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Electric driving the Mercedes way

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The Mercedes-Benz EQC is Mercedes’ answer to the Audi E-Tron, the Jaguar i-PACE, and the Tesla Model X. Athlon tested the luxury electric SUV for two weeks: “Highly recommended for its price bracket.”

Although the EQC is an electric car, it looks like a thoroughbred Mercedes. That recognisability is nice. “Still, the car isn’t just an electrical duplicate of the GLC, Mercedes’ petrol and diesel version. The EQC really has its own character. That’s pretty cool,” says Simon Leloux, internal sales manager at Athlon.

“The car looks good and is equipped with the latest comfort and safety features. For example, the GPS takes charging breaks into account when calculating your travel time. The electric drive and the luxurious finish make you feel as if you are floating on the road. There’s plenty of seating space in the front and the back. Only the boot is smaller than that of the GLC, so you have to take that into account if you want to go on holiday with the EQC, for example. The driver also has to be extra alert for vulnerable road users: they won’t hear the car approaching since the engine is noiseless.”

Fast charging

On paper, the EQC achieves a driving range of up to 417 kilometres. “In practice, with a realistic driving style, it’s more likely to be 350 kilometres,” says Leloux. “This is more than sufficient for daily commuting to and from work. Because the battery never runs out completely, it recharges quickly. If you want to travel long distances, it is best to look for charging points on direct current (DC) along the way. Such quick chargers can almost fully charge a depleted battery in twenty minutes. A charging point on alternating current (AC), such as a standard public charging station or a private wall-box, takes almost five hours to do so. Recharging the car to a normal power outlet is not recommended for long journeys; it takes more than eleven hours to recharge when the battery is completely empty.”

Value for money

With a minimum price of €80,995, the Mercedes-Benz EQC is in the upper price bracket. Leloux says the car still offers good value for money. “The EQC won’t be accessible to everyone because of its higher asking price. But it’s definitely worth considering within its price bracket. As a lease car in a business context, the EQC is slightly cheaper than the Jaguar i-PACE and a lot cheaper than the Audi E-Tron and the Tesla Model X. And for that lower price, you can count on a smooth, comfortable electric car with the authentic Mercedes feeling.”

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