DaimlerChrysler to present pioneering drive concepts at the Challenge Bibendum 2006

* DaimlerChrysler will demonstrate its comprehensive expertise in the field of sustainable mobility

* Fuel cells, natural gas drives, diesels, hybrids: DaimlerChrysler offers a broad range of drive systems to take on the competition

* Participants demonstrate the performance capabilities and safety of their innovative drive technologies in competition

Paris/Stuttgart, Jun 01, 2006
From June 8 to 12 in Paris, DaimlerChrysler will be showcasing its forward-looking drive concepts and technologies for sustainable mobility in eight vehicles at the Challenge Bibendum 2006. As the world’s most important competition for environmentally compatible vehicles, it takes place the sixth time since 1998, with the participation of DaimlerChrysler. The event is organized by the French tire manufacturer Michelin and is directed at automakers, suppliers, energy companies, and research and development institutes from private and public sectors. Participants present advanced drive system and design concepts, as well as innovations that improve performance, comfort and safety of environmentally friendly vehicles.

The vehicles that DaimlerChrysler is presenting at the Challenge Bibendum demonstrate the Group’s research and development activities on the road to sustainable mobility. Two Mercedes-Benz A-Class “F-Cell” vehicles, a B-Class “F-Cell” car, and a Mercedes-Benz Citaro bus equipped with an emission-free fuel cell drive system will represent the current state of development of this technology. The Mercedes-Benz bionic car distinguishes itself through unsurpassed aerodynamics, stability and light construction. The vehicle is equipped with a CDI engine, and achieves extremely low emissions with the help of a sophisticated exhaust gas purification concept. SCR (selective catalytic reduction) technology plays an important role by reducing nitrogen oxide emissions by as much as 80 percent. The smart fortwo cdi hybrid concept car combines a diesel drive system with an electric motor, and it demonstrates that hybrid systems can not only reduce fuel consumption, but also offer additional driving pleasure. Also on display will be the Mercedes-Benz E 200 NGT and the smart fortwo cng, which employ a bivalent gasoline/natural gas drive system. Whereas the E-Class model is already available on the market, the fortwo concept car demonstrates the future potential of this drive system for the smart brand. A Mercedes-Benz E-Class that runs on a BtL (biomass-to-liquid) fuel known as SunDiesel demonstrates the contribution that second-generation synthetic fuels can make to sustainable mobility.

The focus at this year’s Challenge Bibendum will be on the energy challenge for tomorrow’s road transport, urban mobility and road safety. On June 9 and 10, the vehicles’ capabilities and safety will be demonstrated in competition. The tests will be conducted at the CERAM circuit of the Mortefontaine Automobile Testing and Research Center near Paris. A rally on June 11 will take the vehicles into the center of Paris, where the public will have the opportunity to learn about the current status of environmentally compatible mobility. An international symposium on sustainable mobility will be held in Paris on the last day of the event (June 12).

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