Shock therapy: Merc’s electric SLS
TopGear does the morning rounds in the world’s fastest milk-float: the all-electric Mercedes SLS E-cell
Posted: 05 May 2011
Doesn't sound like one, though. In fact, it doesn't sound like anything. Standing right beside the E-cell, you can just make out a low, pulsing hum, the sort of sonic vibration most domestic appliances emit if you listen hard. It's weird, then disturbing, and then kind of cool. This is a 528bhp, 3.9 seconds-to-62mph supercar, yet it's... near-silent.
Though the novelty of the SLS's gullwing doors never fades, on this particular car there are more important things to note as you slide into it. For a one-off prototype, it's finished to an incredibly high standard. The seats, dash and trim are all immaculate. Run your eye around the cabin and you'll notice a unique set of instruments above the wheel, and a brand-new 10in touchscreen in the centre console. This is unique to the E-cell, and the interface is very similar to an iPhone's. Chances are that what we're looking at here is an early version of Mercedes' next-generation telematics. Works well, too.