Mercedes-Benz has added the all-electric EQA compact SUV to its Australian line-up, joining the larger EQS which was introduced in late 2019.
Previewed by the German carmaker in late 2020, the newest member of the EQ family is one of six more electric vehicles promised by 2022.
The EQA will be launched globally later in 2021 and is already available for order in Europe. A spokesperson for Mercedes-Benz Australia told The Driven to expect a local launch in mid-2021.
“While some car companies seem to be dipping a trepidatious (sic) toe into the all-electric future, others, like Mercedes-Benz, are fully charged and coming to market with options that really will tempt the electric vehicle curious,” the company says on its page devoted to the EQA.
Specifications for the EQS include a 66.5kWh battery that Mercedes-Benz says will deliver 140kW power and 375Nm torque.
It is disappointing to see Mercedes-Benz touting a promised 486km driving range based on the highly optimistic NEDC cycle as an answer to “range anxiety”, given all that we know about the outdated NEDC rating system is that it is better known as “not even damn close” . It also ignores the fact that for most drivers the average daily driving distance is about 40 kilometres:
“Of course, the biggest concern that most buyers have about EVs is not driving joy but driving range and the EQA 250 offers plenty of reassurance, boasting an impressive range of 486km between charges according to the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC),” it says.
Unlike the all-wheel-drive EQC, the EQA is built on the MFA (modular front architecture) platform and has the advantage of a lighter curb weight and more compact body (it’s about 30cm shorter than the EQC).
What this means for efficiency is the EQA uses far less energy to drive than the 19.7kWh/100km larger EQC: about 20% less, in fact, at 15.7kWh/100km.
That translates into around 380km on a single charge – and it will be able to recharge from 10 to 80 per cent in 30 minutes at a top charging rate of 100kW at a DC fast charger. Using an 11kW wall charger, it can add an extra 120km of driving range per hour of charging.
Mercedes-Benz says a sleeker body shape contributes to this, as well as the inclusion of a heat pump which draws heat from the electric drivetrain for passenger comfort without reducing range significantly.
There is no official pricing for the EQA in Australia as yet but expect it to land in the $75,000-80,000 mark before on-road costs.
This article has been updated with information about an Australian EQA launch.
Bridie Schmidt is lead reporter for The Driven, sister site of Renew Economy. She has been writing about electric vehicles since 2018, and has a keen interest in the role that zero-emissions transport has to play in sustainability. She has participated in podcasts such as Download This Show with Marc Fennell and Shirtloads of Science with Karl Kruszelnicki and is co-organiser of the Northern Rivers Electric Vehicle Forum. Bridie also owns a Tesla Model 3 and has it available for hire on evee.com.au.