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Concept-Mercedes-Benz F 700 Research Car Preview

Concept-Mercedes-Benz F 700 Research Car Preview

By Jeff Youngs, February 24, 2012
Critical Knowledge:
  • Hints at next-generation S-Class

  • Utilizes DIESOTTO drive system technologies

  • Offers significantly increased fuel economy with low emissions

  • Equipped with PRE-SCAN active suspension

  • SERVO-HMI instruments improve ergonomics and ease driver load

  • REVERSE seating offers a reconfigurable cabin interior


Introduction
The Frankfurt Motor Show gives us our first look at the Mercedes-Benz F 700 Research Car, a future large luxury-touring sedan from the European car manufacturer. The stylized 4-seat sedan may offer a glimpse at the next-generation S-Class-from the advanced exterior styling and innovative interior appointments, to the sophisticated powerplant technology. "Like each of the research cars which preceded it, the Mercedes-Benz F 700 provides inspiring ideas for the technological future," according to Mercedes-Benz.

Design
Presenting a sleek silhouette to the wind, the large 4-door features three conventionally hinged doors and one rear-hinged "coach" door, affording easier passenger access to the opulent cabin. The very long wheelbase on the F 700 concept allows for an abundance of interior space for the occupants. REVERSE seating, an interior approach that orients individual seating positions either forward or rearward facing, affords maximum spaciousness and supreme comfort.

The instrument panel utilizes the Mercedes "SERVO-HMI" concept. Displays are easy on the eyes, and the number of controls has been significantly reduced. The computer's operating menu is simplified and more self-explanatory than current designs. In hands-free mode, a virtual-operating avatar-based assistant can "discuss" complicated inputs with the driver, such as the intended navigation destination.

Hardware
The exceptional fuel economy-notable for a vehicle of this size and class-is made possible by a "forward-looking" drive concept Mercedes-Benz calls "DIESOTTO." This engineering approach offers the high power of a spark-ignition engine with the exemplary torque and renowned fuel economy of a diesel. By carefully controlling the auto ignition, and utilizing direct injection and turbocharging, the 4-cylinder powerplant of the F 700 attains the same performance levels found in existing Mercedes-Benz 3.5-liter V-6 gasoline engines.

Cabin noise and vibration levels are kept low with the active PRE-SCAN suspension system. With two laser scanners reading the road ahead of the vehicle, the hydraulically controlled active suspension proactively compensates for irregularities, helping to smooth the harshness and create what Mercedes calls a "flying carpet" ride.

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