The invisible Mercedes-Benz B-class
Mercedes-Benz shows off its fuel-cell vehicle in Stuttgart, Germany.
Mon, Mar 12, 2012 at 12:41 PM
Photo: ZUMA Press
Mercedes-Benz brought the big screen to real life when it turned a fuel-cell B-class into an invisible vehicle, a la the James Bond film “Die Another Day.” No, the car doesn’t really have cloaking capabilities, but Mercedes-Benz used several hundred thousand dollars worth of LED mats and employed the help of creative technicians to make the vehicle appear to be invisible.
A blog post by Justin Hyde of Yahoo! Autos explains how the technology works: “Using a camera mounted on the opposite side of the vehicle, the LEDs were programmed to reproduce the image from the camera at the right scale, blending the vehicle into the background from a few feet away.”
The Mercedes-Benz invisible car technology helps the automaker drive home the point that the car will have an invisible impact on the environment. The fuel cell Mercedes-Benz B class has a 100-mph top speed with a 230-mile emissions-free driving range, significantly higher than the 100 miles that electric vehicle drivers can count on.
However, hydrogen refueling stations are less prolific than mobile charging stations. At this time, the vehicle is undergoing testing by a few select California drivers, where the hydrogen refueling infrastructure is already in place.