Professor Sid Watkins, the official FIA Grand Prix chief medical officer, now has a new Mercedes-Benz C 55 AMG estate as a medical car to ensure that he can reach and treat racing drivers who have been involved in an accident as quickly as possible. The communication system, chassis and brakes of the high-performance car, which is powered by a 5.5-litre V8 engine that delivers 270 kW/367 hp, were remodelled especially for the Formula 1 world championships. On the monitor of the medical carís COMAND system, the occupants can follow the race live. The car also boasts a radio system for communicating with the race organisers, roof lights and strobe lights front and rear. A high level of safety for Professor Sid Watkins and the three medical assistants is guaranteed by four-point belts at each seat. The roomy boot of the C55 AMG estate houses a complete emergency aid kit to treat severely injured patients.
Cooperation Between Production and
Overall Vehicle Development at AMG
AMG production, which specialises in small-batch series and customised individual components, and the test team from AMG overall vehicle development were responsible for the development, track tests and bodywork of the two safety cars and two medical cars (one main vehicle and one replacement in each case). The engineers and technicians responsible were greatly helped by the companyís 37 years of experience in motor sports and the development of high-performance sports cars. Numerous test drives were conducted at different Formula 1 tracks in order to determine the chassis tuning and ensure that of all the components satisfy strict safety requirements. Racing driver Bernd Maylander was involved in every stage of the development. Two highly qualified AMG engineers are overseeing the operation of the AMG vehicles at all 18 Formula 1 race meetings.