If you’re at all a gearhead like most of the HotHardware staff, you’re no doubt familiar with the Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren. The supercar — then named the Vision SLR — was introduced in concept form at the 1999 Detroit Auto Show. The production model was introduced four years later with a 5.4-liter supercharged V8 engine producing 617hp (although it was unfortunately mated to a 5-speed automatic transmission; the only transmission in Mercedes’ stable that was capable of handling 575 ft-lbs of torque in the 3,800+ pound vehicle). A later variant, the 722 Edition, came with an even more impressive 650hp.
Over a decade after the initial release of the SLR McLaren, Mercedes and its AMG skunkworks division are hard at work on its true spiritual successor (we’re not counting the less powerful SLS that bowed in 2010). With vehicles like the Ferrari LaFerrari, McLaren P1 and Porsche 918 Spyder packing around 900hp thanks to a mix of good old fashioned internal combustion engines and new-age electric motors, it’s about time for Mercedes to jump back into the fray with a rip-roarious competitor.
The latest reports suggest that Mercedes’ new hypercar will forgo the front-mounted engine of the SLR McLaren in favor of a mid-engine arrangement. The vehicle is expected to be constructed primarily of carbon fiber to keep weight down and a supercharged V8 will once again provide the primary motivation for the vehicle. However, this time around, Mercedes is expected to mount two 125kW electric motors at the front axle, which gives it all-wheel-drive capabilities.
Total system output is pegged at around 1050hp, compared to 949hp, 903hp and 887hp for the LaFerrari, P1 and 918 Spyder respectively. Given the lightweight construction and monstrous powertrain specs, we expect that the SLR McLaren successor will easily surpass 200mph and should be able to dash to 60mph in well under three seconds.
Production of the vehicle is expected to be extremely limited with a maximum of 750 units reaching well-heeled customers. As for pricing, don’t expect to pay any less than one million euros when it arrives later this decade. However, if one million euros is too rich for your blood, there’s always the Mercedes-AMG GT, which is priced from only $130,000.