Recently unveiled at the 2012 Paris Motor Show, the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Electric Drive is currently the world’s most powerful production electric car. Now this stunning SLS AMG Coupe Electric Drive, that is a production version, has actually become the most expensive Mercedes Benz car around with the price of $538,000, or more than 2.5 times the cost of a regular SLS.
In addition of its exterior style with a blue liquid metal complete with the signature gullwing doors, and its “eye-catching” interior, Mercedes is claiming the SLS AMG Electric Drive as the world’s fastest production electric vehicle – the car can go from 0 to 62 mph (o-100 kph) in 3.9 seconds, and reach a limited top speed of 155 mph.
Combined, the four motors (one at each wheel), connected to an “axially-arranged” transmission and a 60-kWh lithium ion battery pack, produce 740 horsepower and 738 pound-feet of torque. The transmission, which Mercedes calls AMG Torque Dynamics, makes the electric SLS all-wheel drive and can power or brake wheels individually depending on conditions.
The liquid-cooled battery pack, mounted where is the fuel tank in the standard SLS AMG, consists of 864 individual cells in 12 modules and was developed by Mercedes-Benz’s AMG division and its High Performance Engines offspring based in Britain, the same people who made the Kinetic Energy Recovery System (KERS) regenerative braking for Mercedes’ Formula 1 cars. The high-output battery is paired with an advanced temperature monitoring system, which can commission the air conditioning during extremely hot conditions.
A full charge from a standard 230-volt European power takes 20 hours, but Mercedes will offer a 22 kW quick charger, so charging can be completed in about three hours. Like in Formula One racing, the battery pack is recharged on the run via braking and during in-gear coasting. The driver can select the level of recovered energy thanks to paddled mounted on the steering wheel.
The standard wheels are 19 inches wide with 265/35 profile tires in the front, and 20 inches with 295/30 profile in the back.
The SLS AMG Electric Drive goes on sale in German next year, while details on additional market availability have yet to be finalized.