Mercedes-AMG Project ONE: A Formula That Thrills


TrackWorthy - Mercedes-AMG ProjectONE
TrackWorthy - Mercedes-AMG ProjectONE

This year’s Los Angeles Auto Show is a treasure trove of track-worthy debuts. As California is known for its perfect weather and as the world’s tech mecca, it’s little wonder that we see so many sun-suited cars unveiled here, many of which push the performance envelope, employing the latest in e-hybrid technologies.

For obvious reasons, this is good news for TrackWorthy. We’re releasing a series of short articles highlighting the most exciting track-worthy debuts from the show, including photos, videos and interviews with some of the key people involved in conceptualizing, producing and selling these magnificent cars.

Below is the first in our series, the Mercedes-AMG Project ONE. Although minimalist in design, Formula 1 engine and technology integration drive performance to the max.

“Never before has racetrack technology been transferred so directly to the road… It is simply breathtaking in every way.” Tobias Moers, Chairman of the Board of Management, Mercedes-AMG
The Project ONE truly is a formula one car for the road. At its core is a 1.6-litre V6 engine taken straight from the company’s Formula 1 car with minimal modifications, forged in the very same Brexworth factory as the Mercedes Formula 1 car driven by Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas.

The Project ONE’s lithium-ion battery technology is a direct derivative from Formula 1 as well, although there are more batteries in the road car. The increased battery count grants the Project ONE charge capacity for up to 15 miles of electric-only driving.

Although 100% road legal, “this beast is not exactly tamed,” explains Tobias Moers, Chairman of the Board of Management, Mercedes-AMG. The engine redlines around 11,000 RPM, and “no other road car can claim this figure,” claims Moers. As Rory Lumsdon, PR Manager, Mercedes-Benz Cars UK Ltd, admits, not all roads are meant for the Project ONE – its true domain, like its F1 sibling, is the track.

We apologize for the poor audio quality during parts of the video. Sadly, we experienced a technical issue with our mic.

Four electric motors complement the V6 in the Project ONE. One drives the turbocharger to eliminate response time, one aids the crankshaft to produce an extra 160 horsepower, and an electric motor sits behind each of the front wheels, together contributing another 320 hp.

The result is a total power output (V6 plus electric) that exceeds 1,000 hp capable of launching the car to 200 km/h in under six seconds on the way to a top speed of more than 350 km/h.

TrackWorthy - Mercedes-AMG Project ONE - 4

TrackWorthy - Mercedes-AMG Project ONE - 1
Despite these impressive figures, according to Lumsdon, achieving true Formula One driving dynamics in a road car is Mercedes-AMG’s main objective in designing the car, not necessarily making it capable of the highest top speed.
TrackWorthy - Mercedes-AMG Project ONE - 5
Mercedes-AMG will produce only 250 Project ONEs, each of which will sell for around 2.25 million pounds sterling. Despite the sad reality that these production and price figures mean that the Project ONE will be unattainable for most of us, all future AMG customers will likely experience some piece of the car – Moers explains that the Project ONE “plays a major role in defining the future of performance,” and hints that all future performance cars will include electrified powertrains, similar to the Project ONE’s. In fact, we can already see some of the Project ONE’s hybrid technology manifesting in Mercedes cars like the new CLS and S classes.
TrackWorthy - Mercedes-AMG Project ONE

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