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Enjoy the silence – Mercedes-Benz EQC 400 4MATIC AMG Line

It’s certainly not as revolutionary as some of its rivals but there is an overall feeling of refinement. Along with silent running, high-speed road, tyre and suspension noise have been very well suppressed while the ride is not too soft in so far as you get a good feel of the road. The car is on the heavy side, mind, so you can expect some rock and roll if you get too ambitious on the bends.
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18 July 2023

 

What is it?

BACK in 2016 at the Paris Motor Show, Mercedes‑Benz first presented its new product and technology brand for electromobility ….. and now it’s here.

The EQC is the first Mercedes-Benz vehicle to be launched under the EQ brand and it comes with a seamless, clear design and colour highlights typical of the brand and accompanied by dynamic performance thanks to two electric motors at the front and rear axles with a combined output of 300 kW.

It has a range of around 250 miles and also offers comprehensive services with Mercedes me, and a high-quality interior also pioneers an avant-garde electro-look. One example is the ribbed edge of the instrument panel, which resembles the cooling ribs of a hi-fi amplifier. The instrument panel is designed as a driver-oriented cockpit.

The typical Mercedes-Benz wing profile is asymmetrical, with a “cut-out” in the driver area. This is where one of the visual highlights of the cockpit is located – a high-tech, high gloss cassette housing flat air vents with key-shaped, rosé-gold coloured louvres.

As the first Mercedes-Benz model to be launched under the new product and technology brand EQ, the EQC features an all-new drive system development with compact electric drivetrains at each axle. These give the EQC the driving characteristics of an all-wheel drive.

To reduce power consumption and increase dynamism, the electric drivetrains are configured differently: the front electric motor is optimised for best possible efficiency in the low to medium load range, while the rear one determines dynamism. Together, they generate an output of 300 kW and a maximum torque of 765 Nm.

Mercedes-Benz engineers have enhanced noise comfort with a number of measures. In the EQC the powerpacks are isolated by rubber mounts at two points: where the powerpack connects to its subframe and where the subframe connects to the body. This effective isolation is supplemented with insulation measures. As a result, the interior of the EQC is extremely quiet.

The lithium-ion battery, which has an energy content of 80 kWh (NEDC) supplies the vehicle with power. The power consumption and range of electric vehicles depend very much on the driving style. The EQC supports its driver with five driving programs, each with different characteristics: COMFORT, ECO, MAX RANGE, SPORT and an individually adaptable program. In the more economical driving modes, the haptic accelerator pedal that prompts the driver to conserve power plays an important role. The driver is also able to influence the recuperation level using paddles behind the steering wheel.

The ECO Assist system gives the driver comprehensive support when driving predictively: by prompting the driver when it is appropriate to come off the accelerator, e.g. because the vehicle is approaching a speed limit, and by functions such as coasting and specific control of recuperation. For this purpose, navigation data, traffic sign recognition and information from the intelligent safety assistants (radar and stereo camera) are linked and processed.

Prices start at around £74,300, with monthly deals at around £650. There’s just one powertrain and battery option and three different trim levels to choose from in the UK – all of which fit an AMG Line styling package with varying levels of technology and leather.

What do we think?

Well, it has the feel of any of Mercedes’ only without the engine noise. The similarity in feel and ride is down to the fact that the EQC is basically an electrified GLC with those two electric motors replacing the combustion engine while a battery as been placed under the floor.

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The EQC has the same suspension and most of the underbody as the GLC so Mercedes has actually been very cautious with its first mainstream electric car and by using an adapted GLC platform you wont find any more room that may expect from an EV. But you will find the same comfortable and relaxing ride.

It’s certainly not as revolutionary as some of its rivals but there is an overall feeling of refinement. Along with silent running, high-speed road, tyre and suspension noise have been very well suppressed while the ride is not too soft in so far as you get a good feel of the road. The car is on the heavy side, mind, so you can expect some rock and roll if you get too ambitious on the bends.

Range is quoted at 259 miles but realistically it is around 200 miles which doesn’t actually stack up so well against premium rivals who now offer 300+ (some also at a lower price). A high speed DC charger can top up from 10% to 80% charged in around 40 minutes. Our home Project EV 7.5kW charger took around eight hours to top the battery up.

As for performance, you can expect the same startling initial acceleration you get from most EVs, although response then become more sedate as the two and a half tons of weight start to drag. Still, the EQC will make the 0.62mph sprint in a fraction over five seconds.

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There is regenerative braking which can be set at a number of levels. The ‘auto’ setting uses the car’s camera and radar sensors, and navigation data to take a snap shot of what’s around including the speed of the car in front, the speed limits, hills junctions and bends.

In the cabin there are two joined-up displays mounted atop the dashboard and the two screens are 10.25-inches in size. The steering wheel contains two small (almost too small) touchpads which can be used to control the left and right screen respectively. Touch one inadvertently and you can change the displays even though you probably don’t want to.

The front seats are comfortable and high up although those travelling in the rear might feel a little constricted due to the comparatively short wheelbase. Although there’s no prop shaft or exhaust, the centre tunnel remains to house some safety strengthening, The boot is pretty roomy at 500 litres.

Full specification of the Mercedes-Benz EQC 400 4MATIC AMG Line here.

 

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