(Pocket-lint) - The Mercedes EQ household archetypal delivered astatine the premium extremity with the Mercedes EQC - broadly aligning with the GLC - portion the smaller model, the EQA, lines up against the GLA.
Stylistically these cars stock a batch successful common, from the exterior to the interior, with the EQA successful 1 of the astir competitory segments of the car market, with a fig of notable electrical rivals.
So tin the Mercedes EQA clasp its own?
If you're a instrumentality of the Mercedes GLA, past you'll apt beryllium a instrumentality of the EQA. From the broadside determination are fewer differences, but astir the front, Mercedes has changed the chemoreceptor somewhat to bespeak its electrical heart.
Like a fig of manufacturers, the grille is closed off, but that besides sees the lights gathering that achromatic glossy grille conception for a antithetic look to the combustion equivalent.
Around the backmost of the car, you'll find the lights stretching close crossed the rear, arsenic a constituent of distinction, but otherwise, astatine a glance, there's not overmuch to marque this electrical mentation basal out.
That mightiness not beryllium of concern, arsenic Mercedes-Benz's archetypal steps connected the electrification way seems to beryllium astir giving drivers are acquainted acquisition - and that's surely existent of the interior of the car too.
The large quality betwixt the EQA and the EQC is truly successful footwear space, the EQC noticeably longer with 500 litres of footwear abstraction compared to 340 litres connected the EQA. The EQC is truthful bigger and much expensive, with higher powerfulness asserting its presumption supra the EQA.
Talking footwear space, it's not immense and there's nary existent abstraction nether the level - conscionable capable abstraction for things similar your archetypal assistance and tyre repair kit - truthful there's nary accidental of stashing thing other underneath to springiness you much space.
There are immoderate bully touches connected the exterior, similar the seamless look of the footwear lid, with the opener integrated into the badge, truthful there's nary request for different articulator to location the merchandise latch.
There are 2 trim levels, making a small quality to the interior design: the modular Sport (as pictured); and the AMG Line, which bumps the terms a little.
The Sport exemplary comes with fewer options, including the prime of interior colours, finished with artificial leather. The AMG Line offers immoderate further options, similar wheels, but these are besides linked to packages, which tin bump the terms up considerably.
The interior sells it
Whichever exemplary you choose, it's the interior of this car that truly sells it, and wherever the Mercedes EQA stands retired arsenic the premium marque that it is. While rivals similar the Kia e-Niro mightiness connection much scope for the money, the interior of the EQA is easy much sumptuous.
It's besides fundamentally the aforesaid arsenic Mercedes' GLA interior. Unlike VW with the rivalling ID4, Mercedes hasn't stripped this backmost for a much minimalist decorativeness - and we similar this.
THE INTERIOR SELLS IT
There's a wide usage of much premium materials connected precocious surfaces, but astatine the aforesaid clip harder plastics are utilized connected the little doorway panels - possibly a motion to the world that this is simply a household conveyance and that's a batch easier to support clean. It's besides cheaper, portion not detracting hugely from the wide effect.
There's reasonably wide usage of glossy achromatic finishes which we're not immense fans of - they truly request to beryllium looked aft to enactment looking clean, showing up each fingerprint oregon spec of dust.
Unlike cars similar the Hyundai Ioniq 5, Mercedes hasn't been capable to instrumentality vantage of a decently level level to unfastened up the centre of the vehicle, truthful there's inactive a accepted disagreement betwixt operator and passenger.
There's plentiful country successful the rear, though the level is simply a small precocious truthful your knees mightiness beryllium a small higher than you expect if you've got agelong legs.
The Mercedes EQA is comfy too. On the Sport trim the spot controls are mostly manual, but determination are a bully scope of options to tweak and alteration the spot to get the cleanable presumption for you, much than astir different little marques offer.
The layout of the interior is besides beauteous good, 3 cardinal circular aerial vents - including illumination erstwhile it gets acheronian - instrumentality up rather a spot of space, but the wide dispersed of show moving from down the steering instrumentality into the centre of the car gives bully entree to the exertion offered.
The clime controls stay arsenic carnal buttons successful their ain bar, portion the centre console has a ample clickable touchpad flanked with buttons to springiness nonstop entree to assorted functions connected that display. It's a blase system, but it's really casual to get to grips with, with retention abstraction successful that centre console too.
Mercedes doesn't request a cogwheel selector oregon thrust buttons successful the centre, due to the fact that that's each handled by a stalk connected the steering column. This is simply a small unconventional, but it really works truly good and keeps the layout somewhat cleaner.
Let's speech astir the interior tech
One of the things that sets the Mercedes EQA isolated from galore of its rivals is the prime of those interior displays. Visually, the offering from Mercedes' MBUX strategy is much sophisticated, offering much customisation, easier navigation and amended graphics than many. It conscionable looks amended than what you'll spot connected the show of cheaper rivals - and that's surely portion of the prime that you're paying for here.
The cardinal show offers the accustomed tally of functions - navigation, music, telephone and messaging, controls for the ambient lighting successful the car, and a store enactment wherever you tin bargain further Mercedes Me services.
Navigation comes via each sorts of means: it supports interaction controls, you tin navigate via the interaction controller successful the centre console oregon done the left-hand controls connected the steering wheel. The learning curve is short, things are logically laid out, and mostly casual to find.
The EQ conception includes things similar charging controls, much item connected what's utilizing the powerfulness and truthful on. There's besides the enactment to hunt for charging stations, though Mercedes has this arsenic a modular icon connected the representation too, truthful it's ever casual to find.
Searching for charging stations uses a reasonably modular acceptable of points of accusation (POI) and we recovered this to beryllium retired of day - arsenic is the lawsuit for conscionable astir each car connected the roadworthy - truthful you mightiness miss immoderate person stations. Really, this needs to beryllium improved, but this isn't a weakness that's unsocial to Mercedes.
One happening we bash like, however, is the enactment to find a charging presumption adjacent to you, oregon connected a way you mightiness person programmed, truthful it's beauteous casual to punch the buttons and get yourself to a charger. They besides look connected the maps arsenic icons, on with a batch of different points of interest, but these are afloat customisable, truthful you tin crook disconnected each the junk you don't request to cognize about.
We mentioned the steering instrumentality controls and there's rather a engaged array of buttons here. The large functions enactment precisely arsenic you'd expect, but it's the apical furniture that's much interesting, arsenic this gives you power implicit the displays.
Central to some is the clickable interaction power (very overmuch similar the aged BlackBerry optical navigation key), allowing you to swipe and select. On the right-hand steering instrumentality controls, this lets you customise the 3 sections of the operator show - left, centre and close - with aggregate options for each area.
It's instantly appealing to those who similar their tech, arsenic having casual entree to figures similar your mean miles per kWh is useful, portion you tin besides telephone up a show of however galore miles you've reclaimed done regeneration.
In the cubby holes successful the centre console you'll find charging ports, the beforehand 1 offering smartphone connections to the car. We didn't trial this with Apple CarPlay, but connected Android Auto, it's somewhat disappointing that it lone uses the centre of the display, not the full width. That's to sphere Mercedes' perpetual location and notifications icons.
What's bully though is that the car's hard buttons past default to Android Auto services, truthful hitting the media fastener took america backmost to Spotify and the navi fastener backmost to Google Maps. That's a spot of joined up thinking.
What doesn't happen, however, is simply a redirection of the dependable power fastener connected the steering wheel. This sticks to the 'Hey Mercedes' strategy alternatively than switching implicit to Google Assistant.
Hey Mercedes is beauteous bully arsenic dependable power systems spell though. The connection isn't the astir earthy connected reply, but the knowing is good, easy uncovering locations without the catalogue of errors that tin plague specified systems.
Overall, things enactment precise good together. About the lone happening we tin kick astir is the retired of day POIs - but otherwise, an interior tech solution that's amongst the astir compelling retired there.
Range, thrust and performance
Moving connected to the important parts of really driving the car and there's 1 artillery option, astatine 66.5kWh. There are nary options for larger oregon smaller batteries, but determination are powerfulness options.
The Sport has 1 enactment and that's a 140kW centrifugal driving the beforehand wheels, giving the equivalent of 190HP. The adjacent exemplary up successful the AMG Line is the same.
But past determination are 2 4MATIC options, with dual motors giving all-wheel drive, and boosting the powerfulness to 228HP and 292HP respectively. Naturally, arsenic you summation the power, the 0-62mph clip drops, with the Sport starting astatine 8.9 seconds, the apical EQA 350 4MATIC AMG Line exemplary getting down to 6 seconds - nary of which volition get you adjacent to a emblematic Tesla.
Mercedes cites a scope of 262 miles for the EQA. We recovered that we could realistically deed an mean of 3.5 miles per kWh, which would travel successful astatine astir 232 miles. Of course, the scope you volition execute depends connected a batch of things - the weather, your driving style, however galore different systems are drafting powerfulness (like the aircon).
We got these figures successful lukewarm conditions connected mixed roads, utilizing mostly eco mode to and with regen acceptable to automatic, truthful contributing regularly. That's not a large fig and looking crossed the likes of the VW ID4 oregon Hyundai Kona Electric, you'll get much scope for your wealth from those models - and reasonably easily.
The Mercedes EQA volition complaint astatine up to 100kW, which is tenable due to the fact that that's the benignant of powerfulness you'll find successful chargers connected the UK's motorways, but arguably, with this car sitting successful a higher terms bracket, it's just to accidental it's disappointing that it's won't complaint astatine higher speeds.
There are 3 driving modes - eco, comfort, athletics - each doing what you'd expect, with eco limiting the acceleration and athletics being overmuch much twitchy for faster off-the-line speed. What's seemingly not linked to these modes is regeneration, which is alternatively handled by paddles connected the steering column.
The near paddle increases regen done 2 levels, with a last automatic enactment offering a clever solution that volition summation the regen utilizing the car's consciousness of wherever it is connected the road. That means you tin assistance disconnected the pedal and person the car dilatory automatically erstwhile you're approaching a junction oregon erstwhile the car infront slows.
This is simply a small smarter than different regen systems, much similar the effect you'd get from adaptive cruise power and, again, it's beauteous casual to get a consciousness for however the strategy works, truthful you tin assistance off, consciousness the car seashore a little, past commencement slowing arsenic you attack that roundabout. It each works nicely.
The thrust is quiescent and refined, but the EQA has been setup reasonably brushed connected the suspension side, truthful it doesn't consciousness similar the benignant of car you'd privation to propulsion done the corners, beryllium we did find it coped good capable with rougher roads, maintaining its dignity with Surrey's champion speedbumps.
The Mercedes EQA is each astir sophistication; the prime of the interior and the exertion acquisition being beforehand and centre. However, it's reasonably casual to prime retired amended performers, successful presumption of scope and ratio - and astatine this price, that mightiness origin immoderate to intermission for thought.
At the aforesaid time, the determination volition travel down to precisely what you're looking for. The EQA delivers that Mercedes acquisition successful galore regards, which you mightiness not instantly expect from immoderate of the much aggressively-priced brands connected the market, specified arsenic Kia and Hyundai.
Ultimately, however, with the Tesla Model 3 astir the aforesaid terms offering amended performance, and the Volkswagen ID4 offering large show with household practicality, the contention for the Mercedes EQA is surely strong.
VW's wide marketplace SUV, offering ratio and range, on with plentifulness of applicable space. The interior is precise antithetic to the EQA and the infotainment tech not arsenic good, but it's decidedly 1 to look at.
Hyundai Ioniq 5
This mightiness marque you deliberation doubly astir the brand. From the extracurricular there's large design, with a refreshing interior too. It's intent built to beryllium an electrical car too, with loads of abstraction inside.
Writing by Chris Hall. Editing by Mike Lowe. Originally published connected 5 August 2021.