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Mercedes might use the prefix EQ for its electric subbrand

That's bound to confuse some well-heeled audio engineers.

AutoExpress believes the first MEQ vehicle will be a large, Tesla Model S competitor called EQS.

Daniel Roland/AFP/Getty Images

Last week, I wrote about a Bloomberg piece that suggested Mercedes-Benz is on the verge of releasing a subbrand dedicated to electric vehicles. Now, it appears there's more evidence to back up this claim, and that comes in the form of some pretty straightforward trademarks.

The German automaker applied to trademark the EQ prefix and several slogans including "EQ inside" and "Generation MEQ," AutoExpress reports. Its trademark application for the prefix covers a variety of potential badges, from EQA all the way down to EQX. If this were a random trademark, it would be an awfully specific random trademark, although automakers do occasionally apply for patents and trademarks on ideas that may never make it to the public.

AutoExpress and other outlets believe that Mercedes' electric subbrand will be called MEQ, perhaps a shortened version of Mercedes-EQ that follows in the taxonomic tradition of Mercedes-Benz and Mercedes-AMG. Vehicles within that subbrand would be labeled like usual, with the last letter (e.g., EQB, EQS) denoting the vehicle's size and position within the lineup.

Mercedes has not been quiet about its intent to launch a battery-electric lineup. Both BMW and Audi have put efforts into similar measures, and Mercedes isn't about to be the only German luxury brand without its own EV lineup. It's rumored that the first vehicle to fall under this subbrand will be unveiled at the Paris Motor Show this fall.

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