Mercedes-Benz EQS redefines luxury sedans
With roots that stretch back to the stately limousines of the 1950s, the Mercedes-Benz S-Class is more than a car — it's practically a cathedral of automotive tradition. But now Mercedes-Benz is taking a bold step and changing almost everything with the new, all-electric EQS sedan, and it's the best S-Class they've ever made.
The S-Class has always been Mercedes' premier luxury car. With the smaller E-Class, the idea is that the owner is the driver. In the S-Class, it's expected that many of the owners will ride in the back seat while an employee does the driving. However, the EQS is a car that everyone will want to drive. It's fast, smooth as a flying carpet, and carries the aplomb that you expect from a big Benz.
The shift to electric vehicles that will happen over the next 10 years is the biggest change ever to happen in the automotive industry. It's a chance to re-imagine the automobile, and that's what Mercedes has done with the EQS. Mercedes has crafted the interior and driver cockpit to be supremely comfortable, and to keep the driver fresh with little features like the ability to automatically alter the driver's position very slightly every few minutes, to avoid stiffening muscles.
As an electric, the EQS is already quiet, and Mercedes has a lot of experience making the S-Class cabin serene. The combination of an electric S-Class takes peace and quiet in the cabin to new levels. That's matched by the Burmester sound system, which delivers near-perfect sound replication. It's better than your home stereo, for sure. Then the expansive glass dashboard encompasses several different screens, giving you plenty of configurable map or control screen space. The front seat passenger even gets their own screen.
The EQS is fast, but it's not ludicrous. The Mercedes-Benz engineers didn't go for bragging rights on 0-60 time or anything like that. They went for range, which is the top concern of most EV buyers. The EQS is only out-ranged by some Tesla and Lucid models. With 350 miles between charges, and the ability to use DC Fast Chargers for a recharge in just a few hours, the EQS puts range anxiety to rest.
It's odd to use the term, but the EQS is also versatile and useful. Instead of a trunk lid, the whole back end opens up for a very generous cargo area. Fold the rear seats down and you've got enough space to go car camping, if one did that kind of thing in an S-Class.
So, let's hit the bottom line: this car is expensive. Mercedes-Benz has stated their intention to focus on the luxury end of their product line, and most automakers start their EV portfolios at the top end, so this should come as no surprise. Plus, the S-Class is Mercedes-Benz' top luxury model. So the EQS starts above $100,000 and then options can put the price of an economy car on top of that.
If you can't afford the EQS, don't despair, you're hardly alone. The takeaway is, this is the technology that's coming to an affordable model sooner rather than later. In the meantime, if you get the chance to take a look at the EQS, it's worth your time to see what's possible in electric luxury cars.
2022 Mercedes-Benz EQS 450+
Base price: $102,310
Price as tested: $125,730
Type: Full size sedan
Engine: Electric motor (329 hp, 419 lbs-ft)
Transmission: Direct drive
Estimated range: 350 miles
Overall length: 207.3 inches
Curb weight: 5,597 pounds
Final assembly: Sindelfingen, Germany
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