carried out by designers
working at the advanced design studios in Sindelfingen,
Germany and Como, Italy. The car is characterized by its
flowing bodywork, sweeping roof line, and a series of
more detailed styling elements like the LED headlights
and more complicated (and numerous) air intakes. The vehicle's
front end features a variation of the radiator grille
with the centrally placed star that is typical of Mercedes
"The exciting coupe-like roof line, and in general
the vehicle's balanced proportions, lend it a stylish
sporty look that reinterprets the Mercedes-Benz design
idiom and emphasizes the sculptural character of the F800
Style," says Mercedes-Benz Head of Design Prof.
Gorden Wagener. "The result is a harmonious blend
of innovative form and function, which conveys a sense
of great styling and authority."
The F800 Style is a large car with a spacious and ultra-modern
interior, and - as befits a Mercedes concept - a wide
range of high tech gadgetry. A new multifunction display
shows many additional functions not typically found in
conventional instrument clusters. The F800 Style's display
panel focuses primarily on electric driving functions
and their unique requirements.
One particular system of interest is the HMI (Human Machine
Interface) technology Mercedes has built into the concept.
This system consists of a touchpad on the center console
and a camera that records video images of the user's hand
as it works the pad. A live, but also transparent, image
of the hand is then relayed to the central display panel
above the console. The user sees the contours of their
fingers move across the screen without covering anything,
thus ensuring that all of the functions of the currently
used menu remain visible so that they can be easily operated
by applying slight pressure to the touchpad.
Another unique idea presented in the F800 Style is the
"Range on Map" function, which shows the remaining
possible travel radius during electric vehicle operation
as a 360° image the navigation screen.
Other clever electronics include a revised and improved
PRE-SAFE system which constantly checks for any imminent
collisions and takes active steps to protect the occupants,
and also an updated version of Mercedes-Benz's DISTRONIC
PLUS intelligent cruise control system.
For the F800 Style concept Mercedes-Benz's engineers came
up with two different fuel efficient drivetrains.
First up is the plug-in hybrid model. This version uses
a 300 horsepower, direct injection V6 engine, and a 109
hp electric motor for propulsion. The lithium-ion battery
with a storage capacity of more than 10 kWh can be recharged
either at a public charging station, or at home using
a standard wall socket. Using electricity alone this version
of the concept can travel up to 18 miles. Due to its efficient
drive system and a CO2 bonus for the battery-electric
driving mode, the F800 Style equipped with the hybrid
drivetrain has a certified fuel consumption of only 2.9
liters of gasoline per 100 kilometers (62 miles). This
corresponds to extremely low CO2 emissions of only 68
grams per kilometer. However, thanks to its outstanding
efficiency, the F800 Style equipped with a Plug-in Hybrid
nevertheless has a driving performance comparable to a
sports car (0-60 mph 4.7 s, top speed of 155 mph). When
in electric mode, the F800 Style has a top speed of 75
mph, thus meeting the needs associated with long-distance
The other option is an electric powertrain which uses
fuel cell technology. The vehicle's electric motor develops
around 136 hp, and a torque output of approximately 214
lb-ft. The fuel cell generates the electrical power by
chemically reacting hydrogen with oxygen onboard the vehicle,
producing water vapor in the process as the only emission.