The Mercedes EQE and EQS gave me a first taste of electric power without any range anxiety, the EQS SUV version leaves me a little sceptical. As a true behemoth, it plays the big SUV card shamelessly, bearing in mind that this kind of vehicle remains very popular with drivers who lacked recognition in their childhood. It offers unrivalled comfort and luxury in a blissfully quiet environment. However, buying this electric flagship means you’d better have a lot of money in the bank.
With a generous 3,21 metre long wheelbase, the EQE SUV offers impressive interior space to all passengers. Sharing the EQS EVA2 platform, it obviously plays the same cards as the saloon but the EQE goes one step up the ladder, offering 8 cm more headroom in the back than the saloon car. That’s definitely in keeping with today’s standards. The rear seat is adjustable in lenght over 13 cm, meaning you can enjoy a living space worthy of a king. Even when it is backmost, the boot capacity is still a huge 645 litres.
I like it
I’m not going to hide the fact that I was disappointed to find out that this EQS SUV 450+ didn’t have the hyperscreen which, admittedly, costs € 8,712. The old- school dashboard is far from the EQE and EQS futuristic ones that my passengers appreciated so much on these cars. That said, the two screens fitted here do the job perfectly. In front of the driver, the display offers a wide range of displays, from various dials to the full-size GPS map or… the less cluttered one we often prefer. The head-up display brings the GPS augmented reality and it takes some getting used to before embracing it. As for the rest, the driving position is perfect and you can rack up miles without fatigue or anxiety, since the range of this 450+ is an easy 450 km.
The EQS SUV we tested featured the Dynamic Select with 4 driving modes: Eco, Comfort, Sport and Individual. On the motorway, we selected the Eco mode to save some range but this slowed us up more than anything else, even though it made it easy to stick to the speed limit. The Sport mode enhance the powertrain responsiveness but it’s the Comfort mode that suits the car best and is perfect to get the most out of this Mercedes.
I don’t like it
Thanks to the paddles hidden behind the steering wheel, power regeneration can be enhanced. However, they can also help stopping power, as we found the brakes were a bit on the weak side for such a heavy car. Intelligent regeneration can also be selected : it then integrates data supplied by the cameras and various sensors and slows down the EQS SUV according to the bends radius or the car in front. Getting used to it was very quick and sometimes we even forgot to brake…
Why I buy it
Unlike some models from an American brand that are totally soulless and lacklustre, the Mercedes EQS SUV offers the proverbial Mercedes qualities in an up-to-the-minute package. All the passengers are pampered and enjoy remarkable space and luxury. The driver gets all the bells and whistles needed to rack up the miles. The range shouldn’t even worry them leaving home for a long journey. Boot space can be enlarged from 645 to 2,100 litres and this alone goes some way to justify this electric SUV huge size. As far as fuel consumption is concerned, we averaged 19.5 kWh/100 km driving it in a relaxed and cool way.
Why I don’t buy it
The Luxury Line trim is the EQS SUV entry model and it starts from € 119,427. That’s a hefty price tag, far away from any average family motoring budget. And we won’t even mention any extras…This turns the EQS into a new Mercedes dream car. Its future EQE SUV little brother should be priced much cheaper. Being massive and heavy (2,695 kg), this electric vehicle brakes lack bite, even though its handling eventually appears to be rather dynamic. The 360 bhp power and 568 Nm torque having surely a lot to do with that. (Translation: Dimitri Urbain – Pictures: Pierre Fontignies)