Another competitor has joined the rapidly growing luxury electric SUV sector – called the Mercedes EQE SUV. It’s on sale now with two powertrain options and three trim levels to choose from, borrowing plenty of design and technology from the EQE and EQS.
The EQE SUV is effectively a shrunken version of the EQS SUV. Mercedes senior manager for vehicle testing, Frank Wundrak commented on the electric SUV: “It’s a different kind of car [to EQS]. It’s for younger buyers; an electric GLE. It needed to be a universal tool.”
The range starts with AMG Line, then comes AMG Line Premium, followed by AMG Line Premium Plus and lastly there’s an alternative comfort-focused option called Business Line. Mercedes sells the Electric Art Line in other markets without the AMG bodykit but this isn’t coming to the UK. A full-fat Mercedes-AMG 53 model will arrive later this year, with more power and a higher price tag.
Pricing and specs
The EQE SUV range kicks off with the 350 4MATIC AMG Line and features electric memory function seats finished in leather. Instead of the Mercedes ‘Hyperscreen’ infotainment, there’s a combination of 12.8-inch and 12.3-inch displays. The exterior of the AMG Line offers LED adaptive headlights, AMG body styling and 20-inch AMG wheels.
The AMG Line Premium can be had from £99,260 and it comes with an upgraded sound system, built-in dashcam, Mercedes’ augmented reality navigation technology. The Hyperscreen (Mercedes’ huge three-screen layout) can be optioned on the AMG Line Premium for £7,995.
A couple of exterior tweaks appear on this model, with larger 21-inch wheels and a panoramic sliding sunroof. There’s also extra safety in the form of the standard-fit ‘Driving Assistance Package’ and parking assist. Rear-axle steering appears with up to 10 degrees of turning – giving the EQE SUV a smaller turning radius than a Vauxhall Astra.
For now the AMG Premium Plus is the range-topping EQE SUV and it starts from £112,260. It benefits from a Hyperscreen as standard, head-up display and MBUX voice command. To give the EQE SUV some extra refinement, there’s also noise reduction from thicker glass.
22-inch AMG wheels and bespoke trim on the grille and rear bumper set the Premium Plus model apart visually. Mercedes has added its ‘Digital Light’ which can display information about road conditions via the headlights.
Business Class can be swapped in as an option pack for no additional cost, adding a TV Tuner with the Hyperscreen, Mercedes’ Air Balance scent for the cabin and heated seats and steering wheel.
Upping the model from 350 to 500 in range-topping Premium Plus or Business Class guise increases the price tag to £121,760.
Design and dimensions
Visually, there’s very little to distinguish the EQE SUV from the equivalent EQS. Offering five seats instead of seven, the EQE measures 4,863mm long and 1,940mm wide. It’s 262mm shorter than the EQS, but crucially the wheelbase is reduced by just 180mm – so space inside is generous.
At the front, the EQE SUV gets a similar lighting treatment, with a full-width lightbar and LED headlamps. The lighting signature itself matches that first seen on the EQE saloon, with two triangular elements instead of EQS’s three. The blanked off grille and large Mercedes badge complete the family face.
The EQE SUV is offered with a choice of alloy wheel designs ranging from 19 to 22 inches, plus options like the silver side steps which actually aid the car’s aerodynamic efficiency.
At the rear, there’s a full-LED light bar, which Mercedes says has the shape of a “curved and illuminated 3D helix”. Every car gets a power tailgate as standard.
Boot space stands at 520 litres – 20 litres more than a BMW iX – with the EQE’s rear seats splitting in a 40:20:40 formation. Fold them down and the SUV boasts a 1,675 litre load area, and there’s space under the floor for the charge cables. Mercedes, as with the EQA, EQB and EQS, doesn’t offer storage in the nose of the EQE SUV.
Interior and technology
Inside, the EQE lifts its optional Hyperscreen dashboard layout from the EQS completely unchanged; the exact same part is fitted to both cars. The 56-inch curved screen comprises three displays, plus Dolby Atmos integration – designed to offer near-cinema-like surround sound audio for watching movies while the car charges.
In terms of charging, the EQE SUV will match its saloon sibling’s 170kW DC rapid charge speeds, which should result in a 10-80 per cent top up in just over 30 minutes.
The EQE saloon is currently only offered with a single motor (AMG aside), but the SUV model will get the option of dual motors for 4MATIC all-wheel drive.
All versions of the EQE SUV use a 90kWh battery and maximum range stands at 334 miles from the 350 4MATIC where the 500 4MATIC will offer 324 miles. It’s probably the more powerful dual-motor Mercedes-AMG EQE 53 4MATIC+ SUV, despite using the same battery, that will post a shorter overall range – expected to be in the region of 280 miles. The EQE SUV comes with a heat pump as standard, plus Mercedes says that “several variants of energy recovery are included and the ECO Assistance determines the most efficient driving style”.
The 350 and the 500 can be paired with any trim level apart from the AMG Line – which is only offered on the 350. The 350 comes with 288bhp and 765Nm of torque for a 0-60mph time of 6.6 seconds. With 402bhp and 858Nm of torque available, the 500 will dispatch the same sprint in 4.9 seconds.
In 53 guise, AMG’s first all-electric SUV will boast 617bhp and 950Nm of torque, plus air suspension and adjustable damping, as well as AMG-specific brakes. Owners will be able to spec the optional AMG Dynamic Plus Package, boosting power to 678bhp with up to 1,000Nm of torque for a 0-62mph time of 3.5 seconds and a 149mph top speed.
The AMG version will also gain some design tweaks to stand out as the performance-orientated model. It’ll offer sports seats with bespoke stitching, an AMG Performance steering wheel, aluminium paddles, AMG pedals, AMG floor mats plus AMG-specific functions within the infotainment system.
Semi-autonomous drive functions and driver assistance systems will feature heavily on all EQE models, including Active Brake Assist, Active Lane Keeping Assist, and Speed Limit Assist, plus a Parking Package with reversing camera.