GRR

1,000PS Mercedes-AMG One to make world debut at FOS

01st June 2022
Seán Ward

Years in the making, the new Mercedes-AMG One hypercar will make its global dynamic debut at the 2022 Festival of Speed presented by Mastercard.

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That’s right, one of the most hotly anticipated cars of the last decade will be blasting up the Hill at Goodwood this June, five years after it was first unveiled by Lewis Hamilton at the 2017 International Mobility Show in Frankfurt. Why Lewis Hamilton? Because the One is powered by a Mercedes F1-derived 1.6-litre turbocharged V6 hybrid.

The performance is quite something. With four electric motors (one in the turbocharger, one directly attached to the engine, and one on each front wheel) there’s 1,063PS (782kW) in total, enough for 0-62mph in 2.9 seconds and 218mph flat-out.

The Mercedes-AMG One will be running up the Hill every day at the Festival. Tickets for Saturday and Sunday have sold out, but there are still some available for Thursday and Friday, so click here for more details.

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What engine is in the Mercedes-AMG One?

We’ve covered the basics above, but it’s worth getting stuck into the details because there’s a lot going on. As we’ve said, the powertrain is similar to that as the Mercedes-AMG F1 car, a 1.6-litre single-turbo V6 hybrid. Where you’d normally find mechanical valve springs in a road car engine you’ll find pneumatic valve springs, and there’s both direct injection and port injection to improve fuel efficiency and performance.

How does the Mercedes-AMG One’s hybrid system work?

The engine revs to 11,000rpm and the motor that spins the turbo produces 90kW and spins to 100,000rpm before exhaust gasses take over. The energy from surplus exhaust gasses, meanwhile, spin the motor to generate electricity, which is then sent to either the motors on the front wheels, the 8.4kWh lithium-ion battery or the motor on the engine. And how many catalytic converters are there, we hear you ask? Six in total, including four pre-heated metal catalytic converters and two ceramic catalytic converters. Oh, and there are two particulate filters as well. Simple, right?

The motor on the engine, attached to the crankshaft, produces 120kW, while the motors on the front axle provide 120kW each, can spin up to 50,00rpm and are connected to the axle by reduction gears (can you imagine the wheels spinning at 50,000rpm?), and Mercedes says they have an 80 per cent energy recouperation rate in day-to-day driving.

Can it drive in pure EV mode?

The 8.4kWh battery, the same as that in the Mercedes-AMG GT 63 S E-Performance, is charged with a 3.7kW onboard charger and uses an 800V architecture to provides up to 18.1 miles of electric-only driving. To keep everything at the optimal temperature, around 45C under most conditions, coolant passes from top to bottom around the individual cells.

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What about the chassis and suspension?

The One has a carbon-fibre monocoque chassis, while the engine and gearbox, a seven-speed automated manual with a hydraulically controlled four-disk carbon-fibre clutch, are load bearing. The suspension uses a five-link, pushrod damper set-up front and rear, there’s no anti-roll bar to be seen and, depending on the drive mode, the car is lowered by 37mm up front and 30mm at the rear. Speaking of modes, there are three for the dampers, Comfort, Sport and Sport+, and there are six drive modes. Race Safe gives you an all-electric start-up with the engine ready to go; Race keeps the engine on, providing power or charging the battery; EV, well, that does what it suggests sending you down the road on electricity alone until the battery is empty; Race Plus brings the body’s active aero elements into play, firms up the dampers, and lowers the ride height; Strat 2 puts the dampers at their firmest and gives you full power from everything; Individual is configurable. The stability system is either in ESP On, ESP Handling Mode or, if you’re feeling brave, ESP Off.

There’s a limited slip-differential at the rear axle, as you’d expect, the motors at the front provide actual torque vectoring, and as for brakes, there are six-piston calipers at the front, four-piston at the rear, carbon-ceramic discs front and rear and ABS, unlike the F1 car. You get 10-spoke forged aluminium centre-lock wheels as standard with a partial carbon-fibre cover, but there are optional nine-spoke forged magnesium wheels. Whichever ones you have, they measure 19-inches up front and 20-inches at the back.

How fast does the AMG One accelerate?

Before we mention any more technical info, there are some delightful numbers worth considering. Nought to 62mph in 2.9 seconds. Zero to 0-124mph takes 7.0 seconds, 1.9 seconds faster than the 992 911 Turbo S, while 0-186mph is over in just 15.6 seconds, 0.8 seconds faster than a Ferrari SF90 Stradale.

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Has the design changed?

As for the design, well we’ve been looking at it for five years now so there aren’t many surprises. What’s good to note, though, is that there are active flaps in the front diffuser, active wheel-arch louvres, a huge air intake on the roof to feed the engine, a fin from the intake that stops the airflow breaking away in corners, NACA intakes in the engine cover to give the radiators something to consume, a two-piece rear diffuser and a two-piece, retractable, adjustable rear wing. There are three exhaust outlets, one main one and two smaller ones, a la the F1 car. Depending on the drive mode the aerodynamics are configured to three broad settings, namely Highway, Track and Race DRS, where all of the active aero addenda shut or retract at the touch of a button, reducing downforce by 20 per cent but reducing drag for improved straight-line performance. Everything goes back to normal as soon as you press the DRS button again, brake or enter a corner.

What’s the One’s interior like?

In the cabin, Mercedes describes it as “Formula 1 for two”. The seats are splendid buckets, the sides of which sit at the same height as the sills so you can simply slide in and belt up, and the seat backs can be adjusted between two angles. The steering wheel is electrically adjustable and the pedal box manually adjustable between eleven steps, there are two 10-inch displays, two USB ports, air conditioning, an F1-inspired steering wheel with shift lights and a screen rather than a rear-view mirror.

How much does the Mercedes-AMG One weigh?

The only real technical disappointment has to be the kerb weight, a hefty 1,695kg. Yes, there’s a hybrid system, and yes this is a road car rather than an F1 racer, but we were hoping for something a little lighter. Only 275 will be built, all for around £2.5m each, roughly the same as the Aston Martin Valkyrie that made its debut at the Festival of Speed in 2021.

  • Mercedes-AMG

  • One

  • Festival of Speed

  • FOS 2022

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