They have done it again! The übermeisters of automobility have roared and eardrums are ringing. The forest is awry, for a new apex predator has emerged from the cauldrons of Stuttgart. It moves in silence, cutting through the air as if your physics teacher said “assume air resistance is negligible”. It hunts in silence, gobbling up kilometres of tarmac with an electrified voracity so deadly, by the time you hear it, its already too late. If the automotive world is a dog park, Mercedes have casually strolled in…. fashionably late……………………………………………………………………………..
With A CYBORG DIRE WOLF!
Ladies and Gentlemen, I present to you (or you to, depending on how you’re looking at it) the all New, Mercedes Benz E…Q…S!!
But first, some background. When the EQC Cross Over came out, and I saw the tech specs, I wasn’t impressed, in fact, I was confused. I was asking myself questions like; whats wrong at MB? Why are they doing like “swegbe”? Abi, did they cut their salaries? Even if you’re depressed because of lockdown, this no be am. If I had their engineering chief’s phone number, the conversation would have gone something like this:
Me: chairman, how you dey? Hope no problem?
MB: we’re alright.
Me: are you sure? When last did you eat?
Me: not gala and coke o. I mean proper currywurst, sauerkraut and schnitzel.
MB: Well, ehmmmm…we are ok shaaaa.
Me: oh really, then why are you acting like you’re low on glucose?
MB: What do you mean?
Me: what happened with that crossover you people just released?
MB: Oh, yes. Actually…thats what they said we should do.
Me: They? Who is “they”? Please, show “they” to me. (Read this again but in your mother tongue for special effects)
MB: you know now
Me: Ehennnnnn?! Na the accountants shey?! Don’t worry. Go and tell “they” that I’m sending my boys. That thing that happened to McLaren’s accountants go soon happen to them. (For those who don’t know, check out my article about the McLaren F1).
In summary, that EQC was painfully underwhelming. The 3 pointed star stands for thoroughness, ingenuity and exactitude. The EQC was confused, compromised and complacent. It’s what happens when “they” want a bestseller but “they” don’t want to spend bestseller money. SUV and Electric are hot categories in autosales, so it should have been a no-brainer. However the way they went about it was rather “un-benz-ly”. Karl, Wilhelm and Gotlieb would have been rolling in their graves when that car was being hastily put together and given the esteemed star. So what was the main offense: improper platform recycling; using a structure to accomplish what it was neither optimised nor engineered for. Others could do this and get away with it but not Merc. We won’t let them, because we know that they know better. And they know we know.
How do I know? Because after that weak left jab missed, they landed a well placed right hook and now there are teeth all over the ring. The EQS is such a fantastic car, you begin to wonder maybe they made the other one sketchy on purpose.
In Mercedes lingo, wherever you see the letter “S”, it means top of the line. That implies that that car is their supreme statement on the matter. Over the years several cars have carried the “S” mandate, either in name or in spirit. My personal favourite is the W221 (2006-2013) S-Class. That was the period that my eyes had begun to open. That car looked so stately. At the time, every serious Head of State had at least one and those who didn’t were secretly jealous and openly rebellious and chose another brand. If you wanted to be taken seriously, you rode in an S-Class. In fact, if I catch a windfall now, I’m going to get a 2013 S550 and give Proforce to help me “cook” it.
About a week ago a new “S” was unveiled and impressive does not begin to start to describe the car. The EQS is Mercedes’ statement on what matured, luxury electro-motion should be. The EQS is Mercedes’ first purpose built all new, all electric luxury sedan. Its built on a dedicated platform for Merc’s future electric vehicles. Its an immense 5,265mm long,1,926mm wide and 1,513mm tall. It has more legroom than the already oversized S-Class. The car is so big, the folks at Merc call the interior; A LIVING SPACE! I assure you that I’m not fibbing. You couldn’t make this up, even if you tried. When a car gets to that size you need more than the front wheels steering. This car has 4 wheel steering with the rear wheels capable of turning up to 10 degrees to effectively give it the turning circle of a hatchback, although you will pay extra to unlock this capacity above 4.5 degrees. Accountants showing themselves again! The car currently comes in 2 flavours; the 450+ and 580. The 450+ comes with one powerful electric motor in the rear producing 333hp while the 580 comes with an additional electric motor in the front enabling 4 wheel drive and torque vectoring with 523hp. This gives a 0-100kmph time of 4.3 seconds! In a car bigger than my former bedroom! It is well o!! Anyway, we move. Like all sensible electric cars, the batteries are placed in the floor of the vehicle. Unlike all sensible electric cars, there is no front booth (frunk) where a regular engine would have been. Instead the EQS has a sealed hood with a HEPA filter to thoroughly sanitise the air entering the cabin, I call that Executive Breeze. You can be driving through a biohazard zone and the air in the car will be clean like Maitama breeze in the evening. Back to the batteries, there is the option of getting a 108kWh pack that is good for…. wait for it…. 770km of range. Lagos to Abuja, non stop. My people, let us save ourselves from filling station palaver like the nonsense that happened this week! 770km! That’s like one month of driving for me. What a time to be alive! To charge it, you can plug it in overnight at home with the 11kW on-board charger. Or shell out more cash for a 22kW charger to do it in 5 hours (accountants at work again). In Nigeria we don’t have the superfast charging facilities that can give you 300km of range in 15 minutes, yet. And we don’t have 24 hours electricity yet either. So if you have EQS money, it implies that you must also have John Holt money. But using diesel to recharge an electric car already defeats the purpose of the car. What you need is your own eco-friendly, economic, localised power system and I know a guy…
Back to the car, the shape of the car requires some getting used to but as with all modern Mercs, it looks like that for a reason. Say it with me: aerodynamics. The engineers chased aerodynamic gains to the point the made the door handles retractable and flush with the doors. The side view looks like one curve or “One Bow” as they call it. The front grille has been replaced with a blank black panel and that fascia is raked backwards in tandem with the sharply raked windscreen. Combining everything gives a cab-forward appearance and most importantly a coefficient of drag or air resistance of 2.0 flat. That makes it the most aerodynamically efficient mass market car ever built. This makes the car slip through the air neatly, silently and economically. This also means that a more powerful powertrain will bring higher top speeds because of a higher terminal velocity. But that is not what this car is for. It exists to carry you on a magic carpet from your mansion to your office tower in Central Area in the literal luscious laps of luxury and serenity. So let’s talk about it next.
The EQS is more spacious than the S-Class and is wrapped in more ecoleather, ecowood and metal than you know what to do with. Every occupant, including the little guy in the middle at the back has a dedicated touch screen. The HyperScreen in the front has 55inches of total screen space consisting of 3 different screens (of course its a paid option). There are 15 well positioned Burmeister speakers to drown out any noisy nuisance with music of your choice. The interior LED mood lighting has 190 colours to choose from. The MBUX AI assistant listens eagerly to take your commands and knows exactly where to apply it because it knows exactly which passenger is speaking. The car has 350 sensors all over the car including those for facial recognition that enables it to recognise and load driver and occupant profiles and preferences. You can massage yourself independently, listen to music independently, watch videos independently, manage your aircon independently. And when you want a media detox, you can look out of the optional sunroof and behold the works of God in the sky. That is the definition of peace.
For those interested in getting a fully loaded version, be ready to part with about 53 Million Nigerian Nairas. Not bad eh.
See you next week.