The Mercedes-Benz EQC is an all-new electric crossover that’s set to do battle against the Tesla Model X, Jaguar I-Pace, and Audi e-tron.

With Tesla having the edge in technology and Jaguar exhibiting its design chops, the Mercedes needs to show off what exactly makes it different than all the rest. We’re told that in the world of luxury automobiles that standing out is what’s important, which is why Mercedes touts the tagline “The Best or Nothing.”

But what exactly is “the best” about the new EQC? The 80 kWh battery pack is among the smaller ones in the segment and is rated to get about just under 300 miles of range or 450 kilometers, based on the European testing cycles. That range isn’t bad at all, but the European cycle is notoriously more relaxed than the real-world, so expect to knock off at least 10 percent of that range, if not more.

Range and Power

If the EQC’s realistic range is about 270 miles then, that’s still not bad, considering it is being achieved with a smaller pack. Mercedes is also thinking big-picture with its production, suggesting that they will have a battery pack plant anywhere they’re building EVs, ensuring they’re in charge of their own fate and don’t have to rely on a supplier, which can cause big delays.

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The car has a total system output of 400 horsepower that’s sent to both axles, which allows for a 0-60 mph sprint of around 5 seconds, making it a smidge slower than the I-Pace and a bit faster than an Audi e-tron. Setting off from a standstill, the EQC launches off the line with a bit of hesitation, as if it is actively calculating its trajectory to the horizon. With electric motors featuring so much immediate torque, this sedation at low speeds must be a way to make the car feel smoother, or it could be a result of the direct drive transmission. The top speed of the EQC is limited to 112 MPH.

The EQC comes with fast charging capability baked in. Using a DC charging system with a CCS plug, it can power up from 10 percent to 80 percent in just 40 minutes. Using a conventional wall-box charger, it’ll take about 10 hours.

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On the Road

Although the EQC’s power and fast charge time are quite impressive, the vehicle is quite heavy. And though the battery components are located low on the chassis, which typically lowers the center of gravity and helps handling, the crossover can feel a bit cumbersome when it comes to changing directions. It definitely doesn’t feel as agile as the competition, but it’s very quiet, not just because of the fact that there’s no rumbling combustion engine, but because Mercedes has applied extra sound deadening and bushings to mitigate any noise. It still hums from the low-rolling-resistance tires, but its a fairly serene experience. Smooth and refined instead of sporty, the EQC feels like a true Mercedes in this sense.

To help spice things up a bit, the EQC features a few extra drive modes, including a maximum range feature and a sport mode. These have a tangible impact on how the throttle feels as well as how the regenerative brakes operate. Additionally, you can use the steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters to adjust between four settings of regenerative brakes to enable more regeneration or longer periods of coasting. There is also an automatic function that uses the car’s various driver assistance and safety sensors to detect how the car ahead is behaving and will adjust its regenerative braking to match it. I’ll admit that the braking feel of the EQC was never quite consistent or natural feeling to me. It seems to have a fairly high learning curve to be smooth with the brakes.

The accelerator also has a few tricks up its sleeve in the Eco and Maximum range settings, pressing back at you to provide the essential feedback regarding the impact on range. In terms of range, we didn’t experience any range anxiety while traveling around Oslo. In fact, many of the estimates about range seem to have been conservative, we’d use less of the battery when we arrived at destinations than the navigation system calculated. All those regenerative braking and go-pedal tricks seem to have a positive impact.

There’s been no official pricing for the new Mercedes-Benz EQC, but many are anticipating it to be around the same price as the Jaguar I-Pace, so we can expect it to start at around $70,000 in the U.S., or $84,000 in Canada.


For that price, you get an interesting cabin with a mix of familiar and new touches. Materials and layout are fantastic, with the usual high-end attention to detail. For example, you’ll find attractive rose gold accents and can fit the cabin with real woodgrain trim and leather upholstery. If that sounds like the opposite of environmentally friendly, you can get the MB-Tex faux leather and piano black or aluminum trim.

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The car features two very large and useful 10.25-inch screens. The central screen is the new infotainment system, powered by MBUX, which has a Google Assistant/Apple Siri/Amazon Alexa-like smart assistant that can help with more than just navigation and phone calls, but HVAC settings and trivial information about where you are. The digital gauge cluster is customizable to display the information you deem important, like navigation directions, range, a driving coach, and more. There’s also an available head-up display, in case you need even more information to look at while you drive.

One gee-whiz feature that you’ll find in the EQC is the augmented reality navigation, which uses a front-facing camera feed and overlays it with navigation information, showing you exactly which street on the left (or right) to take. This is helpful because during our test drive in Oslo, Norway, some streets were difficult to find, and sometimes the audible navigation instructions were a bit frantic as the system tried to cope with the construction zones.

ALSO SEE: 2019 Jaguar I-Pace Review

One more thing that should be discussed is the amount of cargo space. Most EVs offer front trunks in addition to rear trunks for extra practicality, but the EQC doesn’t feature a frunk at all. The rear cargo area offers about 18 cubic feet of storage (500 liters) and the rear seats fold for extra space.

As expected in a high-tech luxury vehicle, the EQC can be had with a long list of driver assistance and safety features. While the driver assistance features aren’t up to the standard of Cadillac Supercruise or Tesla’s Autopilot, it is fairly reliable and consistent, not to mention easy to use.

ALSO SEE: Jaguar I-Pace vs Tesla Model X: Which EV is Right for You?

The Verdict: 2020 Mercedes-Benz EQC 400 Review

We are finally starting to see electric vehicles as more than just appliances or cars that feel overwhelmingly digital and distant. While Tesla is recognized for its potent powerplant, and Jaguar’s EV features a fetching design, the Mercedes EQC attempts to bridge that gap, showing a vehicle with a capable powertrain and marrying that to an attractive and quiet cabin. Interested buyers can head to Mercedes dealerships to put down a deposit on the new EQC, and the cars should be on the roads sometime by late 2019 or early 2020.