Mercedes EQS - Where the S is silent
Last Word First
Peter Roget had no idea in 1805, when he accumulated nouns and pronouns on all
manner of life and living in his Thesaurus, that a company yet to exist would place an
electrically-powered, motorised vehicle for public consumption, which would go
some way to render his diligence as inadequate.
Yep, such is the tech and talent of the Mercedes-Benz EQS, that descriptive words
may fail dismally to capture what is on offer. As a physical, tactile statement of how
far our human race has come technically, this new EQS should qualify new owners
with a master’s degree if they fully understand its capabilities.
Of course, it will judge it on its visuals, where the finest leather and advanced
technologies marry with electrical propulsion to provide those within, with elegance
and ambience worthy of the finest five-star hotel – it wears the term sumptuous with
Distinctive looks, coupe design, powerful on road for a car over five metres long and
close to two sand a half-tonnes, the EQS comes at a price point that will appeal only
to those with the means. Definitely aimed at those who also have a lifestyle at the
premium side, where their everyday contains their interaction with only the very
best, the EQS 450+ will find happy homes and even happier passengers.
Model: EQS 450+
Style: Luxury five-door, five-seat hatchback
Propulsion: Full Electric –
Drive: Rear-wheel drive – Rear-wheel steer
Power output: 333bhp
WLTP Range: 717 kms
Annual Road Tax: €120
Road Tax Band; (7% VRT / Band 1)
Boot space: 610 litres – 1770 litres with rear seats folded
Length: 5212 mm
Width: 1926 mm
Height: 1512 mm
Weight: 2480kgs unladen
Introductory Price: €129, 965
Test-car Price: €168,001
Over five metres long and just shy of two metres wide, this premium coupe takes up
all its designated space in the carpark. My test car stood on aerodynamically
optimised 21” alloys, its smooth curves belie its size, the solid front radiator grill
proclaiming its parentage via the centrally-positioned large star. It looks potent,
those large wheels with an apparent eagle-grip on the tarmac, even at a standstill. A
flick of the key fob and the door handles emerge from their hiding place, backlit to
provide their easy finding and adding to the EQS’s comfort menu.
Opening the door and entering the Aladdin’s Cave that awaits all who duck under its
coupe slopes, will overload the eyes of many, my car equipped with the MBUX
Hyper-screen that stretches for A-pillar to A-pillar, the Macchiato Beige Nappa
Leather enveloping you in its sumptuous luxury, your every blink unveiling a new
place to stare.
Getting a good driving position via the power seat and steering is a doddle and so
important for those long journeys and to visually access the vast swathe of
information made available. I’m a big fan of Head-up Display, (HUD), and like the
relevant information on current speed, post speed limit and Sat Nave information, all
in my eye-line very beneficial.
There is no substitute and huge incentive to acquaint yourself with all the comfort,
safety and entertainment systems on offer in the EQS, the steering wheel controls
providing vital and easy access that’s worth mastering.
Now, the Hyperscreen – all 141cms of it that incorporates three screens instead of the
normal two, is a technical talking point that could easily result in a master’s degree.
Requiring an additional €12,213, access to your EQS’s myriad of information, to
avoid on-road distraction, is best done through voice command and simply saying,
‘Hey Mercedes’ and asking for whatever your heart desires, within reason!
As a place to spend time, the internal room, furnishings and finish of the EQS is
nothing short of decadent, a place of sumptuous guilt. There are plenty of stowage
cubbies front and rear, with boot space an accommodating 610 litres, enlarging to
1,770 litres with the rear seats folded.
On the Road
Given where and to whom this luxury coupe is aimed, it would be somewhat
disrespectful and irrelevant to go charging up mountain passes in the EQS’s 2.4
tonne ensemble. That said, its 333bhp and 565Nm of torque allows it to be boogied
along with serious intent, in almost virtual silence. Steering feel is not overly
informative, but plan well, settle it on the brakes before you attack your favourite
corner and it behaves without complaint. Remembering that we cannot defy physics
is proven in the EQS, a little respect and understanding results in a serene
experience, my only issue was ducking my head to enter under its sloped roofline –
my frame being over six-feet in elevation.
With a range of 780km on a full charge, the dreaded aspect of range anxiety should
not dominate the use and enjoyment of the EQS, with the most heavy-footed driver
ensured of some 600km between searching for the nearest charge station. Charging
time from ten percent to eighty percent is 31 minutes of a fast DC charger, with those
using an AC charger requiring close to twelve hours to see 100% on the gauge. A
fifteen-minute quick charge on a fast charge will add 300km to your journey-bank.
As might be assumed, there is an extensive umbrella of safety systems sheltering
every movement of the EQS, their covert presence only announcing themselves via a
flash on the dash. Here again, some time spent familiarising yourself on the EQS
menu is well worth the investment, as some of these systems, outlined below, will
intrude on your drive without seeking permission
Some of the EQS Safety Systems
Active Distance Assist DISTRONIC
On all types of roads – motorways, country roads or in town – this intelligent system
can automatically maintain a pre-set distance from vehicles ahead. Special features
Predictive speed regulation ahead of speed limits
Reaction at a driving speed of up to 100 km/h to stationary vehicles on the
Selection of DISTRONIC dynamics in MBUX, independently of DYNAMIC
Adjustment of set speed and acceleration for maximum range
With the navigation with Electric Intelligence (see separate chapter), the
charging status at the destination or also at the intermediate charging point
can be specified if desired when route guidance is activated. Active Distance
Assist DISTRONIC then adjusts the acceleration behaviour and, if necessary,
the cruising speed to meet this specification.
Also new is the adjustment of the set speed at rest areas to 50 km/h.
Active Steering Assist
This helps the driver to stay in lane at speeds up to 210 km/h. Special features are
Lane detection at low speeds additionally with 360° camera
Significantly improved availability and performance on bends on country
Improved lane centring on motorways
Situation-specific off-centred driving (e.g., forming an emergency corridor,
but also following the road edge on country roads with no centre marking)
Traffic Sign Assist
In addition to conventionally signposted speed limits, this recognises overhead
gantries and signs at roadworks. This includes warnings about running a stop sign
and a red light.
Active Lane Keeping Assist
In a speed range of 60 to 210 km/h, Active Lane Keeping Assist uses a camera to
detect when road markings or road edges are crossed, helping the driver to avoid
leaving the driving lane unintentionally. The system also intervenes if there is a
danger of collision with detected road users in the adjacent lane, e.g., with
overtaking or oncoming vehicles. Special features are
The reaction to detected lane edges, e.g., a grass shoulder
Particularly intuitive steering intervention
Adjustment of sensitivity via a menu (early, medium, late)
The addition of Active Ambient Lighting, DIGITAL LIGHT and the
Augmented Reality Head-up Display to the hazard warning system
Active Lane Change Assist
Active Lane Change Assist cooperatively assists the driver of the EQS when changing
to an adjacent lane. A lane change to the right or left is only assisted if the sensors
detect that the adjacent lane is separated from the present lane by interrupted lane
markings, and no other vehicles are recognised in the relevant danger zone. In
conjunction with DIGITAL LIGHT, an intuitive lighting scenario is also created at
Active Emergency Stop Assist
Active Emergency Stop Assist brakes the vehicle to a standstill in its own lane if it
recognises that the driver is no longer responding to the traffic situation for a longer
period. As part of the standard Active Lane Keeping Assist, this works even if Active
Distance Assist DISTRONIC with Steering Assist is not switched on. Other features:
Belt tensioning and braking impulse as a final signal of impending braking
Optional single lane change (at 80 km/h, no obstacles in adjacent lane)
This system included as standard is able to recognise typical signs of drowsiness and
driver inattention, and displays a warning message prompting them to take a break.
The additional micro-sleep warning is a new feature. It analyses the driver's eyelid
movements through a camera on the driver's display (only in conjunction with
MBUX Hyperscreen). The micro-sleep warning function is already active from a
speed of 20 km/h.