One of the most interesting concepts at the 2008 Detroit Auto Show was Mercedes-Benz’s BlueZero Concept cars. What was interesting wasn’t what the cars looked like, but rather what they were powered by. BlueZero is Mercedes-Benz’s newest take on the fully-electric hybrid drivetrain in a small production vehicle. What’s really interesting is it really is “fully electric.” A pure electric drivetrain with a gas-electric hybrid and a hydrogen fuel cell driving an electric motor. The result is nothing short of stunning.
Here are the three concepts:
The BlueZero E-Cell: Powered by a 100-kW motor with 236 pound-feet of torque and a lithium-ion battery pack, the range is just over 60 miles on a two-hour charge.
The BlueZero E-Cell Plus: Same as the regular E-Cell, but it adds a turbocharged three-cylinder engine from the Smart to boost range to nearly 375 miles.
The BlueZero F-Cell: This is the most interesting one. It uses a hydrogen fuel cell mated to the electric motor to deliver 136-hp and 236 lb-ft of torque, all with zero emissions. The body shell which houses this awesome technology is said to be roughly 90% of what the next Mercedes B-Class is going to look like. The B-Class isn’t sold here in the states and is classed as a sub-compact. Perfect for Europe’s tiny and busy city roads where the model has been a best seller. Hopefully these new BlueZero vehicles will come up for production soon and give us a real chance to buy an alternative mode of transportation.
The future, according to Mercedes-Benz.
Source: Inside Line