Mercedes-AMG has been on a roll lately, and it appears it’s just the beginning of a new era for the brand.
The Mercedes-AMG sports car has been brilliant, and the German automaker has continued to improve on the model with new, more powerful variants. Then there’s the Project One hypercar that promises to bring Mercedes Formula 1 technology to the road, and we all know the company is also working on a four-door GT model.
Most recently, AMG debuted its new 53 series of cars with hybrid powertrains, signaling that the high-performance brand is pushing towards electrification. According to a recent Automobile report, Mercedes’ product planners are debating whether to make the next SL an AMG-exclusive model, like the AMG GT. Reports say the next-generation SL is being engineered alongside the next GT, giving Mercedes a reason to market it as an AMG model.
That means since the AMG GT is a two-seater sports car, the next SL will gain two rear seats that could accommodate passengers. It would also be a sportier offering thanks to a new, aluminum-intensive package, with a front/mid-engine layout and available air suspension. The idea would be to make the SL sportier while being less cramped than the S-Class Convertible.
But what’s most interesting is that Automobile reports, citing an engineer familiar with the matter, that a 73 Series plug-in hybrid powertrain is in development. The SL73 PHEV could be powered by a 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 engine with around 612 horsepower, along with an electric motor rated at 204 hp. That means a total system output of over 800 hp and around 738 pound-feet of torque.
Sources say that 73 series powertrain wouldn’t be exclusive to the SL, but it will also find its way to the AMG GT/4, future S-Class, and the range-topping GLS SUV.
For now, it appears the AMG GT won’t be a candidate for a plug-in hybrid powertrain, but don’t think electrification is entirely out of the picture. There’s the company’s EQ Power Plus in the works, which features a combustion engine combined with two small, yet powerful electric motors. That would allow the AMG GT to slot between the mainstream AMG performance hybrids, like the 53 series, and the Project One hypercar.
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