At this point in time the king of electric luxurious electric cars is the Mercedes-Benz EQS. The quirky looking flagship EQ has a presence that isn’t a clone of the S Class but rather a unique take on a hatchback theme… I suppose shooting break/brake (either is correct) or lift-back might describe the body shape better.
Its a large imposing machine (5.216m long) that is effortless to drive and with four wheel steering is remarkable dynamic and manoeuvrable. After a few days in the car I was really impressed with how easy the big car is to use day to day in urban and rural settings. The cabin is vast and very comfortable and usually a car this size would be a hassle in traffic and when parking but the EQS was so simple to place on the road it just confirmed what I already knew about the EQ division in Mercedes – they know their stuff. I’ve spent a quite a bit of time with the brilliant Mercedes’ engineers behind EQ and with the EQS and EQE they have delivered on producing electric cars that convention S Class and E Class drivers will find are easy to migrate too.
Outside the EQS is distinctive, not as easy a quick ‘like’ as an S Class but this car represents a generational step and I’ve always found cars near the end of their life cycle seem to look their best and are easy to appreciate. With the EQS change is good and the shape, especially at the rear is something you warm too.
Inside, if you opt for the (expensive €12,213) additional ‘Hyperscreen’ display screen for your passenger the dash represents peak screen (56-inch) as it is made up of three huge digital displays that if you turn up their brightness will give you a tan (I made that bit up!). The whole too much screen debate, based on visual distraction arguments is one for another day but the displays are great and the navigation mapping will have passengers saying “wow” out loud. Personally I love that I can fit my favourite Bass guitar in the boot without have to lower a seats, usually something I can only do in large estate cars.
The driving experience is… look do you need me to say anything here?! It is a luxury EV so it delivers seamless power regardless of the driving mode chosen. It has 333hp and 565nm of torque. Top speed is an autobahn friendly 210km/h although the thought of driving above 100km/h makes most EV owners break out in a rash! 0-100km/h takes about 6.2 seconds with instant pulling power at any speed the true appeal. Regenerative braking features and you can set the amount of brake force delivered when you lift off the throttle. The brake pedal requires more force than I’d like, and could have more initial bite. The steering in my €168,001 test car is fantastic (EQS starts from €129,965). The driving aids deliver excellent Level-2 autonomous driving and on long motorway runs or in poor conditions the car can really take good car of you.
The EV part of things is impressive as the EQS has more battery capacity than most (111kWh), roughly twice the battery capacity of your average EV. This means the big car has enough range for intercity work without needing to charge in an exotic ‘services’ off a bland motorway! A maximum driving range from a full battery of 717km is quoted, so 500+km is doable. I didn’t need to charge each night! At a rapid charger (Ionity) the EQS can charge very quickly at up to 200kW. This is bliss as it mean less time plugged in charging, which I find is always a time when you curse electricity and wish you still had a diesel.
If you need a reason not to buy one, the soft pillow head restraint covers on our car are great for everyone to relax into – except for the driver who is relaxed enough as it is. I took mine off (Velcro fastener) as it caressed my head too frequently! Surprisingly when we asked “Hey Mercedes does our car have a heated steering wheel?” The answer was no! An odd omission when you consider one of our extras, the Premium plus pack costs €17,776.
In essence, you just need to be able to afford an EQS and you’ll have little or no complaints with the whole EV experience… it is that good.