The first performance hybrid from Mercedes-AMG is entering series production and draws on technologies from Formula 1. The concept includes a distinctive drive layout with electric motor and battery on the rear axle as well as a high-performance battery developed in-house. The Mercedes-AMG GT 63 S E PERFORMANCE (weighted, combined fuel consumption: 8.6 l/100 km; weighted, combined CO2 emissions: 196 g/km; weighted power consumption: 10.3 kWh/100 km) combines superior performance and impressive driving dynamics with maximum efficiency thanks to its special powertrain. The E PERFORMANCE model thus transfers the DNA of AMG Driving Performance into the electrified future. The combination of 4.0-litre V8 biturbo engine and electric motor generates a system output of 620 kW (843 hp) and a maximum system torque of more than 1,400 Nm. The electric drive's immediate response at the rear axle, rapid torque build-up and improved weight distribution make for a new, highly dynamic driving experience. As in Formula 1, the battery is specifically designed for fast power delivery and draw. The electric range of 12 kilometres allows a practical operating radius, for example in the city or in residential areas. Mercedes-AMG is breaking new ground in communication on electrification together with brand ambassador will.i.am: The world-famous musician and multiple Grammy Award winner is the protagonist of the marketing campaign "Everything but quiet". He not only contributed to the concept, but also wrote an exclusive song for the release video.
"With the new Mercedes-AMG GT 63 S E PERFORMANCE we are transporting our brand DNA into an electrified future. In doing so, we are following our own technical path, which is what has always made AMG so special and desirable. Developed entirely in Affalterbach, the performance hybrid offers a fascinating level of driving dynamics and rightly bears our new technology label E PERFORMANCE. With this new concept, we are also opening up to new target groups who will experience Mercedes-AMG as the performance luxury brand of the 21st century. Our departure into AMG-typical electrification is flanked by a large-scale campaign. And I am delighted that we have also been able to win over a special partner for this in the form of superstar will.i.am, who we have been able to inspire with our technology", says Philipp Schiemer, Chairman of the Board of Management of Mercedes-AMG GmbH.
"Mercedes-AMG has always stood for top performance and maximum driving dynamics. In developing our E PERFORMANCE hybrid strategy, it was therefore clear from the outset that we would pursue a stand-alone concept for AMG that combines our core brand values with high efficiency. It is now entering series production with the new Mercedes-AMG GT 63 S E PERFORMANCE. The layout with the combustion engine at the front and Electric Drive Unit on the rear axle offers numerous advantages. The optimised weight distribution, best possible utilisation of torque and the very fast power delivery promise driving dynamics at the highest level. Added to this is the high-performance battery developed in-house, which has twice the power density of conventional drive batteries and, like many other components, is inspired by technology from Formula 1", says Jochen Hermann, Technical General Manager of Mercedes-AMG GmbH.
Expressive design with striking front apron
The expressive design with a low front section, muscular body, squat greenhouse and dynamic fastback highlights the sporty genes of the four-door coupé. Another striking feature is the characteristic front apron, which is based on the design of the two-door AMG GT. It appears to be cast from a single mould, and blends homogeneously into the dynamic design of the overall vehicle. The outer air intakes are wider and more pointed towards the centre of the car. The airflow is channelled to the wheel arch coolers by three vertical fins.
Exclusive identification features at the rear are the rear apron with integrated plug-in charging flap and the model designation highlighted in red. With the hybrid, AMG is also introducing externally fluted trapezoidal twin exhaust tailpipes. The "E PERFORMANCE" badge on the wings indicates the hybrid drive. As in the entire model series, numerous paint finishes and equipment features are available for the hybrid version. For example, there are four matt paint finishes, five metallic finishes and two non-metallic finishes to choose from. In addition, there are seven new paint finishes from the extended customisation range. The exterior design can be further accentuated with the new AMG Night Package II or a combination of the Night Package and Carbon Package, for example. In addition, there are new 20 and 21-inch light-alloy wheels, each in two colour variants. The exclusive Edition is also available for the performance hybrid.
As the new flagship of the model series, the AMG GT 63 S E PERFORMANCE is particularly extensively equipped. It has received all the upgrades of the latest model facelift, such as the AMG RIDE CONTROL+ suspension with new damping system. Also on board as standard are the adapted AMG ceramic high-performance composite brake system and the MBUX multimedia system with special hybrid displays.
MBUX multimedia system with hybrid-specific displays
The standard Widescreen Cockpit features the MBUX multimedia system with AMG hybrid-specific displays and functions. In the instrument cluster, the driver can read the electric range, the power consumption, the output and torque of the electric motor and the temperatures of the battery and electric motor. High-quality graphics on the multimedia display visualise the power flow of the entire drive system, rpm, output, torque and temperature of the electric motor, as well as the temperature of the battery. The rear-seat passengers receive information on the energy flow as well as the power and torque of the electric motor on their optional multimedia display.
AMG Performance steering wheel in a twin-spoke design
The standard AMG Performance steering wheel with its distinctive twin-spoke design and seamlessly integrated control buttons also offers tangible and visible added value. The three rounded twin spokes combine strength with lightness. The round AMG steering wheel buttons impress with brilliant displays and their perfect turn-and-press operating logic. This allows important driving functions and all driving modes to be controlled without having to take one's hands off the steering wheel. As a new feature, it is possible to select the regeneration levels of the hybrid drive via the steering wheel buttons.
Many individual choices are available in the interior. Exclusive colours emphasise either the sporty or luxurious side of the new flagship model - for example the combination of Exclusive nappa leather in titanium grey pearl/black with contrasting topstitching in yellow or fine Exclusive nappa leather in truffle brown/black in the STYLE trim (diamond stitching). In addition there is a choice of five further colours in Exclusive nappa STYLE leather: sienna brown, classic red, yacht blue, deep white and neva grey. The seats in the front and rear are completely single-tone in the chosen interior colour, as are the armrests in the doors, the leather edging of the floor mats and the steering wheel rim.
The details of the AMG-specific Performance hybrid drive: combustion engine in the front, electric motor in the rear
In the AMG GT 63 S E PERFORMANCE, the 4.0-litre V8 biturbo engine is combined with a permanently excited synchronous electric motor, a high-performance battery developed in Affalterbach and the fully variable AMG Performance 4MATIC+ all-wheel drive system. The combination of the 4.0-litre V8 biturbo engine and electric motor generates a system output of 620 kW (843 hp) and a maximum system torque of more than 1,400 Nm. The driving performance of the most powerful series-production vehicle from Affalterbach to date is correspondingly impressive: acceleration from a standstill to 100 km/h takes just 2.9 seconds, and 200 km/h is reached in less than ten seconds. Acceleration only ends at 316 km/h.
The 150 kW (204 hp) electric motor is positioned at the rear axle, where it is integrated with an electrically shifted two-speed gearbox and the electronically controlled limited-slip rear differential in a compact electric drive unit (EDU). Experts refer to this layout as a P3 hybrid. The lightweight high-performance battery is also located in the rear above the rear axle. This compact design has numerous advantages:
Inspired by Formula 1, developed in Affalterbach: the AMG high-performance battery
When defining the electrification strategy, it was clear from the outset that all essential components would be developed in Affalterbach. At the heart of this is the AMG high-performance battery (HPB). Development of this lithium-ion battery was inspired by technologies that have already proven themselves under the toughest conditions in the Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 team's Formula 1 hybrid racing cars. In the course of development, there was a lively exchange of expert knowledge between the High Performance Powertrains (HPP) Formula 1 engine shop in Brixworth and Mercedes-AMG in Affalterbach. The AMG high-performance battery combines high power that can be called up frequently in succession with low weight to increase the overall performance of the vehicle. Added to this are the fast energy draw and the high power density. This means that during a brisk drive in hilly terrain, for example, drivers can immediately call on the full power potential on uphill stretches, while regeneration is strong when driving downhill.
70 kW continuous output and 150 kW peak output
The high-performance battery of the AMG GT 63 S E PERFORMANCE has a capacity of 6.1 kWh, 70 kW of continuous output and 150 kW of peak output for ten seconds. The low weight of only 89 kilograms allows the very high power density of 1.7 kW/kg. For comparison: conventional batteries without direct cooling of the cells achieve about half of this figure. Charging is via the 3.7 kW on-board AC charger, at a charging station, wallbox or household socket. The battery is designed for fast power delivery and draw, not for the longest possible range. Nevertheless, the electric range of 12 kilometres allows a practical operating radius, for example for quiet and emission-free driving from a residential area to the outskirts of the city or to the motorway.
The innovation push: the direct cooling of the battery cells
The basis for the high performance of the AMG 400 volt battery is the innovative direct cooling: for the first time, a high-tech coolant based on an electrically non-conductive liquid flows around all 560 cells and cools them individually. Every battery needs a defined temperature for optimum power delivery. If the battery becomes too cold or too hot, it noticeably loses power at times, or has to be regulated to avoid damage if the heat becomes excessive. The even temperature of the battery therefore has a decisive influence on its performance, service life and safety. Conventional cooling systems, which only cool with air or the entire battery pack indirectly with water, quickly reach their limits - especially as the requirements continue to increase due to cells with ever increasing energy density. If the thermal management does not fulfil its function optimally, the battery is at risk of ageing prematurely.
For the direct cooling, the AMG specialists had to develop new cooling modules that are only millimetres thin. Around 14 litres of coolant circulate from top to bottom through the entire battery past each cell with the help of a specially developed high-performance electric pump, also flowing through an oil/water heat exchanger attached directly to the battery. This conducts the heat into one of the vehicle's two low-temperature (LT) circuits, and from there to the LT radiator at the front of the car where it is released into the outside air. The system is designed to ensure even heat distribution in the battery.
The result is that the battery is always within a consistent, optimum operating temperature window averaging 45 degrees Celsius, no matter how often it is charged or discharged. It may well be that the average temperature is exceeded when driving at high speeds. The protection mechanisms are therefore configured so that the maximum performance can be obtained from the battery, with the temperature level subsequently lowered by direct cooling. Conventional cooling systems cannot cope with this, and the battery can no longer fully utilise its potential. That is not the case with the AMG high-performance battery: even during fast laps in hybrid mode on the race track, where acceleration (battery is discharged) and deceleration (battery is charged) are frequent, the energy storage system retains its high performance capacity.
Only effective direct cooling makes it possible to use cells with a very high power density. Thanks to this individual solution, the battery system is particularly light and compact. The low weight is also due to the material-saving busbar concept, and the lightweight yet strong crash structure of the aluminium housing. It ensures the highest level of safety.
Operating strategy: electrical power always available
The basic operating strategy is derived from the hybrid powerpack of the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula 1 racing car. As in the top class of motorsport, maximum propulsion is always available when the driver needs it - for example, to accelerate powerfully out of corners or when overtaking. the electric power can always be called up and frequently reproduced via high regeneration performance and on-demand recharging. The independent battery concept enables the optimal compromise between maximum driving dynamics and contemporary efficiency. All components are perfectly coordinated: The performance gain can be experienced directly.
The seven AMG DYNAMIC SELECT driving modes "Electric", "Comfort", "Sport", "Sport+", "RACE", "Slippery" and "Individual" are precisely configured for the new drive technology and thus provide a wide-ranging driving experience - from highly efficient to highly dynamic. The driving modes adjust important parameters such as the response of the drive system and transmission, the steering characteristic, the suspension damping or the sound. The modes can be selected using the rocker switch in the centre console or the AMG steering wheel buttons.
Usually, the Performance hybrid starts silently ("Silent Mode") in the "Comfort" driving mode when the electric motor is switched on. In the instrument cluster, the "Ready" icon signals that the vehicle is ready to drive. In addition, a powerful, sonorous start-up sound typical of AMG is emitted in the interior via the vehicle's loudspeakers as acoustic feedback showing readiness to get going. Slight pressure on the accelerator pedal is all it takes to set the AMG Performance hybrid in motion.
When driving on all-electric power, the legally required Acoustic Vehicle Alerting System warns the surroundings that the Performance hybrid is approaching. A specially composed low-frequency, speed-dependent AMG sound is emitted to the outside via single loudspeakers at the front and rear. The sound can also be heard at a subdued level in the interior, as acoustic feedback for the passengers. In the European Union the system is active up to 20 km/h, in the USA up to the equivalent of approx. 30 km/h. After that, the driving signal fades out harmoniously up to approx. 50 km/h.
At higher speeds, the customer can select the sound experience between "balanced" and "powerful" using the sound buttons in the centre console or on the steering wheel (recognisable by a frequency wave symbol): When driving on all-electric power, either a discreet or a powerful sound experience is generated. When the combustion engine starts, the selected setting influences the sound of the exhaust system. In every situation, one thing remains the same: under all conditions, the Performance hybrid is immediately recognisable as an AMG by its sound.
The control of vehicle dynamics also benefits from the hybrid drive. Instead of braking intervention by ESP®, the electric motor can also control traction as soon as a wheel signals too much slip. To do this, the intelligent control system reduces the drive torque of the electric motor that is transferred to the wheel via the limited-slip rear differential. The result is that ESP® does not have to intervene at all, or only later. Advantage: the combustion engine can thus be operated with higher torque, which both improves agility afterwards and increases efficiency. In addition, the power otherwise "destroyed" during braking can be used to charge the battery.
Regeneration selectable in four stages
Because the high-performance battery is always in the optimum temperature window of around 45 degrees thanks to direct cooling, regeneration can also be optimised - normally a battery heats up strongly at high regeneration power, so that energy recovery needs to be limited.
Regeneration starts when drivers takes their foot off the accelerator pedal, i.e. in overrun mode without touching the brake pedal. This charges the battery and creates a strong braking torque - the wheel brakes are subjected to less wear or, depending on the regeneration level and traffic situation, do not have to be applied at all. The driver can select four different regeneration levels using the right-hand AMG steering wheel button. This applies in all driving modes with the exception of "Slippery", and the energy recovery is configured differently depending on the driving mode.
Another advantage of regeneration is that the vehicle does not speed up when driving down steep hills. So the system works like an engine brake, but also feeds energy into the battery.
AMG 4.0-litre V8 biturbo engine with twin-scroll turbochargers
As the new top model in the range, the AMG GT 63 S E PERFORMANCE benefits from the performance of the AMG 4.0-litre V8 biturbo engine with 470 kW (639 hp) and a maximum torque of 900 Nm, which is available over a wide rpm band from 2500 to 4500 rpm. This harmonises perfectly with the electric motor, which delivers its maximum of 320 Nm right from the start.
Two twin-scroll turbochargers are partly responsible for the high power output, combining optimum response at low engine speeds with a high increase in power at higher engine speeds. In addition to this, the turbine housing is divided into two flow passages which run parallel to one another. Combined with two separate ducts in the exhaust manifold, this makes it possible to individually control the momentum of the exhaust gases acting on the turbine wheel. One duct is fed by the exhaust gases of the first and second cylinders of a cylinder bank, the other by the exhaust gases of the third and fourth cylinders. The aim is to prevent the individual cylinders from having mutually adverse effects on the gas cycle. This reduces the exhaust gas back-pressure and improves the gas exchange.
Belt-driven starter-generator supplies the ancillary units
The belt-driven starter-generator (RSG) combines the alternator and starter in one component, and has an output of 10 kW (14 hp). It starts the combustion engine and ensures the basic supply of the ancillary units such as air conditioning or driving lights, for example, when the vehicle is at a traffic light and the charge level of the high-voltage battery is no longer sufficient to support the low-voltage on-board electrical system. The RSG is particularly responsive because it is integrated into the 400-volt high-voltage electrical system.
AMG RIDE CONTROL+ suspension as standard, with wide spread between dynamism and comfort
The AMG RIDE CONTROL+ suspension is based on multi-chamber air suspension with automatic level control, combined with adaptive, electronically controlled adjustable damping. This damping system is completely new in the AMG GT 4-door Coupé models: for the first time, two so-called pressure relief valves are used. These continuously variable control valves, located outside the damper, allow the damping force to be adjusted even more precisely to different driving conditions and driving modes: one valve controls the rebound damping, i.e. the force that occurs when the wheel rebounds, and the other controls the compression damping when the wheel compresses. The rebound and compression stages are controlled independently of each other.
The AMG development engineers were able to significantly increase the spread between sportiness and comfort, among other things by widening the gap between the minimum and maximum damping force characteristics and by providing even greater flexibility in map design. Due to the special design of the valves, the damper reacts quickly and sensitively to changing road surfaces and driving conditions.
The driver can preselect the basic set-up via the AMG DYNAMIC SELECT driving modes: at the touch of a button, the handling characteristics change, for example, from full dynamics in "Sport+" mode to smooth cruising in the "Comfort" setting. In addition, the tuning can be adjusted in three stages independently of the driving modes via a dedicated button.
The AMG Performance hybrids also have the integrated AMG DYNAMICS vehicle dynamics control system. It influences the control strategies of ESP® (Electronic Stability Program), the all-wheel drive, and the electronically controlled limited-slip rear differential. This increases agility without negatively affecting the vehicle's stability.
Particularly noteworthy: AMG DYNAMICS determines how the vehicle should react. The system uses the available sensors, among other things, to ascertain the speed, lateral acceleration, steering angle and yaw rate. Thanks to an intelligent pilot-control principle, it is possible to anticipate how the driver wants the vehicle to behave, based on the driver's actions and on data from the sensors. Regulation is tailored to the dynamic driving competence of the driver – without any noticeable or disruptive interventions by the system. The driver gets a very authentic driving feel with high cornering dynamics and optimum traction, as well as high stability and predictable handling. Even experienced drivers receive optimum assistance without feeling patronised by the system.
In the "Individual" driving mode, drivers can set the AMG DYNAMICS levels "Basic", "Advanced", "Pro" and "Master" themselves.
Good control and fade-resistant: the AMG ceramic high-performance composite brake system
Neither are there any compromises when it comes to the brakes: In keeping with the extreme power values and the associated performance, the AMG ceramic high-performance composite brake system with bronze-coloured 6-piston fixed callipers at the front and 1-piston floating callipers at the rear is fitted as standard. It is adapted to the high driving dynamics, and larger than in the models with only a combustion engine: the carbon-ceramic brake discs measure 420 x 40 millimetres at the front axle and 380 x 32 millimetres at the rear axle. The brake system impresses with very short braking distances as well as maximum stability and fade-resistance under heavy use. In addition, it scores with a long service life and a particularly fast response. Furthermore, the lightweight material saves additional weight and reduces the unsprung masses. Comfort features include hill starting assistance and priming/dry braking in wet conditions. With the ignition switched off and the vehicle at a standstill, the transmission automatically selects the parking position "P". Meanwhile, the electric parking brake releases automatically when pulling away.
Source: Daimler AG
Date: Sep 1, 2021
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