Mercedes harkens back over 80 years for the look of the EQ Silver Arrow concept debuting during Monterey Car Week. The aerodynamic shape takes direct cues from the 1937 W125, capable of reaching a record-setting-for-the-time 268.9 miles per hour (432.7 kilometres per hour). Rather than its inspiration’s supercharged V12, the new show car opts for a fully electric powertrain.
The company imagines the EQ Silver Arrow as having 738 horsepower (550 kilowatts) and an 80-kilowatt-hour battery pack. Mercedes knows that the whine of an electric motor doesn’t yet stir the soul of auto enthusiasts like a combustion engine, so inside drivers have the choice to hear a current Formula 1 car or a Mercedes-AMG V8.
The EQ Silver Arrow has room for just a single occupant, and the person sits in the centre of the vehicle. Around them, there’s a smoothly styled body in carbon fibre that looks capable of slipping through the air with ease. The rear features an active spoiler that can extend when necessary. Metallic covers hide part of the 24-inch wheels, but the exposed portion shows off some of the 168 spokes on each one. The Alubeam Silver paint pays tribute to the colour of the classic Silver Arrows race cars. Despite only having room for one, the concept measures an immense 17 feet 5 inches (5.3 meters) long.
Inside, the cabin mixes natural materials like leather and solid walnut with high-tech touches like a digital instrument panel. There’s a second display in the centre of the steering wheel. Alubeam Silver Alcantara covers each side of the cockpit as a way to evoke the exterior in a softer way.
Mercedes incorporates a little video game into the cockpit, too. When drivers want to have fun, they can activate a feature that superimposes a virtual racetrack over the actual road. There’s also a car to compete against and a Virtual Race Coach to help improve a person’s driving skills.