The new Mercedes-Benz EQC is officially unveiled

Mercedes-Benz EQC in white

The new all-electric SUV Mercedes-Benz EQC was officially unveiled today and will be on sale next year.

Here is part of the press release.

“The EQC (combined power consumption: 22.2 kWh/100 km; combined CO2 emissions: 0 g/km, provisional data)1, the first Mercedes-Benz representative of the new product and technology brand EQ, features an all-new drive system development. The interplay between performance and dynamism in combination with a high level of efficiency and comfort was a particular focus of the developers. The EQC has a compact electric drivetrain at each axle, giving the vehicle the driving characteristics of an all-wheel drive. Over a wide operating range, the intelligent control allows dynamic torque distribution between the two driven axles, creating the conditions for high vehicle dynamics. The asynchronous motors have a combined maximum output of 300 kW. The centrepiece of the Mercedes‑Benz EQC is the lithium-ion battery from in-house production housed in the vehicle floor. With an energy content of 80 kWh (NEDC), it employs a sophisticated operating strategy to supply the vehicle with power, enabling an electric range of more than 450 (according to NEDC, provisional figure)1.”

 

I don’t understand why the unreliable NEDC was mentioned, since WLTP already replaced it as the official test cycle in Europe. NEDC is outdated and Mercedes knows it very well. I sincerely hope it was a mistake, since the figures look terrible. With a range of just 450 km and an efficiency of 22,2 kWh/100 km in the fairy tale NEDC test cycle, it looks even worse than the Jaguar I-PACE – which is already a very inefficient electric car. In the more demanding WLTP cycle the Hyundai Kona Electric – with a 64 kWh battery – gets 482 km of range.

 

Anyway, let’s take a look at the powertrain.

 

Maximum variability for more efficiency and stability

In both their drive and recuperation functions, the electric motors operate and function irrespective of the direction of rotation. On the overrun or when braking, the mechanical rotation is converted into electrical energy and used to charge the high-voltage battery (recuperation). In the interests of maximum driving stability and efficiency, the power requirement between the front and rear axle is regulated according to the driving situation. Torque shifting allows the torque to be distributed dynamically between the front and rear axles, ensuring that there is always a satisfying balance between power and efficiency. This gives the EQC the superior driving characteristics of an all-wheel drive.

Under low to medium load conditions, only the front electric motor is operated for efficiency reasons. Maximum recuperative deceleration is achieved by using both electric motors as alternators.

 

Powertrain specs:

CO2 emissions 0 g/km
Power consumption (NEDC) 22.2* kWh/100 km
Range (NEDC) more than 450* km
Drive system 2 asynchronous motors, all-wheel drive
Output 300 kW (408 hp)
Peak torque 765 Nm
Top speed 180 km/h (governed)
Acceleration 0-100 km/h 5.1 s
Battery Lithium-ion
Battery energy content (NEDC) 80 kWh
Battery weight 650 kg

 

 

Equipped with a 7,4 kW on-board charger, the Mercedes-Benz EQC can also be fast charged from 10 to 80 percent in around 40 minutes – at a maximum rate of 110 kW.

 

Charging options: Flexible and fast charging

Whether at home via a wallbox, while shopping, at work or ultra-fast on the motorway: there are various ways to supply electric vehicles with power. Intelligently networked charging solutions focussed on the mobility needs and convenience of customers are an integral part of the new product and technology brand EQ.

As standard the EQC is equipped with a water-cooled onboard charger (OBC) with a capacity of 7.4 kW, making it suitable for AC charging at home or at public charging stations. The charging time required for a full charge depends on the available infrastructure and the country-specific vehicle equipment. Charging at a Mercedes-Benz Wallbox is much faster than at a domestic power socket (see section “The intelligent services for the EQC).

It is faster still with DC charging – which is standard for the EQC – for example via CCS (Combined Charging Systems) in Europe and the USA, CHAdeMO in Japan or GB/T in China. This usually public quick-charging system expands the existing technical standard for AC charging of electric vehicles with the capacity for DC fast charging. Depending on the SoC (status of charge), the EQC can be charged with a maximum output of up to 110 kW at an appropriate charging station. In around 40 minutes, the battery can be charged from 10 – 80 percent SoC (provisional data).

 

Mercedes-Benz EQC at IONITY fast charging network

 

The 80 kWh battery is assembled by Daimler subsidiary Deutsche ACCUMOTIVE with SK innovation battery cells. The battery pack has in total 383 cells and is configured in 96s4p (96 series connections of 4 cells in parallel).

  • Battery pack capacity: 80 kWh
  • Battery pack weight: 650 kg
  • Battery pack maximum voltage: 408 V
  • Battery pack nominal capacity: 210 Ah
  • Battery cell maximum voltage: 4,25 V
  • Battery cell nominal capacity: 52,5 Ah

 

At 650 kg the battery pack is massive and definitely uses NCM 622 cells. With NCM 811 cells it would be at least 100 kg lighter. For example, the 75 kWh battery of the Tesla Model 3 weighs 478 kg. With its low-cobalt content NCA battery cells, Tesla has a great advantage over its competitors. Less raw material equals to less weight, less costs, more efficiency, performance and range.

When Tesla finally upgrades the Model X and S (currently on 18650 standard) with the 21700 cells currently used by the Model 3, these upcoming premium electric cars from legacy automakers will be even far behind. Nonetheless more advanced battery technology isn’t Tesla’s only big advantage when compared to upcoming premium electric cars from legacy automakers, good aerodynamics is also another one. Lower weight combined with better aerodynamics give Tesla a huge head start.

Luxury automakers accustomed to produce ICE (Internal Combustion Engine) cars don’t care about efficiency, but this comes at a much higher cost (less range, less performance and higher price) when applied to electric cars. This mindset has to change if premium legacy automakers want to catch up with Tesla.

 

The battery: a “heart” from Saxony/Germany

The EQC is equipped with the latest generation of a lithium-ion (Li-Ion) battery serving as the energy source for both electric motors. The battery consists of 384 cells and is located in the vehicle floor, between the two axles. The battery system is modular in design, consisting of two modules with 48 cells each and four with 72 cells each. The powerful high-voltage battery has a maximum voltage of 408 V and a nominal capacity of 210 Ah, for an energy content of 80 kWh (according to NEDC).

The integral overall cooling concept of the EQC, consisting of a heat pump function and two electric PTC heater boosters, not only includes the power electronics, the electric motor and the rotor, but also the battery. The entire battery system is liquid-cooled. At low temperatures a battery heater ensures outstanding performance and efficiency (see Climate control section).

The battery is an integral part of the crash concept for the vehicle as a whole. Its low, central location also has a positive effect on the handling characteristics of the EQC (see Safety section).

The battery is produced in Germany, by the wholly-owned Daimler subsidiary Deutsche Accumotive in Kamenz/Saxony (see Production section).

As for all other high-voltage batteries, Mercedes-Benz issues a battery certificate as a commitment to the battery performance.

 

Mercedes-Benz EQC battery pack

 

The new Mercedes-Benz EQC seems to be a very appealing all-electric SUV, I just wished it was more efficient. Unfortunately, for legacy premium automakers efficiency isn’t very important.

What about you? What do you like and dislike the most about this electric car?

 

 

More info:

https://media.daimler.com/marsMediaSite/en/instance/ko.xhtml?oid=40991613

This Post Has 23 Comments

  1. While inefficiency was probably expected, the lack of elegance wasn’t. While the looks are passable when seen from the front, the side view (almost an ortophoto) is incredibly outdated. Also, the bad aerodynamics shows. And why such a long “engine compartment”, when apparently there’s almost nothing in there? It looks as if it wasn’t a specifically all-electric model. It seems to be such a waste of the length of the car.
    The futuristic traces of the early peak photos vanished into a relatively banal car.

    1. Yeah, I think you covered it. I also pretty much hate the interior design. If it’s going to cost the same as a Model X, then I’d pick the X over the ECQ.

      If the aero is such an afterthought, then travelling at highway speeds above 120 kph or more will really send consumption through the roof. If the WLTP range turns out to be 340-360km, then highway speed might reduce that by another 20%, or even more, so only 275km or less for 100%, and then 80% of that (limit of fast charging) is 220 km. So you can go ~200km in good conditions before having to charge. Still good, but it could be much better for an 80kwh pack.

      Still happy that new EVs are coming online, but like the Bolt, I wonder how many of these they’re actually going to build.

  2. Yeah, what you said.
    Why the fake grille?

  3. The plattform will be shared with ICE…thats why there is no frunk and a large tunnel in the middle.

  4. I’m disappointed that such a big company as Daimler didn’t developed dedicated EV platform, but what really matters is price and availability. We will see…

  5. 650 kg para 80kwh de batería es un desastre absoluto “El pack de 100kwh de Tesla se va a 618kg”. A todo esto sumale los 2500kg del vehiculo y los 300km de autonomía real que alcanzara esta tanqueta condiciendo con calma. Una total desilusión con Mercedez esperaba mucho más de esta marca.

    1. Sí también desilusionado. Parece que lo hacen adrede para que no se dispare la demanda de estos coches. También porque tienen que negociar las emisiones en la UE y en USA y si demuestran que ellos ya pueden hace ahora buenos coches eléctricos será más difícil defender los motores de combustión.

      Yes I am also dissapointed. It looks like they make it on purpose to limit the number of clients interested on this car. Also they have to negotiate emission targets with EU and US governments and if they show they already can make a great EV it will be more difficult to defend the combustion engines.

  6. And they say the leaf’s efficiency is bad…. the EQC and IPACE are even worst…even bearing in mind the higher volume and weights…maybe Leaf is not so bad after all..

    Things sound very good for Tesla (M3) and the Koreans (Hyundai Kona (kauai in PT) & Kia Niro)…the million dollar question on the Koreans is why so small quantities available:
    – Are they losing money on them and thus limiting production volumes?
    – Are they having battery production capacity issues?
    In any case, if Tesla can continue ramp production faster, they will gain an edge that might be difficult to revert by legacy manufacturers in 2 years time (BMW will only produce IX3 within 2 years (still no final tech data) and this sort of mass production EV from Mercedes which already seems dated (weight and capacity of batteries as well as efficiency) and will only be produced within 1 year also).

    Hope Audi can bring some nicer specs to push the sales of EV altough in a more restricted premium segment…

    Freddy
    (I have a 40kwh Leaf in Portugal since May and although understand its limitations, until now – 7000kms – it is our family’s main car…)

  7. Ouch, another polluter hitting the roads…

    We really have to question the association EVs – Clean vehicles before EV’s are massively widespread. 0 emission is just an accounting value !
    First, let’s not forget that many principles valid for ICE cars also apply for EV’s.

    A heavier car will consume more … is therefore dirtier.
    Crazy tyres will consume more … are therefore dirtier.
    A car with poor sCx will consume more … is therefore dirtier.

    And all the electricity consumed must produced.

    And furthermore,

    A bigger battery pack will require more materials to produce …. is therefore dirtier
    A EV using electricity produced in old coal plants … is dirtier.

    So how can we make car producers go a cleaner way? Put pressure on them.

    Let medias (Pushevs included) emphasize on ecological production and consumption costs.
    Let consumers, at least those who want to think and act green, buy (electric) vehicles MATCHING THEIR NEEDS !, not matching any trend or marketing effect.

    I signed up for a 28kWh Ioniq. Should I have the choice, my “ideal” EV would be a 40-45 kWh SW Ioniq. And definately not a 2,2 to 2,5 tons tractor, with 80 or 90 kWh, and a base consumption of 250+ Wh / km

    And then again my motto: the least dirty kilometer is the one we don’t drive !

    Take care

    1. I totally agree with you Pierre and that’s why my dream “car” would be the Opel RAK-e – if it wasn’t just a concept…

      https://pushevs.com/electric-vehicles/concepts/opel-rak-e/

      Nissan Land Glider

      https://pushevs.com/electric-vehicles/concepts/nissan-land-glider/

      Or even the Volkswagen Nils.

      https://pushevs.com/electric-vehicles/concepts/volkswagen-nils/

      They would be even more efficient than the Hyundai IONIQ Electric or the Tesla Model 3, perfect for commuters.

      I’m sure that the first automaker to ever produce one of these super efficient vehicles will be a hit with commuters, retirees, millennials or just people that consider that “normal” cars are too expensive to buy and maintain. Car sharing companies would also buy tons of them. How much fun would it be for tourists drive one of those?! Easy parking and fun driving!

      This is the kind of vehicle I wish that Renault Twizy will become in a future generation, instead of the joke it’s now.

    2. Agreed.

  8. Pedro, I personally think that Mercedes PR department made many mistakes when releasing data about the battery. They simply does not understand to simple physics and it is a shame. Only one relevant info is cell count of 384 which gives 96s4p connection. They also have inconsistency in released values. In one material they are presenting 350 V as battery nominal voltage and 218 Ah as battery nominal capacity, which gives only ~76.3 kWh of energy, but definitely not the advertised 80 kWh. In the second material they are talking about 408 V maximum battery charging voltage and 210 Ah capacity. Yes, we can suppose that used cells are 4.25 V but you definitely cannot use this value to calculate the energy content of the battery. Even if the cell nominal voltage could be 3.8 V for 4.25 V cell, it still gives you only the same ~76.6 kWh.

  9. Yes Pajda, I also found it very strange. I think that the battery is more likely to be 74,6 kWh (96 x 3,7 V x 210 Ah) than 80 kWh, which goes along with their initial statement about the EQ when it was just a prototype.

    “The battery, which has a total capacity of over 70 kWh, is charged quickly and efficiently thanks to state-of-the-art charging technologies.”

    https://www.mercedes-benz.com/eq/intl/en/eq/eq/concept-eq/electric-drive.module.html

    The fact that they mentioned 80 kWh (NEDC) makes it even weirder. Maybe 80 kWh is what it takes to completely charge the battery, including the charging losses?! We might just ignore these figures for now.

  10. I think, they will produce only very small quantities (just like Hyundai).
    Because there are no enough battery cells.
    The European factory of SK Innovation has just started to build recently.
    I think, we could see this car very rarely on the roads before 2020/H2.

    1. MNMN lets not associate “low volume car” with “not enough batteries or raw materials”. When a manufacturer design a new car it does it years in advance. If they want to produce many cars they will ask and finance their cell battery supplier to build a bigger cell factory and will secure the correct amount of raw/processed materials with the mining companies. In this case or in others like Hyundai they choose to make few cars for several reasons (risk reduction, investment reduction, not competing with their own ICE cars,…)

  11. Hi Pedro,

    Indeed, all of these are as cooooool as the Fonz himself !!!!
    If any of these comes out for real, does anyone have interest in buying my kids? 😀

    In the 4-seater category, I will closely follow the french Gazelletech car, a light-weight (500kg) versatile 4-seater, assembled in micro-plants, easily rolled-out close to market needs. Terrible look, great concept.

    Best regards, Pierre

  12. “Unfortunately, for legacy premium automakers efficiency isn’t very important.”

    Efficiency has always received a bit of lip-service. Low to mid 20s mpg is “good enough” that their customer base doesn’t care. The impact is probably more time than money, and customers probably don’t think about whether they’re filling a vehicle every 4-5 days vs 6-7 days.

    That falls apart when energy is more precious, in terms of cost, packaging, range, and charge rates. They must design for efficiency from the start – a premium vehicle should not use 2nd rate cells and a repurposed floor plan.

    Mercedes should heed their own slogan – “the best or nothing”.

  13. Hi Pedro,
    I really was expecting more from Mercedes. I would like a less conservative style and spec are kinda meehhh for the price it’s gonna have (I expect at least 80.000€ like the I-pace).
    If the EQC is using only NCM 622 cells it’s short because the car is arriving end 2019, right?
    Why do you thing they didn’t go for the more advanced NCM 811 cells? Aren’t they ready in 2019?
    For the charging speed again bad if it’s only 110 max… Audi is at least 150 max… Better future proof with Ionity and chargers increasing speeds…
    What do you think it’s the main cause for such a bad range? It’s the design with poor sCx? It’s the extra weight? Or the software is bad?
    Even Tesla 75X is bigger and heavier than the EQC and have better range, top speed, etc…
    Just yesterday I saw a vídeo from the crazy Bjørn Nyland and the new KIA Niro with a smaller 64kWh battery did 500km… ok at just 90km/h… but did… and the car is smaller and lighter… but still a SUV…
    Do you think the specs/type of batterys can change until launch?
    Regards
    Vasco

  14. “Battery cell nominal capacity: 52,5 Ah”

    Really? That must be one big cell! More like a module I suppose…

    Otherwise this car doesn’t scream enthusiasm, especially when watching the reveal. Mercedes has to differentiate their EVs from their other equivalent models, yet still being fully in the MB family. They did a good job I think, and went a more ‘zen’ like approach with Scandinavian-inspired interior (which fits well the needs of a larger segment of the population, with current concept of digital detox and mental overload). So it’s a well-thought car with all the craftsmanship and Mercedes quality. It just lacks… passion. Still wonder about advanced LKAS safety features (heard nothing on that), software updates and service options… Finally a German automaker with a non-quirky EV car. Can’t wait for the Audi e-tron and BMW iX3!

    1. That’s actually a pouch cell and there are plenty of pouch cells with even higher capacity.

  15. Hi Vasco.

    Mercedes like any other legacy automaker is probably just being conservative. Tesla on the other hand is more innovative and risked more when chose the more energy dense but less thermally stable NCA chemistry – which requires very advanced/complex BMS and TMS. Tesla’s strategy is already paying off.

    The advertised battery specs could change, especially since they are currently a bit confusing.

    Aerodynamics and weight don’t always explain it all. For example the Chevrolet Bolt EV is less aerodynamic and heavier than the Nissan Leaf, yet it’s more efficient. The powertrain efficiency also counts.

    https://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/Find.do?action=sbs&id=39860&id=40520

    At the moment the Korean companies are making the most efficient electric powertrains for EVs.

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