Concept cars are not just buzz-generating showpieces. They hint at the design direction of a brand, with styling cues and technology filtering down to production models.
With its sweeping lines, Mercedes-Benz's EQ Silver Arrow all-electric concept offers an early, if idealistic, look at some design elements and technologies that might end up in the automaker's wave of planned electric vehicles.
The one-seater EQ Silver Arrow, unveiled at the Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance on Friday, pays homage to the W 125 Grand Prix racer, considered the most powerful race car ever for three decades. The Mercedes-built W 125, designed by Rudolf Uhlenhaut, was used by Rudolf Caracciola to win the 1937 European Championship. The twelve-cylinder W 125 held the speed record on public roads (432.7 kph, 268.9 mph) until November 2017.
The 738 hp EQ Silver Arrow has a driving range of more than 400 km (250 miles). Side air vents help cool the 80 kWh battery.
While the EQ Silver Arrow isn't expected to make it to production, it will likely influence the 10 EQ-branded electric vehicles Mercedes plans to rollout by 2022. The EQ vehicles, which include a subcompact sedan, compact crossover and a luxury sedan, are part of 50 electrified vehicles Mercedes has on the drawing board.
"Intended for acceleration and driving pleasure, it embodies progressive luxury and provides an insight into the future of our design," Gorden Wagener, Daimler's chief design officer said of the EQ Silver Arrow in a statement. "The show car drives the design idiom of our new EQ product and technology brand to the top."
All-electric speedster concepts are popular at this year's Pebble Beach showcase. On Thursday, Infiniti unveiled its Prototype 10 single-seater concept.