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Hydrogen- and solar-powered cars are not new, but a car that uses only hydrogen, solar energy, and wind power? Meet the Vision G-Code from Mercedes-Benz
Apollo, resident of Mount Olympus, is recognised by Greek and Roman mythology and history as a god who could bring ill health and deadly plague and, perhaps, more famously, as the God of the Sun. And what has this to do with cars, you ask? Well, the boffins working away in the deep recesses of Mercedes-Benz R&D probably have the Apollo Belvedere statue on their desks, for they have come up with a hybrid solar-cum-hydrogen-powered concept car quite like no other – the Mercedes-Benz Vision G-Code.

The two+two seater Sports Utility Coupé (SUC) is just over 4.1 metres long – shorter than the current smallest Mercedes crossover, the GLA – and includes a continuous glass area with barely visible A-pillars as well as no B-pillars due to suicide doors.

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Two separate drive cores power the G-Code. At the front is a compact, high-tech turbocharged hydrogen-powered combustion engine driving the front wheels, while the rear axle is driven by an electric motor that transmits its power selectively to the two wheels via a dual multi-disc clutch. The driver can choose from among three modes: HYBRID eDrive for maximum energy efficiency through all-electric operation, HYBRID sport for maximum performance with the combustion engine playing a major role, and HYBRID eco for a balance between performance and efficiency.

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Electricity generation is decentralised. Apart from regenerative braking and plug-in charging, the SUC is coated with a “multi-voltaic silver” paint finish. This acts as a highly efficient giant solar cell, and also is charged electrostatically, that is, by wind flow when in motion as well as when stationary. This electrical charge is used for the methane and hydrogen synthesis. The “power on the move” suspension uses hydraulic springs and dampers networked via a central control unit, and their rebound and the resultant flow of hydraulic fluid drives a compact current generator. Performance statistics are unavailable as of now.

The G-Code attempts to give a look ahead to how the Mercedes-Benz design philosophy could evolve. This SUC is a way for certain futuristic technologies to trickle into mass production, and the company makes no claims about actually manufacturing this car in the foreseeable future. If and when it does, the SUC sure will turn heads and spread the green message on account of its zero-emissions status. Dream on!

 

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