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Mercedes-AMG Project One debuts in Frankfurt

12 September 2017

The car's hybrid drive system is lifted straight from Formula 1, and combines a 1.6-litre turbocharged V6 with four electric motors - providing the Project One with all-wheel drive. And a 1.6-litre turbo - just the one turbo - V6 that revs to 11,000rpm.

The engine is supplemented by two further electric motors, one on each front wheel, and are rated for 120kW each. Timed to coincide with AMG's 50 anniversary, this one hell of a celebration from Mercedes. There is also torque vectoring which adjusts power delivery to each wheel and regenerative braking which converts energy from braking to stored energy that can be used in accelerating. It is allied to standard 19-in. front and 20-in. rear center-lock alloy wheels shod with 285/35 and 335/30 profile tires, respectively.

"Inside it's more business than luxury, with deep bucket seats, square steering wheel with F1 controls and a pair of 10" screens feeding information. It's called the Project ONE, and it's the German company's answer to supercars such as the LaFerrari and McLaren P1.

Having already revealed the car's driveline and chassis at the Nürburgring 24-hour race in April, the first in a series of running prototypes of the Project One has hit the road in testing.

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It's powered by a Formula One-based 1,000 horsepower drive unit. "This hypercar's extreme design marks a milestone in design - there are no lines, and the interior is stripped down to the essentials". I'll be on the ground at this year's Frankfurt Motor Show, so I'll update this article when the vehicle is finally unveiled.

Australia's position as a nation of vehicle enthusiasts (and our love of all things AMG) helped Mercedes' local arm punch above its weight to secure eight examples of the Project One.

Compared to the AMG, the Valkyrie is bare-boned. The AMG team in Affalterbach transfers motorsport performance to the road. "As we said in the past, as soon as AMG steps into a new segment we have a very clear expectation", said Moers.

The Project one even has an F1-type steering wheel.

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As for the electric motors, one is integrated into the turbo, another sits on the petrol engine and the remaining two are mounted on the front axle to complete the all-wheel-drive system.

Inside, it's pretty much back to basics - basics in the manner of today's top racing series.

Speaking of which, the engine might be derived from F1 but it has been altered. Although it likely doesn't appeal to anyone purchasing the Project One, the hypercar will be capable of travelling up to 15.5 miles (25 kilometers) on electric power alone.

In addition to the V6, there are four electric motors. For now left-hand-drive exemptions only apply to classic cars. The auto will be able to run with over 320bhp purely from the electric motors on the front axle, with the V6 turbo only kicking in when the driver pushes the accelerator harder.

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Mercedes-AMG will build 275 cars at $2.72 million per vehicle.

Mercedes-AMG Project One debuts in Frankfurt