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Wayne Cunningham/CNET

Mercedes-Benz puts new electric car into production

Mercedes-Benz showed off its new E-Cell electric car at the 2010 Paris Motor Show.

Mercedes-Benz E-Cell
Mercedes-Benz begins a production run limited to 500 models of the new E-Cell. Wayne Cunningham/CNET

Continuing its electric car research, Mercedes-Benz has begun series production of 500 E-Cell electric cars. We got a look at the car during the 2010 Paris Motor Show.

The new E-Cell uses the Mercedes-Benz A-class platform, with an electric powertrain provided by Tesla. With two lithium ion battery packs sandwiched under the floor of the car, the interior space is unaffected by the electric drive.

Under New European Drive Cycle testing, the E-Cell gets a range rating of 125 miles (200 kilometers), making it suitable for urban areas. Its electric motor produces 95 horsepower and 214 pound-feet of torque.

Units from the initial production run will be leased to customers in Germany, France, and the Netherlands.