The Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Electric Drive will become the most powerful electric production car in the world when it hits the road in June 2013.
Unveiled in production specification for the first time at the 2012 Paris motor show, the SLS AMG EV is more powerful than the V8-powered German muscle car on which it’s based and only fractionally slower, despite burning no petrol and producing no tailpipe emissions.
The Mercedes SLS AMG Electric Drive features four electric motors, with each one responsible for driving a single wheel, giving it the added benefit of constant all-wheel drive traction.
Together, the motors produce 552kW of power and a whopping 1000Nm of torque, making it the most powerful AMG in history – easily accounting for the 420kW/650Nm of the conventional SLS AMG’s naturally aspirated 6.2-litre V8.
The result of all that instant power and torque is a 0-100km/h sprint time of 3.9 seconds – leaving it just one-tenth adrift of the petrol-powered Gullwing and two-tenths short of the now-discontinued Tesla Roadster Sport EV.
The SLS AMG Electric Drive’s top speed is electronically limited to 250km/h, pulling up 67km/h short of the V8.
Powering the supercar’s electric motors is a 60kWh lithium-ion battery pack, which takes up to 20 hours to recharge from a standard household power point, but can be recharged using a fast-charge system in around three hours.
Joining the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Electric Drive’s dizzying set of numbers is another one: the price. At 416,500 euros ($517,000), the Electric Drive is close to two and a half times more expensive than its petrol-powered sibling, which itself costs a hefty $464,000 in Australia.