Shame it doesn't plan to find out.
Porsche certainly impressed us all when it ran its 919 Evo around the Nürburgring and beat the outright lap record its own 956 had set decades prior. Its cross-town rival Mercedes thinks it could do even better, but it doesn't plan to find out.
“Could we beat the Porsche’s ‘Ring time? We could, probably. It would be close, but I think we could,” Mercedes-AMG boss Tobias Moers told Motoring. “I just don’t know what we’d do it for.” Those are some fighting words from a rival that doesn't intend to actually enter the fight.
Moers is referring to the hybrid hypercar his team is working on. The Project One, as it is tentatively known, was revealed as a concept last year at the Frankfurt Motor Show, employing a highly stressed 1.6-liter turbocharged V6 hybrid powertrain derived from the one it uses in Formula One, winning both titles the past four years running, and currently leading the championship for a fifth.
In the Project One concept, the advanced powertrain produces a combined 1,021 horsepower to reach 62 mph in an anticipated 2.5 seconds and top out at over 220 mph.
That might be enough to knock the 919 Evo off its perch – which would be even more impressive considering that AMG's is designed to be street-legal, and Porsche's doesn't even have to comply to any race regulations.
“Theirs is a racing car that isn’t actually fit to race anywhere, in any class,” said Moers. “We have to meet full homologation rules. We could do some things to the aero and take out the air-conditioner and fit some slightly different tires and then I’d be confident about it. But we’re not going to do that.” Shame. But you never know what the powers that be might decide in the future.