Mercedes-Benz has turned its EQE electric sedan into an SUV, and it’s called the… EQE SUV.
Simple name, then. But the EQE SUV has a complicated job in Australia, taking on everything from the BMW iX, Audi Q8 e-tron, and Kia EV9 electric crossovers, to the petrol and diesel BMW X5, Audi Q7, and Mercedes-Benz GLE.
This is the Mercedes-Benz family SUV of the future. Is it any good?
The EQE SUV range sits (very) slightly above the base petrol GLE 450 ($133,670) on price.
It very slightly undercuts the BMW iX xDrive 40 ($135,900), although the Beemer is all-wheel drive as standard, and is meaningfully cheaper than the Audi Q8 e-tron 55 quattro ($153,900).
Mercedes-Benz EQE SUV pricing:
- 2024 Mercedes-Benz EQE 300 SUV: $134,900
- 2024 Mercedes-Benz EQE 350 4MATIC SUV: $144,900
- 2024 Mercedes-Benz EQE 500 4MATIC SUV: $164,900
- 2024 Mercedes-AMG EQE 53 4MATIC+ SUV: $189,900
All prices exclude on-road costs
Like any new Mercedes-Benz, the cabin of the EQE SUV is a high-tech showcase.
With ambient lighting running the width of the dashboard bleeding into the doors, two high-resolution screens, and plenty of expensive-looking chrome and wooden bits, it’s easy to see plenty of people being sold on the EQE from the second they pull the driver’s door shut in the showroom.
Behind the high-tech tinsel, the fundamentals are solid. The driving position is excellent, the view out of the tall windows is panoramic, and the leather trim feels suitably high-end given the starting price.
With all of that said though, there are parts of this cabin that are more concerned with looking good than feeling good.
The short-travel seat controls on the doors remain nasty, the door grabs themselves aren’t rock solid like they really should be in an expensive Benz, and the huge expanse of gloss black running down the central tunnel is a magnet for fingerprints.
There’s no questioning the effectiveness of the infotainment technology, though. The 12.8-inch screen flowing down the dashboard has graphics good enough to make an iPad jealous, and responds instantly to inputs.
Mercedes-Benz doesn’t force you to go diving through menus to do basic tasks like changing the fan, meaning you don’t feel the loss of physical buttons and switches too keenly here, and the learning curve is incredibly flat. Rival brands should take note.
If you do want to sidestep the Mercedes interface, wireless Apple CarPlay connects quickly and takes up the top two-thirds of the display. The driver’s display is similarly polished, with slick graphics and the option to show full-screen maps.
Storage spaces abound up front. There’s a decent glovebox, door pockets with space for bottles, and a massive open space beneath the central tunnel. You’ll be able to put an oversized handbag under there, although it’s not particularly well hidden from the outside world if you’re leaving the car.
If you need to charge up there’s a wireless charging pad beneath the dashboard, along with six (6!) USB-C ports up front. That’s two in the central bin, two in the open storage space beneath the central tunnel, and two in a storage bin next to the cupholders.
Rear seat space is generous, as you’d expect. There’s plenty of head room under the panoramic glass roof, and leg room is excellent behind full-sized adults.
The tall window line and panoramic roof mean it’s a light, bright place to spend time, and the seats themselves are nice and supportive.
Air vents, two more USB-C ports, and climate controls all feature back there, along with a trio of top-tether points and two ISOFIX points for child seats. The seat backs fold 40/20/40.
Claimed boot space is 520L with the rear seats in place, expanding to 1675L with the rear seats folded.
The boot itself has a large underfloor space for your charge cables, or for valuables you want to keen hidden from prying eyes.
There are four drivetrains in the EQE SUV line-up.
The single-motor rear-wheel drive EQE 300 SUV produces 180kW of power and 550Nm of torque. It has an 89kWh (usable) lithium-ion battery pack, good for a claimed range of up to 446km on the WLTP test cycle.
We saw an average energy consumption figure of 21kWh/100km on a mixed city and highway drive.
The dual-motor all-wheel drive EQE 350 4MATIC SUV produces 215kW of power and 765Nm of torque, good for a claimed 0-100km/h time of 6.3 seconds. It uses the same battery pack, and has a claimed range of 436km.
The dual-motor all-wheel drive EQE 500 4MATIC SUV produces 300kW and 858Nm, for a 0-100km/h time of 4.7 seconds. It draws on a 90.6kWh battery pack, good for a claimed range of up to 440km on the WLTP test cycle.
The dual-motor all-wheel drive EQE 53 4MATIC+ SUV produces 460kW and 950Nm, for a 0-100km/h time of 3.7 seconds or 3.5 seconds with the AMG Dynamic Plus Package. It uses the same battery as the 500, good for a claimed range of up to 380km on the WLTP test cycle.
The EQE SUV has is every bit as smooth and quiet as you’d expect.
It’s a very normal experience from behind the wheel, as if Mercedes-Benz has made every effort to make the learning curve as shallow as possible for anyone moving up from a petrol or diesel GLE.
There’s no neck-snapping burst of acceleration off the mark, just a smooth, swelling surge of torque that gets this 2385kg family SUV off the line effortlessly. It’s nearly silent, with no wind or road noise sneaking in at city speeds.
There are four levels of regenerative braking on offer; the standard option is very gentle, while the most aggressive allows you to leave the brake alone until it’s time to come to a complete stop.
Unusually, the regenerative braking system actually dips the pedal in its most aggressive mode.
Also on offer is an automatic mode, which uses navigation data and the front-facing radar to brake the car as you approach a junction, or if the car in front slows down. It’s a bit strange at first, but the system really does work.
Although it’s a big car, the EQE is easy to park in tight spaces. The surround-view camera is super high-resolution, and the light steering combines with a surprisingly small turning circle – even without rear-wheel steering – to make the EQE feel smaller than it really is.
At higher speeds, it’s nicely settled. There’s no faux sportiness here, which means the ride is nice and relaxed over big highway crests and dips, and the sound deadening is excellent.
Even on rural Australian highways there’s hardly any noise from the tyres inside, and the super-slick exterior design means there’s no wind noise from the mirrors or pillars at 100km/h.
Mercedes-Benz has some of the smoothest, smartest driver assists in the business. Even in driving rain with slick, shiny roads the active lane-centring keeps the car perfectly placed between the white lines, and there’s no phantom braking from the radar cruise control.
The system will even change lanes for you when you indicate, provided you keep your hands on the wheel to take charge if things go wrong.
So often, the driver assists in new cars cause more headaches than they solve through poor calibration. Here, the systems actually make your life easier.
EQE 300 SUV highlights:
- AMG Line exterior package
- Digital Light LED headlights
- Adaptive high-beam
- 21-inch AMG multi-spoke light-alloy wheels
- Illuminated aluminium-look running boards
- Panoramic sliding sunroof
- AMG Line interior package
- Head-up display
- 64-colour adjustable ambient lighting
- Keyless entry and start
- Power tailgate
- 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster
- 12.8-inch touchscreen infotainment system
- Satellite navigation with augmented reality
- Apple CarPlay, Android Auto
- Wireless phone charger
- Dual-zone climate control
- Leather upholstery
- Heated front seats
- Burmester 3D sound system
- Anthracite linestructure lime wood trim
- 8m domestic charging cable
- 5m public AC charging cable
EQE 350 4MATIC SUV and EQE 500 4MATIC SUV add:
AMG EQE 53 4MATIC+ SUV adds:
- Rear-axle steering
- AMG Active Ride Control air suspension
- 4MATIC+ all-wheel drive system
- Nappa leather-wrapped AMG steering wheel
- Ventilated front seats
- AMG Night Package
- 22-inch alloy wheels
- Red-painted brake calipers
- Guard 360° Vehicle Protection Plus package
There’s a selection of options available across the range.
- MBUX Hyperscreen ($6700, excl. EQE 300 SUV)
- Airmatic air suspension ($3400)
- Rear-axle steering ($2900)
The EQE 53 4MATIC+ SUV comes with the latter three features as standard while also offering an available AMG Dynamic Plus Package ($7400), which adds:
- Increased top speed (240km/h)
- ‘Performance’ AMG Sound Experience
- Race Start ‘Boost’
The Mercedes-Benz EQE SUV has yet to be tested by ANCAP or Euro NCAP.
All models come standard with the following safety equipment:
- Adaptive cruise control with stop/go
- Autonomous emergency braking (AEB)
- Vehicle, Pedestrian, Cyclist detection
- Turning manoeuvre function
- Congestion emergency braking function
- Intersection start-off function
- Blind-spot assist
- Front, rear cross-traffic assist
- Driver attention alert
- Active Steering Assist
- Lane keep assist
- Active emergency stop assist
- Safe exit warning
- Speed limit assist
- Surround-view camera
- 10 airbags
Mercedes-Benz backs the EQE with a five-year, unlimited-kilometre warranty and provides a 10-year, 250,000km warranty for the high-voltage battery.
Servicing is required every 12 months or 15,000 kilometres, and a three-year service plan will set you back $1950 if you prepay through Mercedes-Benz. A four-year package is $3000, and a five-year package is $3555.
The EQE SUV is exactly what you’d expect from Mercedes-Benz.
Although that could be seen as a negative alongside the wild-looking and beautifully trimmed BMW iX, it’s unlikely to deter existing Mercedes-Benz SUV owners looking to make the switch to electric power.
Do you need any more than the base EQE 300? Having not driven the full range yet, it’s hard to say – but the draw of all-wheel drive, and the minimal impact it has on claimed range makes the idea of the EQE 350 4MATIC appealing.
Smooth, quiet, and refined, the EQE SUV a very nice way to haul around your family.
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