Mercedes has spent the last year or so dangling a world-beating hybrid hypercar right in front of our noses, slowly trickling out details about the styling and powertrain to keep us all hanging on. And for a very, very select few, it looks like it was worth the wait.
At first glance, you probably wouldn’t call the Project ONE (Project ONE…P-ONE…P1…McLaren’s lawyers are drooling) an F1 car for the road; for all its ridiculous features, it’s still got mirrors, doors, a roof, and two seats, much like an car. But if you squint (as the car appears to be doing), you’ll see that it has no back window, a frankly inappropriate number of hood louvres, and the badge appears to be a decal instead of a piece of metal or even plastic. I suppose an S-Class hood ornament wouldn’t have been very aerodynamic.
The grille takes the E-Class’s gaping fish maw to a whole new level, and Mercedes rounds out the car’s marine countenance with an actual dorsal fin running down the center of the car, with a Pagani-style roof intake on one end and an active rear wing on the other.
Most of you have probably heard about the Project ONE’s powertrain, but if you haven’t, it bears repeating. The rear wheels are driven by a puny 1.6L V6 that’s turbocharged to the moon and back, which is linked to two 120 kW electric motors. The front wheels are driven by two more independent 120 kW electric motors (meaning that the car’s electric-only mode turns it into a front-wheel drive F1 car). This gives it over 1,000hp and a top speed of over 217 mph, as well as a redline of 11,000 rpm that necessitates an engine rebuild approximately every 31,000 miles. Yikes.
On the inside, it has two seats (barely) that appear to be part of the chassis itself, lots of Alcantara, and a rectangular steering wheel with many buttons and an airbag shoehorned inside. In true Mercedes fashion, there are two massive HD screens, and even a phone holder for convenience. For convenience! It’s an F1 car, but with convenience!
If, for some reason, you actually want to fork over money for this, you’ll fork over quite a lot: the Project ONE will cost a cool 2.275 million Euros, or $2,723,288.75. Since it’s a Mercedes, this amount likely doesn’t include heated seats or blind spot monitoring, but that’s the price you pay to make the school run in about 12 seconds. One child at a time.