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
The battery's direct current is converted into a three-phase alternating current and fed to the four motors by an electronic control unit. Two low-temperature cooling circuits regulate the motors' and electronics' operating temperature; in cold conditions an electric heating element warms things up, in hot ones the aircon system can help cool things down. The batteries weigh 450kg, and the E-cell's overall weight is 2.1 tonnes, around 300kg more than the standard SLS.
A few other things: because the E-cell gains front-wheel drive, it swaps its double wishbone set-up for a multi-link suspension configuration. The steering is now electro-hydraulic. Though it features ABS and ESP, there's no traction control. The E-cell's four-motor system also allows for torque vectoring, but it's not yet operational on the car we're driving. Braking is by ceramic composites - a whopping 402mm in diameter at the front, 360 at the rear.