The electric SLS – the Mercedes SLS Electric Drive – has been shown at Paris 2012 ahead of a 2013 launch.
Ignoring the fact that the Mercedes SLS Electric Drive will cost more than twice the price of the normal, 6.2 litre V8 petrol version, it’s an impressive car.
Mercedes are billing the electric SLS as the most powerful production electric car in the world, and with an output of 740 horses from its four electric motors – one at each corner – that’s no surprise.
That output – and a torque figure of 738lb/ft – makes the electric SLS a whole heap more powerful than its ICE counterpart and allows it to get to 62mph in 3.9 seconds. Which as that’s 0.1 seconds slower than the SLS AMG we must put that down to the weight of the batteries needed to make the SLS ED go at all.
That liquid-cooled lithium-ion battery bank – which lives in the transmission tunnel; and in the area previously used for the petrol tank – weighs a massive 545kg, so despite an extra 170bhp the SLS Electric Drive is slower than the ICE car.
But the extra weight hasn’t just blunted the potential performance of the SLS ED, it’s also meant Mercedes having to rework the suspension so the SLS can cope. So That means more aluminium and carbon fibre and a pushrod setup on the front suspension instead of the normal double wishbones. Mercedes has also fitted ceramic brakes to trim a bit more weight.
The Mercedes SLS Electric Drive is a colossal achievement, no doubt, but one that seems commercially pointless. At a German list price of €416,500 when it goes on sale in mid-2013, you could buy a normals SLS AMG Gullwing and an SLS Roadster and still have enough change to fuel them.