Offering a standard cabin designed to carry up to 7 people, the Mercedes EQB shows from the start its main target: families. It is likely that this novelty will also attract taxis and VTC, as well as companies in which this electric SUV can endorse the status of executive vehicle. How does this machine behave in the city, on roads and highways?
The tested model
With the same width of 1.83 m that facilitates parking, the Mercedes EQB is 22 cm longer than his trendy little brother EQA : 4.68 m, against 4.46 m. It also tops it off at 5 cm, rising to 1.67 m. Same difference with the Tesla Model Y to which it is comparable and which sits on a superior footprint of 4.75 x 1.92 m.
We had the 350 4Matic version of the EQB available, available in France only in the AMG Line trim. On its website, Mercedes specifies that it is the best-selling model, ahead of the 250 available in Progressive Line, Business Line and AMG Line.
Rose gold paint is charged as an option at 800 euros. This is also the case for the other metallic presentations: Digital White, Cosmos Black, Denim Blue, Iridium Silver, Mountain Grey. Only black is available at no extra charge. For 250 euros, you can opt for polar white. The color chart also offers a Manufaktur selection: metallic patagonia red (+€1,150) and magno mountain gray (+€2,250).
4 driving wheels
Our test model had black body parts, tinted rear windows and 18-inch alloy wheels included in the Sport Black package (+250 euros). 4Matic is at Mercedes synonymous with permanent four-wheel drive », with an automatic dosage of power for each one of the wheels according to the conditions of the terrain.
In this electric SUV, this architecture is served by an induction motor at the front and a synchronous device with permanent magnets to drive the rear axle. It offers a cumulative power of 215 kW (292 hp), for a nominal torque of 520 Nm. The motor is powered by a lithium-ion battery with a useful energy capacity of 66.5 kWh.
Let’s just say it right away: there’s no frunk up front, unlike the Tesla Model Y, which has a 117-litre cargo hold under the hood. The electric opening tailgate (Premium pack at 1,100 euros) reveals in the German a trunk with a fairly low threshold and well cleared at the top. The manufacturer gives a volume of 465 liters, or 1,620 liters with the rear seat backs folded down.
It is much better than with the Mercedes EQA: 340/1,320 l. On the other hand, if we compare it with the space of 854/2041 l, unmatched, in the American, it is something else. Please note that depending on the configuration, the boot volume may be more or less reduced. Already because the rear seats can slide to provide extra comfort to passengers. But also because a third section can be deployed to embark up to 7 occupants.
In this case, don’t plan to do your weekly shopping for all these little people. Especially since this version is deprived of the possibility of towing a trailer. Additional luggage can only be carried on board by installing a roof box.
With a 10 cm longer wheelbase than the EQA, the Mercedes EQB offers more space for passengers seated in the rear. The 3 folders can be configured individually. However, the middle seat is barely usable, if only because of the hardness that is perceived in the rear due to the folding armrest and the lack of width to carry 3 people.
The fairly soft seats are a bit short and low. On the other hand, headroom is generous. The panoramic glass panel that opens (+1,450 euros, requires the Premium package) and the large windows provide a beautiful light on board. Access to the last row is not easy. It is facilitated by the large doors. But not because of the obligation to walk over a folded file while lowering your head.
It is perhaps the driver who will appreciate this situation the most, if he has decided to enrich a collection of onomatopoeias, interjections and profanities that the occupants could pronounce when settling in the transformed trunk. Let’s start with the personal production of Maxime Fontanier: ” Skip ! Crack! Mouourp! » (I am not sure about the Mouourp: it may be Ouaourp. I hesitate to propose a poll on the subject at the end of the article).
Once wedged into the alcove of the still-comfortable booster seats, people up to 1.65m tall will be able to grab a drink and take advantage of its integrated cup holders, or appreciate the presence of USB-C sockets.
The driver’s point of view
Sitting in front of the steering wheel with specific stitching for the AMG Line trim, the driver sitting high enough will benefit from a very neat presentation all around. Already at the level of the armchairs with numerous electrical adjustments, with position memory, heating, and from which it is possible to extend the seat. ” The quality of the materials is impeccable. », assures our tester.
The presence of brushed aluminum frames and inserts illuminates the dashboard during the day. At night, color-changing ambient LEDs take care of this.
There are plenty of storage spaces: inductively charged cup holder shelf for smartphones, center armrest, glove box, door bins, etc.
The steering wheel spokes support numerous buttons, some of which can even act on the data display of the 2 digital screens. Instead of the usual gear lever, the Touch Control touch panel (MBUX Innovations Pack for 1,400 euros) is used in particular to intervene in ambient lighting and the multimedia system, compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto for 400 euros.
It is even capable, according to Mercedes, of recognizing your handwriting. Her presence prevents leaving fingerprints on the right slab. A row of sensitive keys is dedicated to the configuration of the heating, air conditioning and ventilation device.
With the smartphone application, it is possible to give commands (set a temperature on board before leaving, update the software system, open/close the roof and windows, transfer the digital key, etc.) or obtain various information (status of charging, locking, tire pressure, geolocation, etc.).
To facilitate reversing, it is possible to modify the views transmitted by the cameras on the right screen thanks to a 500-euro parking pack. On a chaotic dirt road, unmanned suspension play won’t keep occupants from feeling a bit shaken and subject to some tremors. The speed bumps, on the other hand, are correctly filtered.
The fat Pirelli 235/55 R18 tires with high sidewalls add their touch of comfort. ” It’s not a great off-roader, but it’s a good off-roader: it’s very practical sums up Maxime Fontanier. The accelerator and brake pedals are very progressive, avoiding jerks and facilitating circulation in an urban environment.
Adjustable thanks to 2 paddles on the steering wheel, regenerative braking contributes to this impression. However, it does not allow the vehicle to come to a complete stop. Its D Auto mode adapts its power according to traffic and the navigation system. When it comes to making a U-turn in the city, the user of this electric SUV probably won’t be thrilled with a turning radius of 11.7m, which isn’t really exceptional.
On winding roads
There are four driving modes available in the Mercedes EQB: Comfort, Eco, Individual and Sport. It is the latter that we have selected to tickle the machine a bit on a little winding road. What a feeling of powerful acceleration, with a 0-100 km / h announced in 6.2 s by the manufacturer.
A succession of curves will quickly temper our enthusiasm. The vehicle is not really dynamic, greatly delayed compared to models like the Volvo XC40 recharge, Ford Mustang Mach-E and Tesla Model Y. The front axle seems heavy, the body sways, partly due to a total weight of 2175 kg. Or a quintal more than the not particularly light EQA.
The distribution of motor skills is less efficient. ” Like there’s a gap between the front and the back », translates our tester. Lacking bite, the brakes are no more convincing. In short, the JCA yearns to be treated more delicately.
« It’s probably one of the most enjoyable vehicles to drive at slow speeds in the city, but it’s probably the least enjoyable to drive on winding roads at full speed. says the man in the cap.
short road trip
Foot on the ground when leaving a toll, and 2 drawbacks: the impression of skating on dry ground, and the speed limit indicator that stays at 70 km/h when we have been hooked on a long stretch at 130 for a while. tip, you will not exceed 160 km/h with the Mercedes EQB. A bit of a squeeze to take advantage of German motorways!
Enriched with a dedicated package costing 1,450 euros, the copy in our hands benefited from all the driving aids, some of which turned out to be a bit too sensitive.
Rolling noise is fairly well contained. Better than the passage of air in some points of the bodywork, specifically at the height of the mirrors.
Consumption, autonomy and load
With cruise control set at 130 km/h, under an outside temperature of 17° C, and in calm weather, we note a consumption of 24.2 kWh/100 km. Enough to cover a little more than 260 km. In mixed use, count about 19 kWh/100 km, or almost 350 km if you want to flirt with the blackout.
For comparison, the Mercedes configurator gives for the EQB equipped like the one in our test, a WLTP combined cycle range of 409 km.
Going through a fast charging station, we got a power of 78 kW at best. To compare with the maximum of 100 kW announced by the manufacturer. This electric SUV also has an 11 kW charger to operate the terminals with alternating current.
At the time of this writing, the Mercedes website shows the EQB 350 4Matic AMG Line from 64,650 euros. Adding the 7,750 euros of options present in the sample tested, the check to be signed amounts to 72,400 euros. Or 3,450 euros more than an EQA 350.
With lower performance, there is a more affordable version of the EQB 2250, which starts at 54,700 euros in the basic Progressive Line finish. If the energy capacity of the battery is identical, the power drops to 140 kW (190 hp) with one motor less. These prices do not find their justification in the performance/consumption ratio, but in the manufacturing quality of the vehicles.
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