Mercedes-Benz' EQA crossover is its first sub-$50,000 EV

The compact SUV will launch in Europe with a sub-300 mile range.

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Steve Dent
January 20th, 2021
Mercedes-EQ, EQA, AMG Line, mountaingrau magno, Studioaufnahme; EQA 250 (Stromverbrauch kombiniert: 15,7 kWh/100 km; CO2-Emissionen kombiniert: 0 g/km) //  Mercedes-EQ, EQA, AMG Line, mountain grey magno, studio shot; EQA 250 (combined electrical consumption: 15.7 kWh/100 km; combined CO2 emissions: 0 g/km)
Mercedes-Benz AG

After teasing it late last year, Mercedes has unveiled the EQA, its latest entry as part of a plan to release wide range of EVs in the coming years. With a 66.5 kWh battery pack, the compact crossover will have a range under 300 miles and a list price starting at €39,950 ($48,440).

The EQA is in roughly the same category as Hyundai’s Kona EV (with a 64 kWh battery),and has similar specs as well. The first version comes with a 188 horsepower motor with 277 pound-feet of torque, compared to 201 horsepower and 291 pound-feet of torque for the Kona EV. However, Mercedes will eventually offer versions with up to 268 horsepower.

With the launch specs, the EQA will go from 0-100 km/h (62 mph) in a modest 8.9 seconds while hitting a top speed of 99 mph. The first version is a front-wheel drive model, but Mercedes will eventually launch all-wheel drive variants as well.

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Mercedes has promised a 301 mile range based on the NEDC (New European Driving Cycle), which has largely been replaced by the more pessimistic WLTP standard. The EPA standard used in the US is even less generous, so the EQA’s range will be well under 300 miles if it ever arrives stateside. By way of comparison, the Hyunda Kona EV has a 258 mile EPA range with a slightly smaller battery, besting all other EVs sold in the US except, well, any of Tesla’s models.

On the tech side, the EQA will come with the automaker’s second-gen MBUX infotainment system with a fully digital and voice-controlled user interface. Buyers can choose either two 7-inch displays for the instrument cluster and infotainment screen, or a dual 10.25-inch widescreen version.

Mercedes’ predictive “Navigation with Electric Intelligence” feature lets you choose the fastest route given charge times, weather, traffic and your driving habits. Other standard features include automatic braking and a lane-keeping assist feature. With another new feature, the EQA can pump excess heat from the battery pack to the passenger compartment, much like Tesla does with the Model Y. That essentially allows for free heat without extra battery drain.

With the price under $50,000 the EQA becomes Mercedes entry-level EV and should have broad appeal given what looks like decent range. There’s no guarantee yet that it will come to the US, though the company told Roadshow to “stay tuned for more details in the coming months.”

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