To be unveiled at the 2010 Geneva Motor Show, the Mercedes-Benz F800 Style is a harbinger of the company's future stylistic direction, as well as a showcase of its under-development drivetrain and cabin tech.
According to Mercedes-Benz, the F800 Style can accommodate either a plug-in hybrid drivetrain or a hydrogen fuel cell system.
When kitted out as a plug-in hybrid, the F800 uses a 220kW petrol V6 mated with an electric motor capable of adding another 80kW. Fuel economy is rated at 2.9L/100km.
The plug-in hybrid F800 can run for up to 30km on Lithium-ion battery power alone. When operating solely on battery power, the F800 can reach a maximum speed of 120km/h.
With the petrol motor up and running, the plug-in hybrid F800's max speed is 250km/h and the zero to 100km/h dash can be done in 4.8 seconds.
As a plug-in hybrid, the V6 petrol engine sits up front, with the electric motor housed within the transmission that feeds power to the rear wheels. The Lithium-ion battery pack sits underneath the rear seats, while the petrol tank is between the passengers and the boot.
In its fuel cell configuration, the F800 Style has an electric motor capable of delivering 100kW of power and around 290Nm of torque to the rear wheels.
The F800's fuel cell combines stored hydrogen with atmospheric oxygen to produce electricity, with water the only emissions out of the car's tailpipe.
The fuel cell drivetrain used in the F800 Style is a further development of the one that's been making the rounds in a fleet of B-Class F-Cell research vehicles — one of which our colleagues at
Configured as a fuel cell car, the F800's snout houses a stack of fuel cells where a petrol motor would normally reside. These cells are fed by hydrogen tanks that hide in what would normally be called a transmission tunnel. The electric motor sits astride the rear axle, while a set of Lithium-ion batteries is wedged between the passenger cell and the boot. These batteries store the energy captured through regenerative braking.
The F800 Style isn't just about Mercedes' future drivetrains or, even, what the next-generation CLS-Class might look like. There's plenty of interesting cabin tech inside too. Oh, and sliding rear doors.
The F800 Style's entertainment, navigation and control system, dubbed HMI for human-machine interface, utilises a touch pad. But it's not just any touch pad! There's a camera directly above it and a user's finger movements on the touch pad are superimposed on the central LCD monitor. The touch pad will supposedly recognise swipes, pushes, turns and zooms.