Miami - A sports car with a Mercedes G-Class inspired face is probably not something that most of us have ever imagined or even wished for, but we certainly admire its boldness, and the story behind it for that matter.
Created in collaboration between Mercedes-AMG and global star will.i.am, the WILL.I.AMG ‘The Flip’ concept car, which is being unveiled at the Miami F1 Grand Prix this weekend, is described as an “expressive design with a far-reaching message”.
According to Mercedes, the purpose of the joint project “The Flip - Innovation for Purpose” is to give more students from disadvantaged communities access to science, technology, engineering, arts and maths education.
Built by West Coast Customs, the concept car is based on the Mercedes-AMG GT 4-Door Coupe, but the body has been heavily modified. Not only does it have a face inspired by the G-Class, but it has been converted into an SLS-inspired two-door with backward-opening doors. Will.i.am didn’t see any need to modify the AMG model’s 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8 engine however.
"I didn't touch the engine, because AMG really does make the best engines,” will.i.am said. “The story of the founders of AMG truly inspires me and it is energising to collaborate with like-minded people who also seek continuous improvement."
Having grown up in a ghetto, will.i.am says he watched legendary hip hop artists rap about Mercedes cars, so it was always a dream to own one.
“For a lot of inner-city kids, owning a Mercedes is a symbol of progress and advancing out of struggle," he explained. "Now I’ve reached my goal and pushed even higher by re-imagining and creating my own vision of an AMG model.”
Mercedes-AMG Board Chairman Philipp Schiemer feels the success of his brand depends to a large extent on inspiring the next generation and giving them easy access to the latest technologies and digital progress.
“It is part of our tradition to always be pioneers and to dare to do something new. We are continuing this legacy into the future together with will.i.am and 'The Flip'”, Schiemer said.
For those who want to find out more about this unique concept car and how it was built, its creators have produced a six-part documentary series called ‘DRIVE’, which will premiere at the 2022 Cannes film festival.