Mercedes-Benz has taken the wraps off a new four-door, all-electric concept, dubbed the Vision EQS, at the ongoing Frankfurt motor show. It provides a foretaste of what the carmaker claims will be its most advanced production model when it sees its market debut in 2021. The luxury sedan is slated to be launched as a direct rival to the next-generation pure-electric Jaguar XJ, as well as the Tesla Model S and Audi e-tron GT.
The EQS is set to act as a high-tech figurehead for an extended range of models from Mercedes-Benz’s newly created EQ electric car sub-brand. It follows the EQC, EQA and EQB as Mercedes-Benz’s fourth all-electric model, but is the first to feature a dedicated steel, aluminium and carbon-fibre platform, dubbed MEA (Modular Electric Architecture) internally. The EQS also forms the basis of an even more luxurious Maybach model that is intended to take on an upcoming EV being developed by Rolls-Royce.
Mercedes-Benz chairman Ola Källenius said, “By 2022, we will have launched a total of more than 10 purely electrically driven vehicles. Over and above this, we shall electrify the entire Mercedes-Benz portfolio and thus offer our customers at least one electrified alternative in every Mercedes-Benz model series – over 50 in all.”
Powered by two electric motors spread across both axles for four-wheel drive, the Vision EQS has a combined output of around 477hp and 759Nm of torque. This is sufficient to allow the car to accelerate from standstill to 100kph in a claimed 4.5sec and reach a top speed of more than 200kph.
The MEA platform is said to be capable of containing a battery pack of up to 100kWh in size. The lithium-ion battery from Mercedes-Benz's sibling company, Accumotive, is claimed to provide the sedan with a range of over 700km, which is 254km more than the EQC. Mercedes-Benz has developed the EQS to support 350kW charging and claims that the battery can be charged to 80 percent in just 20min.
The new electric platform enables the Vision EQS to have different proportions from a traditional sedan’s – the bonnet is shorter, the windscreen is set well forward, and the rear end is quite low by today’s standards. The roofline, meanwhile, is similar in shape to that gracing the third-generation CLS.
With the battery housed completely within the floorpan of the MEA platform, it is said to have an exceptionally low centre of gravity, as well as advanced air suspension, featuring active body control and anti-lean to boost the car’s dynamic appeal.
Stylistically, the Vision EQS follows the lead of the EQC with an exterior that has fuller forms and smoother surfacing than those of current combustion-engined models. To inject it with some extra visual pizzazz, the new concept receives a two-tone paint scheme as well as an LED light band along the shoulder of each side.
In place of a traditional chrome grille, the EQS, receives a seamless black panel grille, complete with an illuminated three-pointed star emblem, containing more than 188 individual LEDs.
Flanking the black panel grille are Mercedes-Benz’s Digital Light headlights – each featuring two holographic lens modules that enable it to project signals onto the road to improve safety for pedestrians.
The rear end of the car is dominated by a further light band made up of 229 individual illuminated three-pointed stars. All up, the new Mercedes-Benz concept has some 940 individual LEDs.
The EQS also features a newly styled cabin inspired by luxury yachts. The flowing forms of the dashboard are said to mirror the look already chosen for the production version of the new luxury sedan. Also on board is a future iteration of the firm’s latest MBUX operating system, which works in combination with a large digital panel housing the instruments and infotainment functions.
Apart from revealing the design ideas set to be incorporated in its production sibling, the concept’s interior also showcases several recyclable materials being considered for use in future Mercedes-Benz models. These include composite materials made from recycled PET bottles and plastic ocean waste, as well as a faux-leather material that is claimed to closely resemble the properties of nappa leather.
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