Mercedes-Benz EQB electric SUV arrives in US next year
Mercedes' new compact EV will be offered with two power levels -- and it's cute as heck.
Steven EwingFormer managing editor
Steven Ewing spent his childhood reading car magazines, making his career as an automotive journalist an absolute dream job. After getting his foot in the door at Automobile while he was still a teenager, Ewing found homes on the mastheads at Winding Road magazine, Autoblog and Motor1.com before joining the CNET team in 2018. He has also served on the World Car Awards jury. Ewing grew up ingrained in the car culture of Detroit -- the Motor City -- before eventually moving to Los Angeles. In his free time, Ewing loves to cook, binge trash TV and play the drums.
When it goes on sale in 2022, the EQB will be offered in two variants: EQB300 4Matic and EQB350 4Matic. Both are powered by a 66.5-kilowatt-hour battery and two electric motors. And as their names suggest, both have all-wheel drive. When hooked up to a DC fast charger, the EQBs can go from a 10% to 80% state of charge in 31 minutes, and Mercedes-Benz estimates a driving range of about 260 miles, though that's using the notoriously optimistic European WLTP test cycle.
Why the two models, then? Each one has a different power output. Mercedes-Benz says the EQB300 produces 225 horsepower and 288 pound-feet of torque while the EQB350 offers 288 hp and 384 lb-ft. The company doesn't have any 0-to-60-mph acceleration time estimates just yet, but suffice it to say, the EQB350 will be a lot quicker.
Regardless of output, the new EQB looks awesome, with standard 18-inch wheels, LED exterior lighting and an EQ-specific front fascia that visually distinguishes this SUV from the gas-powered GLB-Class. Inside, the EQB has a pair of 10.3-inch digital displays -- one for the instrument cluster and one for the infotainment screen -- running Mercedes' MBUX software. Like the other GLB-Class models, a whole mess of driver-assistance features are available, and the EQB can be had with either five- or seven-passenger seating configurations.
The one thing that's still TBD? Pricing. The 2021 GLB250 4Matic starts just above $40,000, but the electric EQB will surely be more expensive. Expected to compete with vehicles like the Tesla Model Y, Volkswagen ID 4 and upcoming Audi Q4 E-Tron, expect a price tag closer to $50,000.
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