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AMG plans greener, cleaner performance cars

Wed, 08 Oct 2008

By Ben Whitworth

Motor Industry

08 October 2008 08:00

AMG is going green – the maker of unfeasibly fast Mercedes-Benz models is gearing up for hybrid and diesel versions, using advanced low-weight materials to retain their tyre-smoking performance credentials while satisfying the nagging greener conscience.

In an exclusive CAR interview, Aufrecht Melcher Großaspach boss Volker Mornhinweg spoke candidly about the company’s future and outlined why a raft of imminent eco measures would enhance AMG’s performance capabilities rather than stifle them.

‘Of course emissions and economy are important to us at AMG – only a fool would ignore these factors today,’ said Mornhinweg (pictured). ‘But we have the technology to improve economy and performance – and you’ll see it sooner than you think.’

The new SL65 Black Series (670bhp and 738lb ft) will mark a turning point for AMG – it’s likely to be the last AMG car to feature such massive outputs. Even the upcoming Gullwing supercar – the first of AMG’s ground-up new models – develops a relatively modest 571bhp and 479lb ft.

‘Power is not a problem for us, so we’ll be focusing heavily on materials technology to lower weight and boost the power-to-weight ratios of our cars. And because they’ll be lighter, they’ll be more agile and engaging to drive.’

Mornhinweg singles out the SL65 Black Series. Only the doors are original – the rest of the composite bodywork is AMG’s work, and it’s a full 250kg lighter than the SL63.

Click ‘Next’ to read about hybrid AMGs

By Ben Whitworth