The Mercedes-AMG One hypercar looks to have entered the final stages of testing, with a road-registered prototype spotted out in public for the first time.
It has been nearly four years since Mercedes first revealed the 1000bhp-plus One, and development is said to have been beset by delays relating to the complexities of adapting its F1-derived hybrid powertrain for the street. But it seems the One could now be on track for a reveal in the coming months.
The latest images follow the recent release of an official video, which showed the long-awaited Ferrari SF90 rival – in its now familiar prototype livery – being driven at speed around a test track, and gives a closer look at its comprehensive aero package and cabin design. It also reveals that the One will join Mercedes-AMG’s 2021 Formula 1 racer in adopting the new ‘E Performance’ moniker, which will replace EQ Power+ as the designation for the brand’s upcoming performance hybrids.
The 1000bhp-plus all-wheel drive model, which uses a hybridised 1.6-litre V6 adapted from that of Mercedes-AMG’s championship-winning 2017 Formula 1 car, was originally due in early 2019. It is understood that date was pushed back because of engineering struggles that have included getting the complex powertrain to comply with WLTP emissions standards using a petrol particulate filter without compromising performance.
Problems also occurred with the F1-based engine’s idle speed, which is around 5000rpm in race spec. Engineers were tasked with making the unit run properly at an idle speed of around 1200rpm, described as a “tremendous challenge”.
Development targets include the engine delivering “perfectly in terms of everyday performance” and being able to operate solely in all-electric mode for up to 16 miles. It is not yet clear if the car will be able to meet the concept’s performance claims of a 218mph top speed and 0-124mph in six seconds.
Tthe firm is likely to attempt some sort of lap record at the Nurbürgring once tuning is complete.
The One has retained much of the 2017 concept car’s design. Minor revisions to aerodynamic functions are visible and they could change again before production, with track testing focused on calibrating the active aero components such as the louvres, air outlets in the front wings and rear spoiler.
Further details of the One have yet to be given. However, customers have been told to expect their cars to be delivered “throughout” 2021.
Just 275 examples will be produced, and all have now been sold for a price of €2.27 million (£2.06m).