Automakers love competition and when one company comes out with a new model, it causes a stir. Case in point: the recent hypercar that was engineered jointly between Aston Martin and Formula One’s Red Bull Racing. With Red Bull and Aston Martin releasing the insane AM-RB 001 in 2018, Mercedes-AMG, the current leader in the F1 season, is looking to make its own road-legal, F1-based hypercar.
During last weekend’s Belgian Grand Prix, a high-level source within Mercedes-AMG confirmed to TopGear.com that a hypercar is currently in the works. Earlier this year, we heard a wild rumor claiming Mercedes-AMG was considering a machine to battle the Ferrari LaFerrari, McLaren P1, and Porsche 918 Spyder that could look like the Mercedes-Benz AMG Vision Gran Turismo concept car from a few years ago (pictured). But it sounds like Mercedes-AMG is aiming further up the food chain with something that’s even more powerful and track ready.
According to the UK’s Evo, the hypercar will utilize the same 1.6-liter turbocharged V6 that’s in Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg’s W07 F1 racecar. With the addition of an energy recovery system, the hypercar is expected to make between 1,000 and 1,500 horsepower. While that’s more than the current crop of hybrid-powered hypercars, it will be going up against the AM-RB 001 that will be powered by a naturally aspirated V12. There’s no word on what kind of performance the V12 will have though.
TopGear.com reports that Mercedes-AMG’s hypercar will be based on a carbon fiber monocoque and feature a gullwing-style cockpit canopy. The unique canopy style is reportedly being used for packaging reasons and as a hint towards the Mercedes-Benz 300 SL and SLS AMG. Aerodynamically, Evo claims the hypercar will combine the look of the W07 F1 racecar and a modern LMP1 endurance racecar. If true, that would put it as a direct competitor to Aston Martin and Red Bull’s future vehicle.
Despite having the road-going AM-RB 001 in its sights with the same power to weight ratio of one horsepower to one kilogram, TopGear.com reports that the vehicle will a more civilized road car and will therefore have a little more girth. The added weight will also bring high-tech features with it, including biometric driver control systems that were recently shown off on the Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6, claims TopGear.com. The systems, which Ferrari was reportedly working on five years ago, will allow the hypercar to read the driver’s physical inputs in real time and adjust the vehicle’s chassis and electronic controls appropriately.
With next year being AMG’s 50th birthday and the company running on all cylinders, an F1-based hypercar is the ideal way to celebrate. While 2017 would be perfect timing, only time will tell if a hypercar is really on its way. But an F1-based, road-legal car that can decimate any track sounds like perfection.