Mercedes-Benz EQS enters luxury EV sedan battlefield
Mercedes-Benz is a late entrant to the electric vehicle segment and their current lineup includes the EQA, EQC crossovers and the EQV Van, all of which have received a lukewarm reception so far. But as the Tesla Model S and Porsche Taycan show that electric sedans can be desirable, the Mercedes-Benz EQS makes its debut.
The Mercedes Benz EQS will be the brand’s electric flagship, a zero-emissions alternative to the S-Class if you will. The EQS’ front end stoops right down, taking leverage of the room that may have been eaten up by an engine otherwise. The windshield is also raked sharply. This flows into the arched roofline, creating a “one-bow” shape, reminiscent of the many four-door coupes. This sleek body shape gives the EQS a record-breaking drag coefficient of 0.20. The front end is detailed by the large gloss black panel, in the place of the grill. The LED headlamps neatly fit onto their sides, connected to one another by an LED strip. The LED tail lamps are integrated into a full-width light bar with a helix design for the light.
Mercedes Benz EQS utilises the flexibility of a dedicated EV architecture by liberating more room inside the vehicle. The instant you step into the cabin of this EV, an MBUX “Hyperscreen” catches your eye. This is a large glass panel on the dashboard, housing three separate screens, a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, a 17.7-inch center touchscreen for the MBUX infotainment system, and another 12.3-inch screen for the passenger. The two rear passengers can also play with their separate 12.3-inch screens if the optional Executive Rear Seat package is added in. The package also adds a removable MBUX tablet for the middle passenger as well. The separate screens allow each passenger to personalize many settings or watch their own preferred media through Bluetooth headphones. Even if the EQS is somewhat equivalent to the S-Class, the EV does not get its IC-engined cousin’s more opulent rear captain seats. You have to make do with a bench seat layout but this is no bad news. The EQS comes fitted with almost all the creature comforts that the S-Class comes with, including heated, and massage-equipped seats.
Being a flagship EV from Mercedes Benz, the EQS does not run short of technology. The MBUX augmented reality navigation system from the S-Class comes standard in the EQS. This can overlay driving directions on a video of the road and display them on the centre screen. If the optional AR heads-up display is added, they can be projected onto the windshield as well. Mercedes Benz has thrown in their complete driver assistance technology arsenal into the EQS, starting from the Distronic Adaptive Cruise Control, automatic emergency braking for forward, rear and cross-traffic collisions and assisted steering with an automated lane change. If an inevitable collision is detected, a Pre-Safe Impulse technology kicks in, raising the EQS by up to 70 mm to direct the impact away from the occupants. There is a Power Nap option that allows the passengers to doze off while charging by reclining the front seats, blinding the window with shades, and playing calm music. When the time comes to wake up, the EQS increases the ambient light slowly and the seats return gently to the upright position.
The interesting bits of the Mercedes Benz EQS are under its skin. There are two EQS trims available. The entry-level EQS 450+ gets a single electric motor on the rear axle and it produces 329 hp and 550 Nm of torque. The higher model is the EQS 580 4MATIC which adds a front electric motor, making it an all-wheel drive. This trim churns out a total of 516 hp and 828 Nm of torque. The trick up the sleeve of the EQS is its range. The EQS is expected to return a mind-blowing range of 770 kms, as per the WLTP cycle. The EV sedan can thank its smooth aerodynamic body for this achievement. The charging speeds are at par with the competition. A 110-kW DC fast charging setup will juice up the EQS battery from 10 percent to 80 percent in 35 minutes. When hooked up to a home circuit, the charging will take 11 hours.
The official price of the Mercedes Benz EQS is not announced yet but rumours suggest that the pricing should mirror that of their fossil-fuel-powered sibling, the S-Class. This should put it squarely against the top models of Porsche Taycan and Tesla Model S.