Mercedes-Benz may not have had the first electric vehicle, but it has the most luxurious one.
EQS, a 2022 model, combines performance, modern luxury, cutting-edge technology and Mercedes tradition. In contrast, Tesla’s
most expensive offerings feature just about the same spartan interior as the base Model 3.
Sleek and curvy
The EQS’s sleek design, with sloping hood and curvaceous bodywork, makes it look fast even when it’s standing still. It also helps maximize aerodynamic efficiency — it has the lowest drag coefficient value of any production car, at 0.20.
This aerodynamic efficiency has an important role in extending the vehicle’s range to 480 miles (770 kilometers), based on European testing standards, or around 300 miles using the EPA’s, a more demanding standard. The EQS will be available in two trim packages: a single-electric-motor variant known as the 450+ that produces 333 horsepower and 406 pound-feet of torque, and an all-wheel-drive model, the EQS 580 4Matic, which has two electric motors, providing 523 horsepower and 611 pound-feet of torque.
A 0-to-60-mph sprint takes only 4.1 seconds for the all-wheel-drive model, and 5.5 seconds for the single-engine variant. Top speed for both trims is 130 mph. With a choice of two batteries — 90 or 107.8 kilowatt-hours, or kWh — you’ll be able to charge your Mercedes using super-fast 200 kW public chargers that can add 186 miles of range in just 15 minutes.
If you are going to be charging at home, however, be prepared to wait. The standard 11 kW onboard charger will take 10 hours to fully recharge the car’s battery, but you can pay extra for a 22-kW charger that cuts the time in half.
EQS is a large car. To increase its maneuverability, Mercedes has made both axles steerable. The rear-axle steering system enables 4.5 degrees and an optional 10 degrees of rear-wheel turning ability. That makes the car nimbler in tight turns and provides added stability.
Driving EQS is smooth, relaxing and silent, thanks to Airmatic, Mercedes’ bespoke air-suspension system. Airmatic uses air-suspension bellows and dampeners, as well as sophisticated sensors and algorithms to make every wheel respond proactively to the road profile for an extra smooth driving experience.
To make the drive even more silent, Mercedes offers the Burmester, an optional, high-end audio system featuring vehicle noise compensation (VNC). VNC is powered by an intelligent algorithm that continuously checks whether a designated music signal or interfering noise is present and adjusts the volume to reduce external sounds or engine noise. While muffling the outside noise, Burmester provides three background soundscapes of its own, which you can use to supplement what would otherwise be a silent ride.
EQS is both a beauty and a beast. Its sheer power is matched only by its futuristic and sleek interior, which is dominated by the “Hyperscreen” infotainment system. This cluster of screens consists of a 12.3-inch driver’s display, a 17.7-inch infotainment screen and a 12.3-inch screen for the front-seat passenger.
AI in the cabin
The screens are powered by an updated version of Mercedes’ MBUX infotainment system, which uses artificial intelligence (AI) to predict a user’s needs. The system displays information and prompts without having to scroll through menus. Its uses vary, from something as subtle as detecting driver glances and automatically dimming the passenger display to make it less distracting, to remembering speed bumps at certain locations to automatically adjust air suspension.
The car will also remember if you call someone at a certain time of day, and will suggest that you make the same call the next day at exactly the same time if you forget. If there is no passenger in the front seat, the corresponding display will not be interactive, featuring a starry screen animation instead of user-interface elements.
Finally, EQS will also feature optional 12-inch displays for back seat passengers.
Words truly don’t do justice to one of the most futuristic car interiors. Instead of elaborating any further, please feast your eyes on these photos instead:
You can choose between eight upholstery styles, which can be perfectly coordinated, as well as 190 decorative LED lighting features around the cabin.
Two designs are available for the steering wheel, and you can customize the interior using a wide range of materials, including glossy plastic and an unvarnished wood that somehow still perfectly fits the futuristic interior narrative.
The seats come in two styles — one for comfort and another for performance — and you can switch between 10 massage programs.
If you’re impressed by Mercedes’ luxury EVs, I have good news for you: EQS is just the beginning. Mercedes has an entire fleet of fully electric models in the pipeline in the next two to three years, including crossovers such as EQA (2022) and EQB (2023) as well as the luxury EQE (2022) sedan.
As for EQS, it is expected to go on sale this fall with a ballpark figure of around $100,000.
Are you excited for this luxury EV? Let me know in the comment section below.