Mercedes Vision EQXX Concept Debuts With 621-Mile Range

Mercedes-Benz Vision EQXX Concept Is a Sleek Sedan with 620-Mile Range
Mercedes-Benz Vision EQXX Concept Is a Sleek Sedan with 620-Mile Range

Mercedes’ image of the future is both futuristic and pleasingly traditional. This sleek luxury automobile serves as a model for the brand’s future electric vehicles.

  • Range is the big number on the Mercedes-Benz Vision EQXX, revealed today as part of the annual CES technology show and claimed to be “the most efficient Mercedes-Benz ever.”
  • The production-viable, although not production-intended, electric sedan puts out only 201 horsepower but is claimed to deliver 620 miles on a charge. Theoretically, of course.
  • The single-motor, most likely rear-wheel-drive EQXX boasts virtuous features such as vegan leather, solar panels, recycled-plastic trim—and an extremely slick 0.17 drag coefficient.

With the Vision EQXX, Mercedes is reversing the trend of automakers showing futuristic EV concepts that emphasis promises of performance over range. The small four-door was presented at the CES technology exhibition in Las Vegas, albeit due to COVID concerns, the manufacturer only took part virtually. Although the estimated power output is only 201 horsepower, the business claims that the automobile has been engineered to provide more than 620 miles (1000 kilometres) of real-world driving on a single charge. However, that enormous promise has the squishiness of a concept car, as it isn’t comparable to the range of any other EV. It’s not a number from the European WLTP test cycle, nor is it a number from the United States. EPA range figure, but instead what Mercedes describes as the result of “digital simulations based in real-life traffic conditions.” Whether it might beat the Lucid Air Dream’s impressive 520-mile EPA rating is anyone’s guess.

The EQXX appears to be production-ready—it even has door mirrors, which are becoming increasingly rare in futuristic concepts—but it appears to be hinting at next-generation advancements rather than making a firm commitment. The company claims that this concept will serve as a “technical roadmap for series production.”

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Mercedes has only provided a few technical specifications, but the EQXX is clearly short and sleek by Mercedes’ standards. There’s no word on overall length, but a 110.0-inch wheelbase suggests it’ll be a touch longer than the A-class sedan, which has 107.4 inches between axles and a shorter rear overhang. We don’t have a width figure, but a head-on image shows that the EQXX is significantly thinner than a typical Mercedes, and that the rear track is two inches narrower than the front, with a stated drag coefficient of 0.17 thanks to the ultra-slippery design.

Much of the EQXX’s sleek form has been dictated by aerodynamic considerations, including the long, shallow angle of the falling roofline and the retro droop of the rear fenders, as well as the way the bodywork tucks in beneath the full-width lighting element at the back above an active, deployable diffuser that motors out at speed. The shape of the trunklid shows that the Mercedes vision of the future is a sedan rather than a hatchback or SUV, both of which are pleasingly retro.

The car’s wind-cheating form contributes significantly to Mercedes’ stated powertrain efficiency, with the official release claiming that it can drive six miles on just 1.0 kWh of electrical energy, which is similar to a 202 mpg gasoline car (which is close to the efficiency that Mercedes describes as “the golden figure of one litre per 100 kilometers”). The fact that Mercedes claims the EQXX’s drivetrain is 95 percent efficient complicates the comparison. That means that just 5% of the energy stored in the battery pack makes it to the road.

Even the most fuel-efficient gasoline engines can’t achieve more than 35% efficiency. This is why the EQXX can achieve such a high range without a large battery pack. According to Mercedes, the EQXX has slightly less than 100 kWh of usable capacity, which is roughly equivalent to three gallons of ordinary unleaded gas, but the car is able to convert significantly more of this into movement. The business is especially pleased with the underfloor battery’s tiny size and light weight, which is 50 percent smaller and 30 percent lighter than the EQS’s 107.8-kWh pack.

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A 900-Volt Battery Pack

The pack was created in collaboration with AMG’s High Performance Powertrains branch in the United Kingdom, which produces Mercedes F1 engines as well as the nearly as exotic powertrain for the long-awaited (but soon-to-be-released) AMG One. This runs at a high 900 volts and uses high silicon anodes, which are capable of holding more energy than lesser cells, and has a compact design that allows electronic control gear to be housed in the same chassis. The car’s claimed overall mass of 3858 pounds is only slightly higher than that of a standard-range Tesla Model 3. The battery’s total weight of 1091 pounds is impressively light given the pack’s capacity, with the car’s claimed overall mass of 1091 pounds being impressively light given the pack’s capacity.

Surprisingly, there is no official information on the other side of the powertrain, other than apparent confirmation that the EQXX is powered by a single motor and drives the back wheels. The design does have an underfloor cooling plate for aerodynamic efficiency, active air flaps to channel cooling air, and a heat pump to help heat the cabin, according to Mercedes. It also has solar panels, albeit the stated potential to add up to 15 miles of range on a sunny day is based on using the energy generated to power the car’s blower fan, lighting, electronics, and other ancillaries rather than charging the high-voltage battery directly.

The Now Inevitable Wide Infotainment Screen

The cabin of the EQXX is dominated by what appears to be the inevitable conclusion of modern UI design—a full-width LED screen that runs the length of the dashboard, uninterrupted by vertical seams. This monitor is 47.5 inches wide and has an 8K resolution with a 7680-by-660-pixel resolution that will demand a lot of graphical horsepower to run. In the photos, it appears to be crisp. The official press release also extols the virtues of “The ethereal guide is a star-cloud avatar reminiscent of our namesake, Mercedes Jellinek. She transforms into different shapes in response to the driver’s needs and looks after the passengers, turning the voyage into a luxurious experience.” However, we have no notion what that signifies.

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On the inside, nearly all of the sustainability boxes have been checked. For example, there are two varieties of vegan leather: one generated from mushroom root structure and the other from cactus fibres in a “bio-based polyurethane matrix.” Bamboo carpets are available, as well as trim created from recycled plastics woven into a dazzling fabric. The outside bodywork is constructed of “low-CO2 steel manufactured from scrap,” with carbon fibre and glass-reinforced plastics used for the doors.

The EQXX’s efficient minimalism is evocative of another futuristic German prototype: Volkswagen’s similarly slick XL1 diesel plug-in hybrid, which was only produced in Europe in 2013. The Mercedes is more practical because it has four seats and four doors, and it weights more than twice as much, yet the front end design is startlingly comparable. It will be fascinating to watch how much of the EQXX’s ideas finds its way into future production models.


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