We all knew this day would come didn’t we? AMG switching to a 4 cylinder turbo hybrid powerplant for their high performance cars revealed the writing on the wall. Mercedes-Benz has finally unveiled the new EQS, a fully electric plug-in hybrid. Their German counterparts were ahead of the game, Porsche has the Taycan, VW had the ID.4, and Audi had the e-Tron GT. Now it’s triple spoke’s turn. Mercedes wants to turn the EQ brand into a fully running sub brand like they have with AMG. While it’s not an in-house tuning company, it certainly is more valuable to the company in these coming times. Mercedes has made the EQS a bit more tame from the concept photos. Understated however, is what this car is not. Mercedes has made the EQS look super modern and curvy, keeping smooth body lines. That modern look continues about everywhere making it an exquisite vehicle inside and out. From the fully digital dashboard to the little tiny details like the power symbol embedded into the EQS logo, the EQS attempts to put itself a step above the rest of the German EV competition.
This EV is no Chevy Bolt or little puny engine, it’s a raging mustang. The base model will hoist a 329 horsepower RWD motor, while a monstrous 512 horsepower AWD motor is available. Imagine that much power being put down with instant torque as well as AWD off the line. Your kids will get to soccer practice speedy quick, we guarantee it. The EQS features the EQ platform— aptly named, a platform that MB developed exclusively for electric models. On it will join the EQB and the EQA and possibly the EQE… ultimately we’ll get the EQZ. Stupid jokes aside, the EQS is definitely not one. 406 lb-ft or 611 lb-ft of torque is not exactly a laughing matter. It is settled quiet among there at the top of the EV kings, challenging even the Model S for its spot. All that power being put straight into the ground would make for a jaw dropping experience… or may I say electrifying? What’s impressive is that the EQS will feature rear axle steering, 4 wheel steering if you will, something that comes at kind of a luxury especially at this price point. Even modern day sports cars are reluctant to add this feature in. Adaptive air ride suspension rivals MagneRide as one of the best suspension systems to date— albeit expensive to replace when broken. The cabin itself would be a quiet ride, paired with big rims alongside an electric motor— road noise would be a thing of the past.
The cabin itself is… snow white. White. A lot of it. It looks like a bunch of lab scientists had a party and just left their lab coats in the car. We’ve seen this before in the ID.4 and this seems to kick it up a notch. I’m not sure how I feel about it. The aesthetic part of me loves it and thinks it looks elegant and up with the new minimalistic look while the practical part of me can only think about how much of a pain it would be to maintain and clean. The cabin itself is fitted with a massive digital dashboard. Yes, I said dashboard. The entire [bleep]ing thing is glass and is touchable. We really are in the future now.
It has to be mentioned however that while this does put out immense amounts of horsepower for its class, it’s not a performance car. It’s a full on luxury vehicle. In the back is where the fun really starts to pop out at you. Quilted pillows, rear screens and infotainment, plenty of legroom thanks to that late sloped rear end, and an integrated MBUX system all steal the show behind the driver. That massive infotainment screen in the front also has MBUX integrated, and is a perfect match to such a modern and ahead of the time vehicle.
In terms of practicality, Both EQS models get their power supply from a lithium-ion battery pack with a usable capacity of 107.8 kWh. While Mercedes hasn’t released the sedan’s EPA-rated driving range, the automaker estimates it’ll be good for about 478 miles based on the less-taxing European WLTP test cycle.
MB’s excellent aerodynamic engineering prowess is on full display here. With a drag coefficient of one of the lowest EVs in history, the aerodynamics play a huge role into getting the EQS such good MPGe. The rear sloped roof is meant to look more modern, but it doesn’t look gimmicky or forced. It looks gorgeous and fits with the car so well. No sharp edges or jagged lines mean that the EQS can be as slippery as possible at every point through its build, leaving no stone unturned in crafting what should be a great luxury EV.
The EQS has kind of created its own market. While EVs in the past aim to be affordable or performance oriented, the EQS has taken on the S-Class type of niche. Leaving affordability in the dust, MB states it should be around $100,000 or just shy of it. Obviously options and features will skyrocket the price past that mark, but it goes to show what Mercedes is attempting to gnaw at with the EV market. It’s already solidified itself as a premium automaker, especially here in the States, so it would only make sense for the brand to expand into the luxury world of EVs. It itself has stated that it would be the first luxury full electric vehicle, and we haven’t seen any reason to doubt it. With plenty more automakers joining the EV realm we’ll expect that slot to be contested, but for now the EQS is shaping up to be a great vehicle.