Mercedes-AMG is gearing itself to introduce a new family of ’53’ hybrid powertrains into its line-up. The first car to be blessed with this engine is the CLS.
This new family of engines have been derived by combining Mercedes’s newly-developed 320kW 3.0-litre in-line six-cylinder engine and a 50kW electric motor. The new hybrid system is rated to deliver a combined power output of 370 kW. Mercedes AMG plans to display the hybrid engine at the Los Angeles motor show in November, before debuting in Australian showrooms around mid-2018.
According to reports, the third-generation CLS coupe-sedan will be getting this ’53’ hybrid engine first, before the technology spreads to other model lines including the C-Class, E-Class and S-Class sedans, and the GLC, GLE and GLS SUVs – all underpinned by Mercedes’ MRA modular architecture.
Further reports suggest that the new ‘53’ hybrid engine family will slowly replace Mercedes-AMG’s existing 3.0-litre V6 ‘43’ line, which has been subject to some criticism over its AMG authenticity.
The new 53 engine family is in line with the statements made by Mercedes-Benz last year confirming the new M256 petrol in-line six has been specifically developed for electrification.
The in-line six will be one of several engines to usher in an era of 48-Volt power for Mercedes-Benz, embracing an Integrated Starter-Alternator (ISG) and electric auxiliary compressor (eZV), which boosts up 70,000rpm in just 300 milliseconds. Together, the two systems act as a hybrid-lite, delivering an extra 10 to 15kW of boosting performance when it’s needed to cover for either turbo lag or spool-up.
While Mercedes did not release any performance specifications related to the ’53’ hybrid engine, it still claimed that the engine is easily good enough for more than 500Nm of torque — at least four per cent more than the current V6.
With electric and hybrid engines the way into the future, it is good to see the industry leaders to take the initiative and embrace the change without compromising on the performance.