Stuttgart – The internationally renowned EcoGlobe environmental prize, awarded for ecological innovations, goes to Daimler AG in 2012, too. In the category “Concept vehicles”, the Mercedes-Benz F 125! research vehicle was distinguished with the first prize. In addition, the Mercedes-Benz Citaro FuelCELL Hybrid bus was awarded the second prize in the category “Mobility models”. The 2012 EcoGlobe award honours Daimler’s commitment to sustainable, pioneering mobility. Professor Dr Herbert Kohler, Head of Group Research at Daimler AG and Environmental Protection representative of the Group, received the prize in Cologne. “We are proud that our commitment to environmental protection has been acknowledged by the EcoGlobe jury again this year. The F 125! shows that large saloons can continue to look forward to a brilliant future thanks to innovative technologies and emission-free drive systems”, according to Professor Dr Herbert Kohler.
F 125! – Pioneering concept for large, luxurious automobiles
The Mercedes-Benz F125! research vehicle provides a visionary prospect of how fully emission-free individual mobility for luxury-segment vehicles can be made possible in future. The researchers and developers at Mercedes-Benz have incorporated already well-proven concepts and technologies which are not yet available today, but for which basic research has shown great future promise, and therefore a realistic chance of implementation in future series-production cars. The decisive new innovation themes here are: a consistent further development of fuel-cell drive systems in combination with plug-in hybrid drive systems, as well as a revolutionary fuel tank technology: the so-called “structure-integrated hydrogen composite storage unit”; lighter and more efficient storage batteries, in this case based on lithium-sulphur technology, developed by Mercedes-Benz in parallel with the ongoing further development of the lithium-ion batteries in current use.
Mercedes-Benz Citaro FuelCELL hybrid: the future of public transport
The EcoGlobe jury also distinguished the Mercedes-Benz Citaro FuelCELL hybrid urban bus, awarding it second place in the category “Mobility models”. It employs the most advanced fuel cell technology. The hybrid system, consisting of fuel cell, electric motor and lithium-ion batteries, is characterised by its extraordinary environmental compatibility: in operation the bus emits no pollutants whatsoever and is virtually noiseless. It makes permanent emission-free local public transport in highly stressed inner cities possible and is thus an important building block for the mobility of the future. Thanks to the improved fuel cell components and the hybridisation with lithium-ion batteries (27 kW/h), the new Citaro FuelCELL hybrid consumes 50 percent less hydrogen than the previous generation. This has made it possible to reduce the number of tanks from the nine of the formerly tested fuel cell buses to now seven storage units with a total capacity of 35 kg of hydrogen. The fuel cell bus has thus a range in excess of 300 kilometres, with a refill time of around 8–10 minutes. The Mercedes-Benz Citaro FuelCELL hybrid can thus be operated in just as uncomplicated and flexible a manner as the diesel vehicles of today.
EcoGlobe is the first award in the automotive and mobility sector that only takes ecological criteria into account. The EcoGlobe award was launched in 2007 as a joint initiative of action artist HA Schult, the CAR Center Automotive Research of Duisburg-Essen University, DEVK Insurance, Cologne, and the ACV Automobile Club. Peter Altmaier, Federal Minister for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety, is its patron.