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Thread: Mercedes-Benz developing new Inline-6 engines to replace current V6 powerplants

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    Mercedes-Benz developing new Inline-6 engines to replace current V6 powerplants

    Development of Mercedes’ new in-line six-cylinder engines is well underway, Autocar has learned.

    Long regarded as a defining characteristic of the brand, its straight sixes were phased out in the mid-1990s.

    The engines are part of a new modular powertrain architecture that will spawn three and four-cylinder units as well as the six-pot versions. The new engines are expected to be launched in 2016 under the bonnet of the next-gen E-class, codenamed W213.

    The forthcoming C-class is likely to receive the new engine family in 2017 as part of a mid-life makeover. The engine line-up will include the new three-cylinder unit that is said to boast enough refinement to satisfy Mercedes customers.

    What’s being dubbed ‘Autobahn Pilot’ is also likely to arrive in 2016 on the E-class and in 2017 on the C-class. Company insiders say the system is an “autonomous driving assistant with an overtaking function”.

    For the short term, sources have now confirmed that the new C-class AMG model will get a twin-turbocharged 4.0-litre V8 engine. It will drive a seven-ratio Speedshift automatic transmission and have the option of all-wheel drive. A nine-speed Speedshift is also under development and is expected to appear during the 2017 mid-life refresh.

    Development work on the C-class plug-in hybrid is in its final stages, too, with Mercedes hoping to achieve a CO2 rating of 60g/km when the vehicle’s certification process is completed.

    Wow, so Mercedes continues to become more like BMW except for reliability, in which they are thankfully mimicing their old selves. First, they create C- and E-classes that are more engaging than their soft, over-sized BMW F30 and F10 competitors. Now, they are going to get the Inline-6 back! What's next, BMW adopting the V6 configuration?

    They are doing this for modularity, which is great. The future is in downsizing and a variety of forced-induction 3- and 4-cylinders. I hadn't envisioned such a glorious side-effect as an industry giant going back to the straight-six. Given the power and efficiency possibilities, especially when we observe what BMW has done with its turbo 6s, we'll probably see the I-6 S-class return.

    So those who know me know that I love the I-6 and kind of wish Nissan would make a new one for Infiniti and the GT-R. This is going to be glorious as it will be the first MB Inline-6 since the W124 glory days with the 300E. Also, given the parts and technology sharing that we are seeing more of between Daimler and Nissan, could we actually see this engine family in future Infinitis?

    If the straight-6 makes a comeback in premium vehicles, it would put huge pressure on Toyota/Lexus to do the same. Imagine its competitors from BMW, MB and Infiniti all sporting super-smooth turbo I-6s.
    Last edited by JayG35; 11-12-2013 at 04:33 AM.

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