Mercedes has introduced no fewer than three new electric cars in 2021. First came the EQA, then the majestic EQS. And now it's the EQB's turn. It is on the same platform as the EQA. This has not been developed exclusively for EVs, the GLA and GLB with petrol engines also have this technical basis.
The appearance of the EQB therefore resembles that of the GLB, although the designers have given it a closed grille, and different headlights and taillights. The EQB has the same 66.5 kWh battery pack as the EQA, which gives it a range of up to 413 kilometers.
We test the EQB 350 4Matic, the top model with 292 hp, four-wheel drive and an electric motor on the front and rear axle. Optionally, you can order it with seven seats.
You never have to suffer in a chic Mercedes. The dashboard with two screens and turbine-like ventilation grilles offers a wonderful view. Thanks to the extensive arsenal of cameras and sensors, you don't have to do much as a driver: adaptive cruise control with traffic sign recognition ensures that the EQB 350 4Matic automatically keeps a distance from the vehicle in front. The system keeps a close eye on the prevailing speed limit.
If you enter the destination, the navigation system will calculate for you. Where can you fast charge on the road and how long does it take? The car always provides a buffer of 20 percent, so you don't have to worry about shivering in a deserted parking lot with an empty battery. It's great that the car takes all the thinking off your hands.
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Mercedes has used the slogan 'Das beste oder nichts' for years, but the brand does not live up to that with its electric cars. Kia, Tesla and Hyundai are the best, and actually Mercedes according to its own slogan is so nothing.
The range of the EQB 350 4Matic is 416 kilometers under optimal conditions. This means that the EQB has to beat competitors such as the Tesla Model Y Long Range (range: 507 km) and the Hyundai Ioniq 5 4WD (490 km). It therefore has the smallest battery pack: 66.5 kWh versus roughly 70 kWh.
Moreover, the Mercedes EQB 350 4Matic is not a fast-charging champion. You can fast charge with a maximum of 100 kW. Compared to competitors, that's a bit embarrassing. The Tesla Model Y can do it with about 200 kW, the Hyundai Ioniq 5 with 220 kW. Mercedes promises that the battery is charged from 10 to 80 percent in 35 minutes. The Hyundai Ioniq 5 does that twice as fast.
The EQB is optionally available with a second rear seat, but it is especially suitable for toddlers or the Houdini fan club. To be fair, Mercedes also admits that. They themselves advise anyone taller than 1.65 meters to sit all the way in the back.
Mercedes has not yet released a price for the EQB, which will only be on the market in the first months of 2022 and therefore does not benefit from the favorable addition rules of 2021.
For an indication, we include the price of the Mercedes EQA. It varies from 49,995 euros (EQA 250) to 58,163 euros (EQA 350 4Matic). The EQB will initially be on the market as 300 4Matic and 350 4Matic, the basic version EQB 250 will only be launched in the course of 2022. Count on a price for the top model that is well above 60,000 euros. For comparison: competitor BMW iX3 (74 kWh, 286 hp) costs 69,000 euros and a Tesla Model Y Long Range (approx. 70 kWh, 351 hp) 65,010 euros.
A Mercedes always has a certain class. Behind the wheel of the luxurious EQB 350 4Matic you will not be short of anything. The spring comfort is excellent, the tranquility comparable to a silent prayer in a Trappist monastery.
But in terms of range and charging speed, Mercedes is not the best. And the legroom in the back is – because of the high floor under which the battery pack is – a bit disappointing. You sit with bent knees and that is tiring over long distances.
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