DENVER, Colo.—Mercedes-Benz is not actually hanging round in relation to new electrical autos, all launched underneath the brand new Mercedes-EQ sub-brand. It has electrified its widespread little crossover, the GLB, to create the EQB, which does the whole lot the gas-powered automobile does, however rather more effectively. But it surely has additionally constructed a completely new EV-specific platform referred to as EVA2, for bigger, extra premium Mercedes EVs. The primary of these hit the street final 12 months—its flagship EQS sedan—adopted by a barely smaller, barely cheaper follow-up referred to as the EQE sedan.
However massive sedans do not promote something like the way in which they used to, notably right here in North America. No, Individuals need SUVs, notably in the event that they’re on the lookout for an enormous luxurious one, as decided by the sheer variety of Mercedes GLSes I see once I go to California. Mercedes is sensible to this, and EVA2 is designed to make SUVs and sedans—as is the case with the 2023 EQS SUV. Actually, Mercedes is so assured of US market gross sales for the EQS SUV, it builds them in Alabama so they do not must be imported.
Mercedes’ first massive electrical SUV involves America in three flavors, every with an equivalent 107.8 kWh usable battery capability. The $104,400 EQS 450+ SUV incorporates a single rear-mounted, completely excited synchronous motor, outputting 355 hp (265 kW) and 419 lb-ft (568 Nm) of torque. That is additionally the longest-legged EQS SUV, utilizing its 107.8 kWh to journey 305 miles (490 km) because of a really slippery drag coefficient—for an SUV—of simply 0.26. Sadly, it did not have any of those variants in Denver for us to drive.
Subsequent up within the vary is the $107,400 EQS 450 4matic SUV, which equates to a $3,000 premium for a entrance motor—additionally a completely excited synchronous motor, albeit with a clutch that permits it to disconnect from the entrance axle in some drive modes, which will increase effectivity. The EQS 450 4matic SUV generates the identical 355 hp (265) kW because the rear-wheel drive 450+ (therefore they’ve the identical numerical designation), however the second motor will increase whole torque to 590 lb-ft (800 Nm). Including a second electrical motor does have an effect on vary nevertheless, chopping it by 20 miles to 285 miles (459 km).
Lastly, there’s the king of the hill: the $125,950 EQS 580 4matic SUV. Once more an all-wheel drive model with a completely excited synchronous motor for every axle, this one comes with a hefty 536 hp (400 kW) and 633 lb-ft (858 Nm) however nonetheless achieves a 285-mile vary like the marginally lesser 450 4matic.
We examined a 450 4matic and 580 4matic on the identical 100ish-mile loop in and round Denver. It excelled when dropped into the town’s morning rush hour visitors. You are well-isolated from the noise and fumes round you—the infotainment system even has an app to point out you the air high quality inside and outside the automobile—and the SUV’s driving place provides you an ideal view of the street forward. Plus, the adaptive cruise management driver help works successfully within the bumper-to-bumper grind.
Because the freeway opens up and visitors will get gentle, even the 450 4matic’s energy and torque are greater than ample to succeed in the velocity restrict rapidly or overtake a slower automobile. As we had been driving with out music taking part in, at freeway velocity there was sufficient wind noise from the mirrors to be noticeable however much less general noise than you’d expertise in an SUV with a loud, vibrating inner combustion engine.