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All-Electric Mercedes-Benz SLS E-Cell Gets Closer To Launch

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Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG E-Cell

Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG E-Cell

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For those of you who like fast, expensive, all-electric sports cars, next year will be big.

The Audi R8 e-tron will launch first, but it will soon be followed by the Mercedes-Benz SLS E-Cell, the all-electric conversion of its expensive gull-wing sports coupe.

Now, Motor Authority has some spy photos of a prototype SLS E-Cell being tested on the fabled Nürburgring race track in Germany.

Aside from a couple of small badges saying "E-Cell" and the lack of exhaust pipes, the electric SLS looks pretty much the same as the gasoline version--which sports a 405-hp, 5.5-liter V-8 engine.

The electric SLS was first announced more than two years ago, aimed at the electric Audi R8 and also perhaps the Tesla Roadster, then still in production and on sale.

The company showed the car in the U.S. at last year's Detroit Auto Show, and provided more technical details.

It uses four electric motors, one per wheel for all-wheel drive (although they're not wheel motors per se), and power output is a prodigious 525 horsepower on tap and 649 pounds-feet of torque from a standstill.

The company claims a 0-to-62-mph time of less than 4 seconds.

Earlier this year, Mercedes-Benz explicitly drew parallels between Formula 1 technology and its electric supercar, including lessons drawn from the Kinetic Energy Recovery System (KERS) technology and such exotic components as carbon-ceramic brakes.

If you want to see what a development version of an electric supercar looks like at speed on the track, check the spy photos at Motor Authority.

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Comments (6)
  1. But what's the power source? battery cells or fuel cells?
     
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  2. Actually it's a BEV with a 324 cell battery pack apparently, but E-Cell certainly is a rather confusing designation from a firm that seems to be banking more on fuel cells.
     
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  3. It was co developed with Tesla.
     
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  4. I don't believe that is correct, CDspeed. Tesla has not been involved at all according to many sources, see this link, for example:

    http://www.caranddriver.com/reviews/2013-mercedes-benz-sls-amg-e-cell-prototype-drive

    http://automotive.speedtv.com/article/green-tesla-mercedes-plan-new-model/

    Tesla & Daimler have worked together on two cars, the Smart ForTwo Electric Drive & the A-class E-Cell. Although Daimler and Tesla have announced that they'll work together on a third vehicle, the SLS E-Cell is not an example of that. This is an E-class and the other is an A-class E-Cell. As noted above, the E-Cell nomenclature by Daimler is a bit confusing, I think...

    But great looking, good to see more old school OEMs put out credible offerings.
     
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  5. Hmm, well it has been a while and I thought I had read that Tesla was involved with the SLS. Oh well my mistake.
     
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  6. CDspeed. No problem and I remembered this mainly because I originally thought the same thing. I also would love an EV version of the SLS, so that helps me remember a little better. I'm sure Tesla will be involved in some future projects like this but probably buried with basic product plans and production now...
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