2013 Frankfurt: Mercedes-Benz brings the CLA 45 AMG Racing Series Concept

Article by Christian A., on September 12, 2013

The new concept from Mercedes-Benz -- the CLA 45 AMG Racing Series Concept – was displayed at the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show (IAA). This new concept is believed to be a preview for another customer sport racing car built by Mercedes-AMG. The CLA 45 AMG Racing Series is aimed at this very popular race series that features 2.0-litre turbocharged cars.

It may even reach international shores if there’s sufficient demand. Notably, the engine output and power transmission may vary. It’s possible that it may feature permanent all-wheel drive or purely front-wheel drive just like in the standard version. The CLA’s racing version will be getting a special suspension as well as a wider track at the front and rear.

The vehicle also permits several adjustments for an individual racetrack setup. Other aspects that can be adjusted are the suspension level, spring rate and damper characteristics similar to the track and camber at the front and rear axles. In addition, the racing car comes with an AMG high-performance braking system with ventilated discs all-round and is fitted with an anti-lock system.

Moreover, it comes with a new body kit, which includes a new front and rear apron, flared wings and side sill panels. Furthermore, it gets an imposing width due to its treadless racing tires. The interior comes with a roll-over cage built from high-strength steel, Recaro sport bucket seats and integrated fire extinguishing system. Vehicle control is perfect due to its racing steering wheel with shift paddles for gearshifts.

The new Mercedes CLA45 AMG is provided, as standard, with variable AMG 4MATIC all-wheel drive system, which was developed with a focus on both performance and dynamism.

This new vehicle features a compact power take-off unit (PTU) that – when fully integrated in the seven-speed sports transmission system – provides power stability to the rear powertrain. This PTU doesn’t have its own oil circuit, so its lubrication is provided from the oil circuit of the sports transmission. With this configuration, this PTU unit in the CLA45 AMG is much lighter than other systems that distribute power by adding another component that features its own oil circuit.

Along with friction-minimized tapered roller bearings, the PTU is highly efficient. Furthermore, the AMG 4MATIC all-wheel drive system is now up to 25 percent lighter than other all-wheel-drive versions as installed in rival models.

Power from the AMG 2.0-liter four-cylinder turbo engine is sent to the rear axle through a two-part propeller shaft while an electro-hydraulically controlled multiple-disc clutch has been integrated with the rear axle differential to achieve a more favorable weight distribution.

Interestingly, this multiple-disc clutch could instantly determine once there is a slip at the front axle. Once a slip is detected, a hydraulic pump would then press the discs together and then seamlessly reroutes torque to the rear wheels as needed. To allow for an incredibly fast response, the hydraulic pump is always active, which means that it doesn’t become idle that it would need to be restarted when needed.

Meanwhile, power distribution in the new CLA45 AMG is fully variable. For example, during normal driving, the CLA45 AMG employs front-wheel drive to achieve optimal efficiency. However, when a more dynamic drive is needed, the AMG 4MATIC all-wheel drive system could split the torque between front and rear axles up to a ratio of 50:50 percent.

Of course, there are a number of factors that affect the power distribution ratio like vehicle speed, lateral and longitudinal acceleration as well as steering angle. Also considered is the chosen gear, speed difference between the individual wheels as well as accelerator position.

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