The ‘EQ’ Platform Is What Will Determine Mercedes’s Future

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Mercedes have so far been on the sidelines of the electric car revolution, waiting for the market to turn in a decisive direction before committing any significant resources to it. There were a couple of concept cars and the company was obviously working on getting its R&D up to scratch but a real consumer-facing effort was missing like of the scale BMW had already put out.

Now, at the Paris Motor Show, Mercedes has announced a new platform dedicated to electric cars called ‘EQ’. The acronym apparently stands for Electric Intelligence and is initially going to launch with an all wheel drive, all-electric SUV, however, Mercedes says that the underlying platform is versatile enough to be used on sedans, saloons, coupes, and other models as well.

The styling of the car screams ‘electric’ seeing how it is fitted with LED’s inside and outside, in fact, the whole styling of this platform seems to be a digression from the direction Mercedes has been going in over the last few years. The outlines are smooth, flowing and aerodynamic in nature while continuing the current trend of masking door handles and other visible lines for a clean look.

More important than the actual vehicle though is what this represents for Mercedes as a company. Representatives said that this platform will be built on the four pillars central to future cars. These include ‘Connected, Autonomous, Shared, Electric’.

The most interesting of these is the ‘shared’ part since this is the general direction cars seem to be going in. If car ownership itself starts to become redundant as it is expected to a few decades down the line, then survival for companies like Mercedes is going to be very different from what it is now.

The EQ class of cars will have two electric motors, one per axle and should be able to last for 310 miles per charge. There will be fast charging solutions built in as well, although Mercedes declined to mention more specifics about them.

While electric cars have the advantage of complete torque from the get go and so race off the starting line, Mercedes are going to make sure that its cars have that extra oomph when it comes to performance.

The car still has a steering wheel in the concept that Mercedes unveiled which is different to what Ford and Google are planning, and even though, it currently seems like Mercedes are going to concentrate on Level 3 Autonomous capabilities, Level 4 or complete autonomy will also likely be implementable on this platform of cars.

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