Mercedes-Benz plans production of electric B-Class
Thursday 15 September 2011
Mercedes-Benz has confirmed that an electric version of its B-Class compact is to go into production in 2014.
The luxury German automaker showcased the new B-Class at this week's Frankfurt Motor Show, offering visitors the chance to see both standard gasoline and an extended-range version named the 'Concept B-Class E-CELL PLUS'.
While the name may not be overly alluring, the idea behind the vehicle is attractive enough - the concept boasts a range of up to 600 kilometers thanks to a combination of both electric and gasoline powertrains.
Like the Chevrolet Volt, the Concept B-Class E-CELL PLUS uses a range extender that kicks in when the batteries near depletion, some 100 kilometers into the journey.
However, unlike the Volt, Mercedes-Benz's newly developed transmission allows the gasoline engine to act as a direct driving engine (rather than a generator), which propels the car in roughly the same manner as the Toyota Prius.
Because the vehicle needs the gasoline engine to achieve speeds of over 60km/h, the Concept B-Class E-CELL PLUS is unlikely to satisfy many hard-core electric vehicle fans - the Volt came in for significant criticism when it was suggested that at some points, the generator may directly feed power to the wheels.
It also sends a signal that, like many other automakers, Mercedes-Benz may not be fully convinced of the sales potential of 100 percent electric models - the company is also intensively testing fuel-cell powered vehicles, including a B-Class which uses a hydrogen cell.
Put these models alongside the hybrid S 400 and the all-electric A-Class E-CELL, and it seems the brand still has a long way to go before it comes down firmly on one side of the electric vehicle debate.
The Frankfurt Motor Show runs through September 25 in Frankfurt, Germany.
Olympic diver has made his modelling debut for Adidas
Life & Style blogs
iPhone 6 review: bigger, thinner, faster, brighter - Apple proves you can make the best better
iPhone 6 Plus review: more like a small iPad that makes calls - but perfect for some
Jennifer Lawrence nude pictures leaked: Reddit removes 'The Fappening' board dedicated to sharing naked pictures of celebrities
A bottle of wine a day is not bad for you and abstaining is worse than drinking, scientist claims
Say yes to 'no-poo': It's been three years since I stopped washing my hair
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
Scottish independence referendum: A nation divided against itself
The political class is doing what Hitler couldn’t – destroying Britain
Scottish independence: Nationalist leader Jim Sillars threatens pro-union companies with 'day of reckoning' after independence
Portuguese academic says British are 'filthy, violent and drunk'
Scottish independence: The Queen breaks silence on referendum debate – as think tank warns of £14bn black hole if Scotland votes Yes
- 1 Daniele Watts: Django Unchained star's white boyfriend Brian Lucas confirms LAPD internally investigating 'racist' detainment
- 2 Isis release 'Flames of War' video warning Obama of attacks troops could face in Iraq
- 3 Pakistani passenger power forces two politicians off plane
- 4 Say yes to 'no-poo': It's been three years since I stopped washing my hair
- 5 John Travolta addresses former pilot's gay romance allegations publicly for the first time: 'That was the lowest I'd ever felt'
£110 - £200 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Secondary Maths Teacher for spe...
£90 - £160 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Secondary Science Teacher (mater...
£110 - £200 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Secondary Maths Teacher for an ...
£22000 - £37000 per annum: Randstad Education Leeds: A West Yorkshire School i...