... and presents the G Code vehicle study, developed in Asia for Asia. The innovative and versatile Sports Utility Coupé (SUC) for town and country shows how emotionally appealing a future compact SUC can be, and what evolutionary possibilities the Mercedes Benz design philosophy offers.
The new Product Engineering Centre of the brand bearing the three-pointed star also features a complete design studio. Under the leadership of the main studio in Sindelfingen, the studio in Beijing creates design models and mobility concepts that incorporate and focus on local cultures and trends. Consequently, this new Advanced Design Studio within the Daimler Product Engineering Centre in Beijing also pursues an already established strategy of Daimler. Worldwide a total of five such centres serve as "seismographs" for market-specific developments. The knowledge gained there is then incorporated into the technical concept and design of future models.
The G-Code concept vehicle is a prime example of this strategy: it interprets the current design idiom of sensual purity from the perspective of the Mercedes-Benz advanced designers in Beijing and Sindelfingen. The combination of emotion and intelligence conveys modern luxury in a compact form. As a result, the G-Code is also a perfect fit for today's understanding of design in China. "The G-Code is both beautiful and intelligent, and interprets our typical Mercedes Coupé design idiom," says Gorden Wagener, Head of Design of Daimler AG. A coupé-like side line, a dynamically flowing greenhouse and extremely sporty proportions immediately catch the eye. Furthermore, compact dimensions, extensive assistance and camera systems as well as the variable plug-in hybrid drive system with long electric operating range make the SUC ideal for traffic in Asia's mega-cities. At the same time, the electronic all-wheel drive technology with "digital prop shaft" ensures a particularly sporty and energy-efficient set-up both on and off the road.
With the G-Code the employees of the Advanced Design Centres in Beijing and Sindelfingen not only implement technical innovations, but also provide a look ahead to the evolutionary possibilities of the Mercedes-Benz design philosophy of sensual purity. The 2+2-seater SUC measures about 4.10 metres in length and has counter-opening doors. It captivates with a coupé-like profile, muscular wheel arches and a continuous greenhouse without visible A-pillars. This continuous glass area - similar to the cockpit glazing of a powerboat - lends the G-Code, which is about 1.90 metres wide and only about 1.50 metres tall, a coherent horizontal arrangement and a resounding forward thrust even while at a standstill. This solution seems to literally levitate the roof with its retractable roof rails and tension-charged surfaces above the vehicle body, and signals the lightness of automotive being.
Despite its compact dimensions the G-Code is a 2+2-seater with great variability. The interior visualises the designers' idea of combining the practical talents of an SUV with the emotional appeal of a sports car. The interior specialists deliberately let digital and analogue worlds collide. This combination of classic elements and state-of-the-art high tech stimulates the senses and provides the occupants of the G-Code with an even more authentic experience.
The power of two individually controlled drive cores acts in the G-Code. The engine at the front is a compact, state-of-the-art turbocharged combustion engine that runs on hydrogen and solely drives the front wheels. An electric motor drives the rear axle and transmits its power selectively to the two wheels via a dual multi-disc clutch.
The HYBRID select driving dynamics system offers three specific modes:
• In HYBRID eDrive mode the G-Code is set up for maximum all-electric operation. The control strategies of this mode focus on maximum energy efficiency and maximum drive system comfort.
• When the driver activates HYBRID eco mode, the focus is on maximum drive system comfort in addition to maximum hybrid efficiency. The digital sound modulation compensates acoustically for the alternating or simultaneous use of the electric motor and the combustion engine, and generates a subdued, pleasant soundscape in the interior.
• In HYBRID sport mode, the occupants experience the G-Code as a driving machine on the level of a compact sports car. For maximum longitudinal and lateral dynamics the electric motor is used as a booster during acceleration. For spirited driving on twisty roads, torque vectoring on the electrically driven rear axle significantly increases agility. The digital sound modulation also lets the occupants experience the soundscape of a powerful sports car equipped with a flap exhaust system.
Depending on the selected mode, the G-Code can operate as a front-wheel drive vehicle powered solely by the combustion engine, as an all-electric rear-wheel drive vehicle or fully variable in all-wheel drive mode. A completely newly configured system controls this innovative all-wheel drive system. It combines the two power sources as demanded by the current driving situation. The powertrain control acts as a "digital prop shaft" between front and rear axle. Which drive mode is the most sensible in any given situation is not only determined by aspects of economy. Driving dynamics parameters are also incorporated to enhance active safety or boost longitudinal and lateral dynamics in HYBRID sport mode, for example. At the same time, the control logic always ensures steady and, for the driver, predictable handling characteristics independent of the respective front-wheel, rear-wheel or all wheel drive mode.
05 November 2014
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