Let's start off with a little history lesson, shall we?
Mercedes-Benz used to categorize their SUVs under the M-Class lineup, which began in 1997. For those old enough to remember, those were the days of The Lost World: Jurassic Park movie where the ML320 was heavily promoted. Then in 2015, the entire Mercedes lineup was restructured, and the previously known M-Class SUV line was renamed the GL-Class to bring it closer to the iconic G-Class 4x4.
Now that everyone is shifting from combustion to electric power, the German manufacturer has the EQ-class to distinguish their all-electric lineup. So how did they name their full-size EV SUV to set it apart from their flagship EQS sedan? Well, they simply named it the EQS SUV.
The all-new EQS SUV adopts the “one bow” design and cab-forward structure of the sedan and shares a lot of similarities with the flagship EV. But as expected, the sloping roofline is gone to make room for a third-row seat.
Inside, the EQS SUV gets the same tech-oriented treatment as the EQS and EQE sedans with three large screens on the dashboard. For its infotainment system, there's an optional 17.7-inch OLED center display, while the driver and passenger both get 12.3-inch screens – one as an instrument panel and the other for navigation or in-car entertainment purposes.
Cabin materials are topnotch with a combination of wood, soft-touch plastics, and leather upholstery all over the SUV's interior. There's also multi-color accent lighting and a panoramic roof to set a luxurious and relaxing ambiance, while a Burmester 3D audio system with Dolby Atmos technology takes care of the premium aural experience.
The EQS SUV comes in two trim levels – the EQS 450 and the EQS 580. The former has 4MATIC all-wheel-drive as an option, while the latter gets it as standard. Mercedes also made the SUV more powerful than its sedan sibling, as the EQS 450 has 355 PS and 568 Nm of torque, while the top-spec EQS 580 has 536 PS with 858 Nm from its two electric motors.
Mercedes claims the EQS 450 could travel up to 600 kilometers on a single charge. To put that into perspective, the SUV can (technically) reach Aparri from Manila without having to recharge its batteries. Range estimates for the EQS 580 are not yet available, but they should come close to the EQS 450's numbers. Once you've run out of battery juice, the DC fast charger could charge the battery from 10 to 80% in just 31 minutes. Use the standard 240-volt charger though and the 10 to 100% charge takes 11 hours and 15 minutes to complete.
The all-new EQS SUV will be produced in Mercedes-Benz's Tuscaloosa, Alabama plant, and as such, customers from the United States will be the first to experience the luxury EV SUV by late 2022. If these are not luxurious enough for you, there could be a Maybach version coming, as Mercedes had a concept version last year in Munich.