10 February 2021
10 February 2021
While some car companies seem to be dipping a trepidatious 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.
Described as an electric athlete in compact format, the newly launched EQA 250 is a small electric SUV that shares similar dimensions with the hugely popular GLA crossover and has been engineered with power, range and performance front of mind.
As the latest member of the Mercedes-Benz EQ electric vehicle family, the EQA 250 will join 2020 Wheels Car of the Year, the EQC, when it goes on sale in Australia later this year.
Providing the kind of surging yet silent acceleration that is a uniquely wonderful feature of electric vehicles, the EQA 250’s electric motor is paired with a 66.5kWh lithium-ion battery, which gifts it with an impressive 140kW of power and 375Nm of torque.
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).
Further assuaging range anxiety, the EQA 250 comes with an ingenious new system called Navigation with Electric Intelligence. By combining traditional map data with topographical information, weather forecasts and charging times, as well as the location of charging stations, this next-level navigation system can accurately calculate your fastest route and provide an accurate arrival time.
It’s also able to react dynamically over the course of your journey, changing its advice based on traffic information or even the way you’re driving (just like in a petrol vehicle, a heavy right foot is always going to use more juice).
Mercedes-Benz has maximised the range of the EQA 250 through the use of various technologies, including a sleek body shape designed to minimise drag and wind resistance. Another particularly brilliant feature is a heat pump that uses the heat created by the electric powertrain to keep the passenger compartment warm. This drastically reduces the draw on battery power that comes with a conventional heating system, thus increasing the range.
While the exterior bears subtle stylistic pointers to the EQA 250’s status as an electric vehicle, the interior is more explicit. The EV character comes through in back-lit trim elements – a first for Mercedes-Benz – and other exclusive details, like rose-gold-coloured decorative elements on the ventilation outlets, seats and the vehicle key.
“Progressive design and intuitive operation are two of the highlights of the EQA. With this car, for the first time we are offering our customers an all-electric Mercedes in the compact segment with an extensive range that ensures its viability in everyday use,” says Britta Seegar, a Mercedes-Benz board member responsible for marketing and sales.
“As such, the new EQA is an important vehicle along our path towards the electrification of all our vehicle segments.”
Clearly, with the EQA 250, Mercedes-Benz is setting the benchmark for compact electric SUVs, and sending the message that it is taking our electric future very seriously indeed.
By Stephen Corby