Mercedes-AMG turns the dream of many to drive an F1 level car on the roads into a reality. With no more than 300 units to be built and track performance specs on par with Formula 1, the Mercedes-AMG Project ONE is the closest one can get to driving a race car on the street.
We had the opportunity to travel to Los Angeles and shoot the extremely rare Mercedes-AMG Project ONE in the company of lifestyle photographer Jonathan Glynn-Smith.
Ever since the early days of motorsport, engineers have dreamed of bringing motor racing technology to the road. Mercedes-AMG is now making this dream a reality at the very highest level. “Motorsport is not an end in itself for us. Faced with intense competition, we develop technologies from which our production vehicles also subsequently benefit. We are drawing on our experiences and successes from three constructors’ and drivers’ world championships to bring Formula 1 technology to the road for the first time: in Mercedes-AMG Project ONE”, says Dr Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars.
“It consists of a highly integrated and intelligently networked unit comprising one hybrid, turbocharged combustion engine with a total of four electric motors”
The high-performance plug-in hybrid drive system of the Mercedes-AMG Project ONE comes directly from Formula 1 and was realized in close cooperation with the motorsport experts of Mercedes-AMG High-Performance Powertrains in Brixworth. It consists of a highly integrated and intelligently networked unit comprising one hybrid, turbocharged combustion engine with a total of four electric motors. One has been integrated into the turbocharger, another has been installed directly on the combustion engine with a link to the crankcase, and the two remaining motors drive the front wheels.
The 1.6-litre V6 hybrid petrol engine with direct injection and electrically assisted single turbocharging comes directly from the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula 1 racing car. To achieve high engine speeds, the mechanical valve springs have been replaced by pneumatic valve springs. The vehicle is mid-engined (ahead of the rear axle), and it can easily reach speeds of 11,000 rpm, which is currently unique for a roadgoing vehicle. However, for higher longevity and the use of commercially available Super Plus petrol instead of racing fuel, it remains significantly below the F1 engine speed limit.