The future of automobiles should be electric. In fact, 5 years ago, not every car maker had electric/hybrid vehicles. Now it is. Mercedes-AMG turbo technology isn’t spared by this trend and is, slowly, turning electric. As part of this combines high efficiency with additional driving dynamics. To implement this combination to optimum effect, AMG came with a new technology. The next vehicle generation will see the deployment of the electric exhaust gas turbocharger.
Text: Luca W., Mercedes-Benz © Images: Mercedes-Benz ©

This technology comes straight from Formula 1, named MGU-H. It resolves the conflicting goals between a small, fast-reacting turbocharger which achieves relatively low peak performance and a large turbocharger with a high peak performance but which on the other hand can suffer from turbo lag. To summarize, a small turbine has less inertia than a big one. So it takes more time and energy to bring it to motion. Remember that exhaust gases’ velocity and pressure give the turbine its rotation speed.

Turbocharger with integrated electric motor

To erase this inertia, a slim electric motor, measuring about 4 centimetres, is integrated directly on the charger shaft between the turbine wheel on the exhaust side and the compressor wheel on the fresh air side.

Mercedes-AMG turbo

Mercedes AMG turbo cars will feel atmospheric: no turbo lag at all

This electronically controlled motor drives the compressor wheel before this accepts the exhaust gas flow. The electrification of the turbocharger significantly improves immediate response from idle speed and across the entire engine speed range. The so-called turbo lag – the delayed response of a conventional turbocharger – is eliminated by the electric motor. The result is that the combustion engine responds even more spontaneously to accelerator pedal input. Added to which the entire driving feel is significantly more dynamic and agile. In addition, electrification of the turbocharger enables higher torque at low engine speeds, which also enhances agility and optimises acceleration. Even when the driver takes their foot off the accelerator or applies the brakes, the technology of the electric turbocharger is able to maintain the boost pressure at all times, so that there is always a continuous direct response.

The turbocharger can reach speeds around 170,000 rpm, which enables a very high rate of air flow. The turbocharger, electric motor and power electronics are part of the combustion engine’s cooling circuit to create an optimum temperature environment.

Are you still not convinced by the benefits of Formula One? Or Mercedes AMG engineering?