Mercedes has announced the development of an Intelligent HYBRID system that can analyze the road ahead to maximize the car's performance and fuel efficiency.

Mercedes has announced the development of an Intelligent HYBRID system that can analyze the road ahead to maximize the car's performance and fuel efficiency.

Jointly developed with the assistance of the company's F1 team, the Intelligent HYBRID system uses data from the COMAND Online navigation system to calculate the energy recuperation potential of the road ahead. The information is then analyzed so the hybrid battery charge is optimized at all times.

As Mercedes explains, most hybrid vehicles waste energy when driving downhill because the batteries are too full to take advantage of the "incidental free recuperation energy associated with driving downhill." In order to avoid this, the system will utilize the electric motor in advance of a downhill situation to save fuel and drain the battery so it can accept the maximum amount of charge.

Mercedes says the fuel savings will depend on the topography of where the car is driven but the "more mountains there are, the higher the fuel savings will be."

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