Mercedes-Benz has showcased two new hybrid vehicles for the year 2011, which includes the S400 Hybrid premium luxury sedan and the ML450 Hybrid SUV. The S400 includes a 20hp electric motor working in tandem with a 275hp V6 gasoline engine. The electric motor is fueled by the world’s first lithium-ion battery designed especially for automotive use.
The ML450 Hybrid SUV comes with two electric motors that are coupled with 275hp V6 gasoline engine. The integration of electric motors in both the hybrids provides impressive power and fuel economy that is estimated to be about 21mpg around town and 24mpg on the highway for the ML450 SUV.
The 3.5-liter V6 engine included in both the vehicles takes advantage of the Atkinson principle – compromising torque for fuel efficiency and emission reduction. The decrease in torque is corrected by the electric motors that generate up to 118lb-ft of torque. A powerful computer, capable of 50 million calculations per second, calculates the best operating mode 160 times a second to maintain an ideal balance between fuel economy and performance.
The hybrid system further includes a fuel-saving start-stop feature that turns off the gasoline engine at low speeds when braking to stop. Moreover, during braking, the electric motors also act as a generator recovering kinetic energy and storing in the lithium-ion battery on board.