JA: The first EQS models have been in customer hands since the end of September 2021. How is the Mercedes‑EQ flagship being received by buyers?
Dr Oliver Röcker: The feedback we have received from the first EQS drivers is extremely positive. Customers rave about the ride comfort and the unique quietness of the interior. In addition, there is the large range. Not only have endurance tests by the trade press confirmed the large operating range with one battery charge, but customers are also achieving this range in everyday life.
The EQE SUV is the fourth model to use the new all-electric platform, following on from the EQS and EQE Saloons and the EQS SUV. What role does the EQE SUV play within this model family?
The EQE SUV is the multi-purpose variant of the EQE executive saloon, available just like this latter model with the key innovations of the EQS yet at the same time more dynamic than the EQS SUV. In other words, a family member with the best qualities and for every occasion.
What are the main highlights of the EQE SUV for you?
Our large Mercedes‑EQ models are so full of innovations that I find it difficult to pick out individual highlights. Even I, as a technician, am always thrilled by the futuristic architecture of the interior with the MBUX Hyperscreen. But, as is typical of Mercedes-Benz, we didn’t leave it at this visual “wow effect”. With the camera-based blocking logic of the front passenger display, we have added a truly customer-centric technical innovation to the imposing screen band. This allows the front passenger to watch TV during a journey, for example, without distracting the driver. And so I could list many more large and small examples of the innovations in this model family – from A for the assistance systems to Z for zero layer.
If you were to buy an EQE SUV, what equipment would definitely have to be on board?
Definitely the rear axle steering. I was involved in the development of this vehicle family and therefore knew on paper the effects that this speed-dependent steering of the rear wheels in the same or opposite direction has on the turning circle and vehicle stability. But when you experience in practice how manageable such an imposing vehicle becomes, it is extremely impressive. By the way, your question is still a bit “analogue”: with the large Mercedes‑EQ models, you don’t have to make a final commitment to every detail of the equipment at the time of purchase. Some vehicle functions can also be activated later via over-the-air technology (OTA).
Can you give us an example please?
Certainly. If the EQE is equipped with DIGITAL LIGHT, then the DIGITAL LIGHT with projection function can also be activated via OTA in the future. This allows auxiliary markings or warning symbols to be projected onto the road surface. Currently, this is already permitted throughout the European Union and the USA. Unfortunately, country restrictions still apply. We are currently in close contact with several approval authorities regarding other functions such as the pre-installation of the INTELLIGENT PARK PILOT, which will enable automated valet parking in accordance with SAE Level 4. This also illustrates how advanced the EQS and EQE are.
What’s next for Mercedes’ electric offensive?
Last summer we announced our strategic move from “Electric First” to “Electric Only”. In 2025, Mercedes‑Benz will introduce three new electric architectures. We are preparing to go fully electric before the end of the decade – wherever market conditions allow. So the current model range from the EQA to the EQS SUV is just the beginning of a new era.
EQE SUV at a glance
What is it?
The EQE SUV is the multi-purpose variant of the EQE executive saloon. EQE SUV is available with ‘much of the essential innovations of the EQS’ and at the same time is described as ‘more dynamic than the EQS SUV’. The EQE SUV is more compact than the EQE Saloon and, at 3030 millimetres, has a wheelbase that is nine centimetres shorter.
Up to 590 kilometres range
Mercedes says the modular drive concept enables the EQE SUV to offer a wide range of maximum total drive outputs from 215 to 300 kW. Depending on the vehicle equipment and configuration, the European vehicles can achieve WLTP ranges of up to 590 kilometres, Mercedes claims. In the EQE SUV, the lithium-ion battery consists of ten modules. In certain cases the innovative battery management software, which was developed in-house, can be updated over-the-air (OTA).
Extensive range of driving assistance systems
The current generation of Mercedes advanced driving assistance systems (ADAS) includes numerous functions that support the driver. The general standard equipment of the EQE SUV includes ATTENTION ASSIST, Active Brake Assist, Active Lane Keeping Assist, Parking Package with reversing camera and Speed Limit Assist. The status and activity of the systems are shown in a full-screen view in the assistance display in the driver’s display. Further options are available in the Assistance Package and also the Driving Assistance Plus Package.
Advanced suspension set-up
The chassis of the new EQE SUV comprises a four-link suspension at the front and an independent multi-link suspension at the rear. Due to the comparatively short wheelbase of 3030 millimetres and the corresponding suspension tuning, Mercedes says it feels particularly agile and manoeuvrable even with the basic set-up. The AIRMATIC air suspension with ADS+ continuously adjustable damping is available as an optional extra. To increase ground clearance, the vehicle level can be raised by up to 30 millimetres. In addition to the DYNAMIC SELECT programs of ECO, COMFORT, SPORT and INDIVIDUAL, the EQE SUV models with 4MATIC also boast the OFFROAD program for off-road driving. A rear axle steering system with a maximum steering angle of 10 degrees is available as an option.
The EQE SUV offers the possibility of activating additional vehicle functions via over-the-air technology (OTA) in a number of functional areas. This means that after purchase and having chosen the original new car configuration, some of the EQE SUV’s equipment can be individually customised. The OTA functions are available in the Mercedes me Store, and the range will be successively expanded.
MBUX Hyperscreen available
With adaptive software, the MBUX display and operating system makes personalised suggestions for numerous infotainment, comfort and vehicle functions. A highlight of the interior is the optional MBUX Hyperscreen. With the zero-layer design, the user does not have to scroll through submenus or give voice commands. Situational and contextual applications are offered at the top level in the field of view. With the MBUX Hyperscreen (optional extra), three displays merge into one another to create a screen band over 141 centimetres wide. The front passenger in the EQE SUV has the option of a 12.3-inch OLED display with its own user interface. The system uses an intelligent, camera-based blocking logic that recognises if the driver is looking toward the front passenger display. If this is the case, the system automatically dims the dynamic content for security reasons.
Heat pump as standard
The EQE SUV features a sophisticated thermal architecture with a heat pump as standard. With this system, the waste heat from the electric drive (inverter and electric motor) and also the high-voltage battery can be used to heat the interior. This, it is claimed, significantly reduces the draw on battery power for the heating system, thus increasing the range. The car is also enabled with pre-entry climate control. The THERMATIC automatic climate control system with two climate zones is fitted as standard, while the THERMOTRONIC with four zones is available as an option.
‘Serene breeze’ sound
‘Serene Breeze’ is the name of the new, fourth soundscape that makes its debut in the EQE SUV. It offers a relaxed and natural sound. With the holistic sound staging, the paradigm shift from combustion engine to electric car becomes audible for the occupants in the Mercedes-EQ models. A variety of soundscapes allows for an individual acoustic set-up. An optional interior driving sound is available. This adjusts adaptively to the driving style.
Variable charging rates
Since June 2022, Mercedes me Charge has been offering three new charging tariffs in Europe that are tailored to individual driving performance. Mercedes me Charge S for occasional chargers, Mercedes me Charge M for normal chargers and Mercedes me Charge L for frequent chargers. With the introduction of the new, transparent tariff system, customers have access in part to fixed prices that apply regardless of the operator. With the Plug & Charge function, the EQE SUV can also be conveniently charged.
Other high-tech features
DIGITAL LIGHT headlamp technology (special equipment) makes innovative functions possible, such as the projection of auxiliary markings or warning symbols onto the road. Another equipment highlight is ENERGIZING AIR CONTROL Plus. A HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Air) filter cleans the incoming outside air at its very high filtration level. ENERGIZING COMFORT links together various comfort systems in the vehicle. The individual ENERGIZING COMFORT programmes enable a special feel-good programme depending on the mood or needs of the customer. This enhances physical comfort and performance while driving and during a break, Mercedes says.