The best car in the world has always been the S-Class from Mercedes-Benz: Equipped with the latest technology, luxurious and powerful, the Stuttgart flagship has always been the global benchmark for the top vehicle category. But now there is competition from in-house. As a top product for the supposedly electric future, Daimler did not electrify the S-Class, but developed a completely independent model: the EQS. We drove it.
From Jens Meiners
The independence of this electric luxury sedan manifests itself in the look. With its relatively short front end, the curved passenger cell and the hatchback that tapers off in a rump, the new model relies on different, modern proportions - and in contrast to most other e-cars in the upper price range, uses the potential of an exclusively electric platform unreservedly. In contrast to the S-Class, which is built in three lengths, the EQS is only available with one wheelbase. But it already offers so much space in the interior that an even longer variant is superfluous.
Cd value of 0,20 is a world record
There is ample space at the front and rear, and behind the rear seats there is a 610-liter luggage compartment that can be accessed via a large tailgate and increases to 1770 liters when the rear seat is folded down. The design language is reduced and fits perfectly with the new approach of the EQS. And it works: the drag coefficient of 0,20 is still below that of the Audi e-tron GT and thus at a world record level. However, it is only achieved in the entry-level model with an AMG package, a small plastic attachment on the rear wheel arch and special rims.
The cool splendor of the interior
The interior is also futuristic, but at the same time unusually opulent. There are two of them
Different dashboards: The basic variant has large, separate screens, similar to the S-Class, and there is a decorative surface in front of the co-pilot. For a surcharge, there is a fully glazed cockpit called Hyperscreen, in which three large screens are hidden behind glass. The ambient lighting communicates with the driver by color, the supercooled splendor of this interior is second to none.
In the entry-level model EQS 450, a synchronous machine provides propulsion, which transmits 245 kW (333 hp) to the rear axle via a single-stage transmission. The sprint from 0 to 100 km / h takes 6,1 seconds, at 210 km / h it is limited. The EQS moves with great lightness. When the driver on the automatic
Without recuperation and let the car roll, you can feel how low the driving resistance is. This corresponds to an excellent consumption of 15,8 kWh in the WLTP cycle, which corresponds to a range of up to 780 WLTP kilometers. Even in real operation, 500 to 600 kilometers can easily be reached. Above this is the twin-engine EQS 580 with all-wheel drive, which has an output of 385 kW (523 hp) and completes the standard sprint in just 4,3 seconds. His optimistic WLTP range is 676 kilometers.
Long-haul rather in the lorry lane
This means that the fear of range that is part of the e-car experience is theoretically a thing of the past - but only if fast charging options are also available. Theoretically, the DC charging power is up to 200 kW. However, if there is no corresponding column, the journey in the EQS is interrupted for a long time with an empty battery. The range, which is impressive on paper, is put into perspective when you consider that business trips involve an outward journey
Over a few hundred kilometers, the return trip of the same length will inevitably follow. And so you will see the EQS in long-haul operation - just like the competing product from America - more in the truck lane than in the rearview mirror of a rapidly moving turbo diesel. The drive has to move an impressive 2,5 weight even in the entry-level model - and this is only thanks to an elaborate material concept. With a pure steel construction, so it is said behind closed doors, the EQS would have exceeded the three-tonne mark by far when empty.
From 2022 automated driving on level 3
In city traffic, the EQS looks extremely handy, not least thanks to the all-wheel steering with a 4,5 degree steering angle, which can optionally be increased to 10 degrees. This reduces the turning circle - an old Mercedes virtue - to a full 10,9 meters. With a forced driving style, the EQS threatens to understeer, the tendency to roll cannot be completely suppressed. But the comfort is at the highest level. The suspension also parries rough bumps and acoustically the sedan appears almost completely decoupled.
The EQS is equipped with a wide range of assistance systems that continue on the path to autonomous driving. From 2022, the car should be able to drive autonomously on highways up to 60 km / h in level 3 - and thus fulfill a promise that the competition from Ingolstadt, for example, has not yet kept. However, this impressive vision did not prevent the system from applying the brakes on a fast corner because it considered a sports car parked on the side of the road to be an obstacle.
The approach of an independent electric series is attractive and certainly superior to the manufacturers who subsequently electrify their conventional cars. But the basic disadvantages of the electric car remain: Despite the impressive range, the long haul is subject to uncertainty, and the fact that the additional electricity required for e-cars mainly comes from dirty sources, even Daimler cannot change that.
And so, from our point of view, the S-Class remains the best car in the world. While the EQS is the best car in a politically desirable parallel world, of which it is still far from clear what it will ultimately look like. Incidentally, the prices have not yet been determined, but will be at the level of a comparable S-Class.
Technical data Mercedes-Benz EQS 450 + Length x width x height (m): 5,22 x 1,93 x 1,51 Wheelbase (m): 3,21 Motor: Permanent magnet synchronous motor Output: 245 kW / 333 PS Max. Torque: 586 Nm, battery: high-voltage lithium-ion battery, top speed: 210 km / h, acceleration from 0 to 100 km / h: 6,2 seconds, electrical range: 780 km, WLTP average consumption: 15,8 kWh / 100 km, efficiency class: A +, CO2 emissions: 0 g / km (local) Empty weight / payload: min. 2480 kg / max. 545 kg, trunk volume: 610–1770 liters, max. Trailer load: 750 kg, turning circle: 11,9 (optional: 10,9 ) m, drag coefficient: 0,20, base price: not yet known