Mercedes-Benz has unveiled the EQA, the first full-electric model in its compact car class; set to arrive in Singapore in the second half of 2021
Mercedes-Benz has pulled the wraps off the EQA, its first electric car to sit in its compact car class, and the GLA-based electric SUV could prove to be the car that finally makes electric motoring widely acceptable to the masses here.
The EQA will go on sale in Europe in February, and is expected to arrive in Singapore by the second half of this year. Prices start from 47,540 Euros in Germany, but translated to Singapore dollars, inclusive of the relevant taxes and rebates, the EQA should probably retail for roughly around S$200,000 or so including COE.
The initial launch model is the EQA 250, which has 190hp and 375Nm of torque, allowing it to go from 0-100km/h in 8.9 seconds, and reach a top speed of 160km/h. Fully charged, the EQA 250 has a range of about 480km, and Mercedes-Benz says that the car can be recharged from empty to full via an 11kW charger in around six hours.
With a 100kW fast charger though, the EQA 250 can achieve an 80 percent charge in 30 minutes. Later on, Mercedes-Benz will introduce all-wheel-drive versions of the EQA, which will have an additional electric motor at the rear axle, as well as models with a longer range of up to 500km.
Visually, the EQA’s similarity to the GLA is evident, right down to its proportions and dimensions. The overall silhouette is similar, with the EQA marked out by the black panel grille up front that is part of Mercedes-Benz’s EQ electric car identity. The rear is more visibly differentiated with a single bar taillight treatment that Mercedes-Benz says offers a “high level of recognisability”.
Similarly, the EQA’s interior essentially mimics the GLA’s, with the basic layout remaining unchanged, and only minor trim additions such as rose gold elements and unique backlighting features marking out the electric model from regular GLAs.
As far as tech goes, the EQA features as standard an online-based navigation system with ‘intelligence’ function, which can calculate the best route to the destination using prevailing conditions such as weather and traffic, as well as the car’s remaining range and availability of charging stations along the route.
The EQA’s positioning as a premium compact SUV, based upon the GLA, is significant, as this particular segment has proven to be somewhat of a banker for the brand in recent years. According to Mercedes-Benz, one in 10 of its new cars sold in 2020 was either a GLA or a GLB, proving that premium compact SUVs are now a major component of the brand’s product strategy.
In the local context, the EQA could also play an important role in pushing the electric car movement towards a greater audience, given the clout of the Mercedes-Benz brand here. The Three Pointed Star ended 2020 as the second best selling make here in Singapore with 6,562 units sold (behind Toyota), and while there are no breakdown of figures per model line as yet, judging by the number of GLAs, and of late GLBs too, on our roads, there’s no question that premium compact SUVs now form a significant percentage of Mercedes-Benz sales locally.