• Jun 21st 2008 at 8:04PM
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By the middle of the next decade Mercedes-Benz wants its entire lineup to be able to operate entirely free of petroleum. The German giant is working on a variety of technologies that will help provide crude oil free transport such as battery electrics, fuel cells and highly efficient internal combustion engines that can operate on biofuels. Mercedes has recently been letting European journalists sample some of these new powertrains at a test facility in Spain.

The F700 concept that debuted last fall in Frankfurt is powered by a turbocharged DiesOtto engine. The DiesOtto is Mercedes' branding for a combined HCCI and spark ignition engine that provides nearly the same efficiency as a diesel without the need for the expensive after-treatment systems. This and conventional diesel engines can run on biofuels and Mercedes hopes to launch the DiesOtto in production by 2010. Mercedes is also currently field testing electrically-driven vehicles with both batteries alone and fuel cells each of which they also plan to launch at the beginning of the decade. While it may well be that all Mercedes models in 2015 will be capable of running petroleum free, the reality is that many - if not most - will still be using fossil fuels much of the time. That may come in the form of coal for electricity, natural gas reformed into hydrogen, or petroleum fuels blended with biofuels. But you have to start somewhere.

[Source: The Sun]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 7 Years Ago

      is there anyway to convince Mercedes to let up on the rhetoric? or is this a different Mercedes from the Mercedes that today has the WORST CO2 ranking among European manufacturers and paid through their noses to block the new EU car emission regulations?

      We most certainly can remove the petroleum dependency, but regulations are needed to do this.
      So we have Mercedes coming outwith such statements but then


      • 7 Years Ago
      Good move, bnravo.

      However, the concept shown above is rediculously ugly and painfully childish looking.
      • 7 Years Ago
      I am afraid this article does not hold true with the actions of MB,
      There has been a SMART electric around for some years now in
      europe , this car has been developed with the assistance of ZYTEK
      in england , recently 100 of these cars were built and are currently
      undergoing a 4 year evaluation in the UK . The system used is indentical
      (ie, the battery etc )to the system manufactured by MES-DEA in
      Switzerland and has been used in production road cars for over
      four years now and has proved to be totally reliable , so it is a mystery
      to be why the humble smart needs another four years of testing!

      This press release from Mb is total greenwash , and should viewed
      with total derision , if MB cannot get it together to bring their cheapest
      car to market in an EV version, well I ask what hope is their for the
      rest !
      • 7 Years Ago
      Even if MB eliminates petrol using cars from it's lineup by then, it'll have probably used more fuel than most vehicles by that date...it makes some of the most fuel inefficient, gas guzzling, unreliable pieces of sh&t around.

      How anyway can consider MB a green manufacturer is beyond me. The first big favor they could do for this planet is stop building those gargantuan piece of crap SUV's of theirs...useless penile extenders.
      • 7 Years Ago
      That sounds extremely bold, if not suicidal. Good luck to them.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Because it takes 5-8 years to design the car, Test the car.
      Think of it every little part requirs thousands of hours of engineering work, They need to make the part fit into the dimensions the car designed speces, and the chief frame engineered speced out.

      Then they have to make each part meet its weight requirement and strength requirement. That means picking the right alloy, theres dozens of mild steels, carbon steels, stainless steel, chromium steel,

      Then they have to secure mill to provide the raw materials, a vendor to to get their industrial engineers to figure out the most efficient way to build it,

      On top of the 3-5 years it can take to develop the car they have to test it. If any fails to meet their requirements it requires even more engineering.

      For things like engines, brakes, bearings, transmissions. They go through hundreds of thousands of hours of dyno testing. To make sure they will provide the power they want and last as long as they want. That doesnt mean a single engine but they will have a dozen engines running at once. I forgot the racing team i think it was roushe they had so many engines on the dyno running 24/7 they actually used the dynos to produce electricity and that paid for their gas.

      After all all most dynos are are giant generators or hydrolic pumps.

      Now they are starting with a clean sheet of paper.
      So there can be very few carry over parts from the last gen of their cars. To build a proper EV its platform design has to be much different for proper handling.

      • 7 Years Ago
      If they run on biofuels, then they also run on fossil fuels.
      Diesotto / HCCI runs on gasoline or E85. Diesel engines run on diesel or biodiesel.
      Sounds to me like Mercedes is doing nothing that GM isnt doing with HCCI and E85 capability.
      Its not up to Mercedes. Its up to the fuel companies.
      • 7 Years Ago
      So...am I the only one who cares that there are suicide (read: awesome) doors on the concept car? I think this blog's readership needs a little more "auto" in with the "green."
      • 7 Years Ago
      This appears to be a simple greenwash. All they need to do is fulfill it is to make every vehicle they make able to run on E100 or B100, which relatively speaking, is easy but not necessarily "green". Biofuels are only green if they are certified as having been produced from waste or from sustainably grown crops.

      Right now they could make every one of their vehicles E85 capable by investing $100/vehicle. More difficult is to make vehicles that are much more efficient sustainable fuel cycle (i.e. battery electric). If they take the latter path, then good for them!
      • 6 Years Ago
      great plan, now they have to search for the best solutions to rich that plan, one of this solutions is in my head, hehe
      • 7 Years Ago
      Great news! BUT much of this technology is ready today. Why the wait?
      • 7 Years Ago
      Even if your all-electric vehicle got its power from a "dirty" electricity source (i.e. a coal-burning power plant), it is still 70% less polluting than its gasoline burning counterpart. Yes, we need to start somewhere. The dickheads in Washington need to upgrade our power infrastructure to greener sources. If they had done that since the Gulf War... we'd still be able to drive our RWD V8 monsters.

      The world's biggest polluters and power hogs aren't Ford Mustangs and Range Rovers... they are houses, buildings, civic centers, office buildings, factories, and power plants. Clean those up... and we would never have considered cars to be such a burden on the environment. Cars and trucks make up less than 18% of the world's oil market. Buildings and structures make up more than 50% of our world's energy and oil needs.
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