A member from the Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One team has confirmed that the German marque is working on a hybrid hypercar and that it will be powered by an F1 engine.
Reports about the car, known as the R50, first emerged last month and during discussions with Evo Magazine at the recent Belgian Grand Prix, it was revealed that the model is currently in its final stages of design and will soon commence development and testing.
Initially, it was thought the hypercar would have a turbo’d four-cylinder but now it has been announced that it will use the same 1.6-liter turbocharged V6 engine as AMG’s current W07 F1 racer. When combined with an energy recovery system, power is tipped to sit between 1,000 hp and 1,500 hp, 900 hp of which will come from the F1 engine alone.
Converting the engine to road use will prove the biggest challenge for Mercedes-AMG engineers. For starters, it will have to be fitted with a starter motor as F1 engine’s can only be started via an external power source. Additionally, the engine will have to be modified to ensure it is capable of handling rigorous everyday driving and is able to last more than a few thousand miles.
There’s a possibility that the engine could be expanded to 2.0-liters in capacity and fed by a second turbocharger, in a bid to improve its reliability. Beyond the engine, a totally new transmission will have to be developed to work on the street and the race track.
Power from the internal combustion engine will be fed exclusively to the rear wheels while the fronts will each be driven by 160 hp electric motors.
To achieve an overall weight in the region of 1,000kg (2,200 pounds) to 1,300 kg (2,866 pounds), the model will use carbon fiber and aluminum for most of its construction. Alongside ensuring the car is light, engineers are working hard to ensure it produces intense levels of downforce, possibly to rival those of the Aston Martin Red Bull AM-RB 001.
The car will be revealed next year to celebrate AMG’s 50th anniversary and when sales begin, could be priced from 4 million euros ($4.46 million).