Mercedes envisages electric future with 1930s-exceptional concept

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In Monterey, Calif., late on Friday, Mercedes-Benz revealed its latest concept car, the EQ Silver Arrow. It’s a reference to the brand’s original 1937 W 125 race car that set the record for fastest land-speed vehicle on a public road by traveling nearly 270 miles per hour, which record was only broken late last year by the Koenigsegg Agera.

The electric one-seater joins a long list of memorable concepts that Mercedes shows off every year in advance of the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance on the 2nd of sept. None of them will reach anything near production, but design Chief Gorden Wagener says they’re useful to illustrate how the brand’s future will look, embodied in one car.

Just as the name implies, it’s extremely long and thin. The car is more than 17 feet long but just 3 feet deep, with a carbon-fiber front splitter and side skirts with a lighting strip. Large, recessed EQ lettering heralds the company’s EQ brand of battery-electric vehicles, illuminated in blue in front of the rear wheels.

The “Alubeam Silver” paint work on the body of the car is similar to the type used on the original Silver Arrow cars. The rear diffuser also looks like those on vintage racers, with an extendable spoiler that acts as an air brake by increasing the wind resistance as the car decelerates.

Inside are gray, suede sidewalls, as well as aluminum-and-walnut trim; the saddle-brown leather is laser-etched with stars. The dashboard is curved in a three-dimensional panoramic screen that can project images from behind the car, and in the center of the steering wheel is an integrated touchscreen. A lever on the side of the seat adjusts the pedal height to better suit the driver’s height.

If the EQ Silver Arrow were to be manufactured for sale, Wagener said, it would have an output of 738 horsepower, thanks to a thin, rechargeable battery of roughly 80 kWh and a driving range of more than 250 miles.

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