Not long ago, Ingolstadt-based four-ringed products were easily the laugh of town and got berated for being a family full of identical twins. Oh, how have times changed.
Back in the day, Audi cars were the subtle underdogs of the German luxury world. Filled with technological progress. And styled as if they were a bunch of blind hospital nurses tending to a bunch of deaf convent nuns.
Meanwhile, BMWs were the sporty representatives that everyone craved. Also, everyone else wished they did not see the ominous four DRL rings in their rearview mirrors. As for Mercedes-Benz, it was the king of elegance, comfort, and reliability. With a star perched on top of the hood to help everyone feel better about what they drove and steer “the boat” through bends.
Few of the latter were canyon carvers, save for a few distinct AMG versions. Nevertheless, they delivered the epitome of German luxury and presence. Today, times have changed quite deeply. Audi is the same evolutionary brand but has a few RS attributes to stand out in the crowd, along with the cool A5/A7 models.
BMW, well, you know what happened to the Bavarian brand ever since it decided that quirky is good and blatantly ugly is even better. At least they are easy to recognize, if harder to swallow. As for Mercedes-Benz, barred from the incredible popularity of its W223 S-Class flagship, especially among murdered-out aficionados, there is little to report.
Sure, there’s always the occasional 2022 Mercedes-AMG G-Class 4×4² to look forward to. And Mercedes-AMG is trying hard to become a fully-fledged automaker by – among others – taking the reins for the latest SL-Class iteration. But everything is a game of “spot the differences, without any hints and blindfolded” for them, lately.
Take a C-Class, E-Class, and S-Class and without seeing their size difference firsthand, it is going to be extremely hard to tell who’s who. The same is happening across the EQ roster. And the latest Mercedes-AMG 43 and 53, no matter how enticing they may seem at first sight, are just more of the same.
Just to make a point, we tucked inside the gallery above some shots of a crimson EQS 53 4MATIC+. It bodes well for the red EQE that was officially unveiled this very week. Now, can you tell which is which?
We are going to give you a hint: one has the 43 badge and the big EQS has the 53 logo… With that in mind, if your car purchase is made with the heart, not the mind, these electric four-doors are probably not your first choice. However, there is also a logical case to be made.
Especially if they are going to be priced more affordably than we expect them to be. At least in Europe (America only gets the top powertrain choice), there is an effortless way to decide which one should adorn the driveway or A/C garage. If you are into lengthy yet sporty sustainable cruising, then for sure the lesser EQE 43 will be the right call.
Yes, it only comes with 350 kW/476 ps/469 hp and 858 Nm (633 lb-ft). But the acceleration still is not something to be trifled with at 4.2 seconds to 100 kph (62 mph) with at least 50% SoC. And fast Autobahn travels are a given, thanks to a maximum speed of 210 kph/130 kph. Yet, the single most important trump card is the 90.6 kWh battery pack. This, in turn, will lend a preliminary WLTP range of 462 to 533 km (287/331 miles).
Whereas the EQE 53, especially with the AMG DYNAMIC PLUS package, is all about raw, unbridled power. In the most extreme use-case scenario, it will churn out up to 505 kW/687 ps/677 hp. As opposed to a standard setting of 460 kW/626 ps/617 hp. And that will be enough to reach 60 mph/96 kph in a mere 3.2 seconds (3.3s to 100 kph/62 mph), as well as a top speed of 240 kph/149 mph!