A family-friendly electric car, a luxury saloon with compact car fuel consumption, perfect city cars for more driving fun and sports cars that also cut a fine figure in 30 km/h zones – it is with this unique array of new models in five vehicle classes that Mercedes-Benz (B and S-Class), Mercedes-AMG (C 63 and GT) and smart (new fortwo and forfour) are setting powerful accents at the world’s busiest motor show.
Instead of short-lived fashions, the inventor of the automobile is presenting long-term trends for modern luxury – also and in particular when it comes to sustainability. The best examples are the new S 500 PLUG-IN HYBRID, the first luxury saloon with a combined fuel consumption of less than three litres, and the battery-driven version of the new B-Class, which celebrates its world premiere in Paris. Also in the spotlight for the first time is the new Mercedes-AMG C 63, the sporting pinnacle of the C-Class line-up.
The new top model in the C-Class line-up makes its debut on the Seine in two body versions – as a saloon and estate car. Both combine outstanding performance with unrestricted everyday usability and functionality. The C 63 is driven by a 4.0 litre V8 biturbo engine closely related to the power unit in the equally new Mercedes-AMG GT. Thanks to its amazing efficiency, the Mercedes-AMG C 63 is the world’s most fuel efficient V8 model – over 30 percent more fuel efficient than its predecessor and significantly more efficient than its less powerful competitors with six-cylinder engines. The power spectrum ranges from 350 kW (476 hp) in the C 63 to 375 kW (510 hp) in the C 63 S. The AMG RIDE CONTROL sport suspension with electronically regulated shock absorbers, the mechanical rear differential lock and the AMG DYNAMIC SELECT drive programme are among its extensive array of standard equipment.
The Mercedes-AMG GT celebrates its show premiere in Paris, taking the Mercedes-Benz sports car brand into a top-flight segment that is new for the company. Its front mid-engine concept with transaxle and intelligent aluminium lightweight design create the foundation for a highly dynamic driving experience. The basis for AMG’s signature Driving Performance is the newly developed AMG V8 biturbo engine, in the GT with 340 kW (462 hp) and in the GT S with 375 kW (510 hp).
Another model making its debut in the ”dream car” category is the S 65 AMG Coupé, the new twelve-cylinder top model in the S-Class Coupé line-up. Unique V12 driveline comfort, superlative performance and exquisite appointments characterise this elegantly sporty two-door. The AMG 6.0-litre V12 biturbo engine with 463 kW (630 hp) and 1,000 Nm of torque underscores its exceptional positioning in the competitive segment.
A sizable electric range is also among the features of the new Mercedes-Benz S 500 PLUG-IN HYBRID. The highly efficient luxury saloon combines the performance of a V8 with the fuel consumption of a compact model. The extremely low average consumption is in stark contrast to the high system output of 245 kW (333 hp) and maximum torque of 480 Nm. The electric motor contributes 85 kW of power and 340 Nm of torque.
Another world premiere being presented by Mercedes-Benz in Paris is the new generation of the B-Class. The pioneer and bestseller in the premium sports tourer segment has undergone an extensive facelift and has been substantially upgraded both inside and out. The spectrum of the B-Class facelift extends from its updated bodyshell design and new LED main headlamps to its even more premium and functional interior design. What is unique in the market is the bandwidth of drive alternatives available to B-Class customers. They include five modern diesel and five petrol versions as well as one natural gas variant, the B 200 Natural Gas Drive, and the B-Class Electric Drive with battery power. Added to that are several variants with 4MATIC all-wheel drive. With the B-Class Electric Drive and the B 200 Natural Gas Drive, there are no fewer than two models in the line-up with alternative drive. Both use the modular ”ENERGY SPACE” bodyshell concept, where the lithium-ion battery (B-Class Electric Drive) or one large and two smaller natural gas tanks and a 14-litre petrol tank (B 200 Natural Gas Drive) are mounted beneath the floor.
Short overhangs, compact length, high steering turn-in – the new smart models have the very best prerequisites not only to squeeze into every parking space, but around every corner, too. Thanks to a 100-mm wider track, the wheels have been shifted even farther outwards. These characteristic proportions offer excellent visibility and manoeuvrability and, together with the rear engine, facilitate an occupant cell with an unmatched level of room in an extremely compact space. The new smart models come to market with two modern three-cylinder engines, complying with the Euro 6 standard, as well as the new five-speed manual transmission and twinamic six-speed dual-clutch gearbox.
Photos: ©Daimler AG