Mercedes-Benz head of design Gorden Wagener says that the Mercedes G-Code concept interprets ‘the modern lifestyle of of the younger Asian society.’ And what the younger Asian society wants, according to this collaboration between Germany and the company’s newly-opened Beijing R&D centre, is a light-up grille that mimics Warp Drive in Star Trek. Bear with me, I’m not making this up…
When the car is in all-electric mode, blue light-up stars in the radiator grille move from the edge of the ‘display’ inwards. This, we’re told, creates the illusion of a tunnel permanently opening in front of the car. Switch to hybrid, and the stars change to purple.
In sport mode, the stars turn red and move from the centre outwards – which shows the car transporting imaginary energy to the outside. (And would probably get you pulled over for showing red light to the front of a vehicle.)
What else does younger Asian society want? Two electric scooters stored under the boot floor, apparently. Actually, I think London would quite like that too – it beats a Boris bike, and the scooters take charge on the journey.
Details on the G-Code’s powerplant haven’t been released, but expect it to be a development of the hydrogen-electric hybrid scheduled to appear in the B-class in 2017. That’s likely to be a combination of a turbocharged petrol engine and a fuel cell.
The production version G-Code – and there will be one, slotted in beneath the GLA and to take on the forthcoming Audi Q1 – is likely to take its styling direction from the concept, but we’d expect it to be toned down a little, as is often the way of these things. But let’s keep the Warp Drive grille and scooters, shall we?