Mercedes-Benz has finally unveiled its all-electric EQS luxury sedan. The German automaker will aim to take over the luxury electric vehicle market currently occupied by Tesla and Lucid. While the Tesla Model S has been the mainstay for the luxury electric sedan segment, Lucid is also coming up with its Air sedan. The Air specifically targets luxurious vehicles such as Mercedes Benz S-Class. So expect the Air and EQS to face off with each other in a direct duel.
The lengthy and detailed press release on Thursday supplied every bit of information about the EQS. Every bit except how much the vehicle will cost. This includes battery pack capacity, its WLTP-rated range, and its performance specifications, all of which are important figures for anyone interested in getting the most bang for their buck when driving a luxury vehicle. You can expect a high five-figure or low six-figure tag based on competitors in the same sector. The Model S from Tesla ranges from $79,900 to $149,990, not including incentives, while the Lucid Air ranges from $77,400 to $169,000, also not including incentives.
Mercedes-Benz and Daimler CEO Ola Kaellenius said the all-electric EQS is ready for the most critical and picky customers that the automaker has dealt with in its history.
The EQS is designed to exceed the expectations of even our most discerning customers. That’s exactly what a Mercedes has to do to earn the letter ‘S’ in its name. Because we don’t award that letter lightly.
The EQS will come in two variants: the EQS 450+ and the EQS 580 4MATIC. The latter will be the performance-oriented build of the vehicle. The 450+ will be a rear-wheel-drive setup with a power output of 329 horsepower and 550 N-m of torque. Mercedes says it can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph (96.5 kph) in 5.5 seconds.
The 580 4MATIC, on the other hand, will be an all-wheel drive. This includes 516 horsepower and 829 N-m of torque, which will accelerate the car to 60 mph (96.5 kph) in 4.1 seconds.
Both variants will have a battery pack of 107.8 kWh. Mercedes has claimed a range of 770 km (478 miles), but that is according to WLTP. The American EPA test will fetch a lower number. The charging system is rated at 400 volts, which can charge your vehicle in 31 minutes at a DC fast charger.
Interior and Exterior Design
The exterior shape is already optimized for obtaining maximum aerodynamic performance. The overall look is quite unlike the S-Class though. The sweeping A-pillar and C-pillar give an impression of the vehicle being a coupe more than a flagship sedan. And it’s quite long too, spanning more than 5 metres. Out of these, 3 metres go into the wheelbase, creating a lot of space on the inside. And with the dedicated electric vehicle platform (Electric Vehicle Architecture, or EVA) debuting through this car, Mercedes can push the wheels to the extreme ends and create more space in between.
The interior is everything you expect from a luxurious Mercedes sedan, and more. And the most stunning part of the interior is the Hyperscreen system. It consists of a total of three screens, one each in front of the driver and front-row passenger, and one in the centre. But the seamless integration of each screen with the next makes it feel like a single, floating, 56-inch touchscreen. With an OLED dashboard flanked by 15 speakers from Burmester, Mercedes has paid a lot of attention to user experience. The Hyperscreen also features eight CPU core, 24-gigabyte RAM and 46.4 GB per second RAM memory. This, Mercedes says, is the stand-out thing in the EQS, creating the “wow effect”.
Comparison with the Rivals
Tesla Model S and Lucid Air are the two main roadblocks standing between the EQS and glory. Model S Long Range currently has a 412-mile (663-km) range, but the upcoming Plaid+ variant will have around 520 miles (837 km). Lucid Air’s Dream Edition, which is the premium variant, will also have 519 miles (836 km) of range. Of course, these premium variants will come at prices greater than $150,000. If the EQS manages a 478-mile range at a lesser cost, it may steal the market from its competitors.
However, Model S and Lucid Air are both hyper-performing sedans, with mind-boggling acceleration timings and top speeds. Both these vehicles also boast of a stable driver-assist system, with full autonomy expected in the future. These vehicles are setting quarter-mile records and breaking lap records around Laguna Seca.
Mercedes, on the other hand, has focused on luxury, vehicle handling and overall efficiency. This means that customers looking for hair-raising specs probably won’t look at the EQS. But people who are fed up with Tesla’s impending quality issues will look at the German brand as an alternative. Mercedes is a reliable name in the industry, and the EQS will benefit from it.