With the research project F 300 Life-Jet on show at the 57th Frankfurt Interna-tional Motor Show (IAA), Daimler-Benz was airing some new ideas on vehicle concepts of the future for the young and young at heart. The three-wheeler research study, equipped with intelligent technology, blends the special thrill and cornering dynamics of a motor cycle with the safety and comfort of a saloon car - a combination which offers unrivalled driving enjoyment.
Thanks to a new active tilt control system, the front wheels and body of the twoseater lean into the bend when cornering. This means the F 300 Life-Jet combines cornering speeds comparable with those of a motor cycle with maximum standards of active safety. The tilt control also increases the ride comfort for the passengers, who hardly need to brace themselves against centrifugal forces when cornering. A sophisticated electronic system uses the vehicle speed, acceleration, steering angle and yaw to calculate the exact angle of tilt required in any particu-lar situation.
The electronic commands are passed on to a hydraulic cylinder on the front axle which, with reference to the steering angle, pushes one of the two spring struts outwards to produce the desired degree of lean. The maximum tilt angle is 30 degrees.
Engine and transmission taken from the A-class
The three-wheeler’s engine and transmission are space-savingly accommodated between the interior compartment and the rear wheel. The Daimler-Benz researchers decided to use the 1.6 litre 75 kW/102 hp engine from the new Mercedes-Benz A-class. The four-cylinder unit accelerates the F 300 Life-Jet from 0 to 100 km/h in just 7.7 seconds. With a top speed of 211 km/h, the innovative three-wheeler boasts the performance of more powerful sports cars or roadsters.
In the new European driving cycle, the engine consumes just 5.3 litres of fuel per 100 km/h (NEDC overall consumption).
Aluminium chassis with removable roof sections
The two-seater research car has an aluminium chassis which weighs only 89 kilograms. Points of interest on the body include an upward-swivelling door for the driver, a rear-swivelling passenger’s door and a hardtop of aluminium and trans-parent plastic, which makes the F 300 Life-Jet an uncompromising all-weather, all-year-round contender. The roof is split into two halves. To turn the three-wheeler into an open roadster, these can be quickly and easily removed and stowed away in a compartment over the rear wheel.
Headlamp with automatic cornering control
A new-design front headlamp with three reflector zones and two bulbs offers maximum illumination when cornering. The headlamp is equipped with an electronic control system which is linked to the active tilt control. It adjusts the headlamp position in response to the tilting of the body and if necessary activates an additional cornering light. This increases the width of the dipped beam by more than 80 per cent.
The direction indicators, brake lights and side marker lights of the research vehicle feature a new, space-saving neon lighting technology. The low beam is automatically switched on by a sensor at nightfall or when entering a tunnel.
The F 300 Life-Jet in dialogue with show visitors
Daimler-Benz will taked the unveiling of the F 300 Life-Jet at the Frankfurt International Motor Show as an opportunity to engage in dialogue about the new concept with visitors attending the Show. The company will look closely at the public’s reactions, which will influence its decision whether or not to build a novel, activelifestyle vehicle of this kind in a production version.