What you see here may look an awful lot like the Mercedes-Benz F015 concept from last year’s North American International Auto Show, however it’s actually an all-new concept from Mercedes showing its vision for the future of the executive sedan.
Despite what the badge might suggest, the Mercedes Concept IAA is not named after the German name for the Frankfurt Motor Show, Internationale Automobil-Ausstellung (IAA). It’s actually called the ‘Intelligent Aerodynamic Automobile’ and Mercedes claims it’s actually two cars in one thanks to some clever aerodynamic solutions.
While stationary or moving slowly, the Concept IAA can appear as a standard four-door car, however once it’s in motion, it transforms into one of the most aerodynamically efficient vehicles ever. Eight segments extend at the rear, increasing its total length by 390 millimeters, while flaps extend at the front to shoo air away from the wheel arches. This reduces the drag coefficient to 0.19, less than a Tesla Model S.
Powered by a gasoline/electric hybrid drivetrain, Mercedes says the Concept IAA has a total output of 279 horsepower and an electronically limited top speed of 250 km/h. In aerodynamic mode, capable of being activated at speed of up to 50 mph, the Concept IAA can travel 66 miles on electric power alone, compared to 62 miles in standard ‘design’ mode.
Those who have been in a current S-Class or S-Class Coupe will find the interior of the Concept IAA familiar, sporting similar design elements – albeit much more futuristic. With various touch screen displays and white leather throughout, Mercedes says the interior gives us an idea of what the cabin of a business sedan might look like in the near future.
The Concept IAA appears to build on the F015 concept, offering a more realistic vision of the future of high-tech motoring. It also gives us an idea of what kind of fuel-saving solutions to expect from Mercedes in coming years as automakers strive to meet tightening emissions standards.