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Mercedes-Benz Concept IAA Shows Off Variable Bodywork in Frankfurt

Motor Trend logo Motor Trend 2015-09-15 Megan Stewart
Mercedes-Benz Concept IAA Shows Off Variable Bodywork in Frankfurt

The Concept IAA, unveiled at the 2015 Frankfurt motor show, is a design study that combines striking vehicle design with great aerodynamics. The four-door coupe concept offers up a 0.19 drag coefficient, and when the Intelligent Aerodynamic Automobile concept hits roughly 50 mph, the shape of the vehicle is altered.

Drivers can also transform the Concept IAA from design mode to aerodynamic mode at the push of a button, as eight segments extend at the rear, increasing overall length by over 15 inches. The front flaps on the front bumper also extend by roughly an inch to the front and another 0.7 inches to the rear to improve airflow around the wheel arches. Active Rims alter cupping from just over 2 inches to zero, while a piece in the front bumper extends 2.3 inches to the rear to improve underbody airflow.

Mercedes Benz IAA Concept Front Three Quarter 01 © Provided by MotorTrend Mercedes Benz IAA Concept Front Three Quarter 01

See the latest vehicles from the 2015 Frankfurt motor show

To incorporate the moving parts that transform this concept, the designers used algorithmic design methods to assist in formulating the complicated geometric shapes. The aerodynamic components were also developed alongside numeric flow simulation, which helped in the testing of around 300 variants to clear the path for an eventual production model.

The level of technology seen on the exterior of the Concept IAA continues into the cabin, with elements drawn from the S-Class. With contrasting colors in anthracite and white, contrasting materials in aluminum and cut glass, and a touch-based operating philosophy, the interior steps into the near future of business sedans. The two-spoke steering wheel incorporates touch-based controls for better comfort and ergonomics, which helps reinforce the cabin's "hands on the wheel, eyes on the road" philosophy of design.

Mercedes-Benz wasn't the only luxury automaker to show a four-door coupe concept in Frankfurt. Porsche unveiled the Mission E, its all-electric, battery-powered four-seat sports car concept. While it doesn't offer the same level of aerodynamic technology with shifting body parts like the Mercedes-Benz Concept IAA, it does feature an industry-first 800-volt drive system and more than 590 hp.

Source: Mercedes-Benz

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