Autocar: Mercedes is developing a range of four-cylinder petrol engines and plug-in hybrid technology
Merc’s new four-cylinder engines are a key part of its strategy to moves towards the EU tailpipe emissions target of 95g/km by 2020, a 45g/km reduction on the current 140g/km figure. They will be introduced into the new MFA range of Mercedes models – including the new A-class and B-class – from 2014, as well as the core of Renault’s range.
Despite this march to ever-lower carbon output, [Merc’s head of powertrain strategy Jurgen] Doring says Mercedes will continue to offer large luxury cars in the range, its heartland of sales. “Even in 2020, the Mercedes customer will still be able to buy a big, powerful car,” he predicted.
The secret will be plug-in hybrids, which Doring believes could eventually push tailpipe emissions of some large Mercedes models down to as low as 60g/km. “The E300 hybrid’s 109g/km is just the start,” he said. Doring predicts around one in four future Mercedes will have a plug-in hybrid drivetrain.