When it comes to implementing technological advances or unprecedented innovations within the automobile industry, most manufacturers choose to introduce them first in their largest and most expensive models, because due to their higher price, they are easier to monetize. The best example is found in Tesla, which spent five years manufacturing the Model S (2012) before jumping into the pool with the more affordable Model 3 (2017).
However, Mercedes-Benz has decided to follow a different strategy. And it is that although the new EQE (2021) and EQS (2021) are two of the most advanced electric saloons on the scene, the true revolution within the star firm will come from the hand of the next generation of the CLA compact sedan (2024 ).
This expected model will become 100% electric; In fact, it may abandon its current commercial name to adopt the EQC name, which will be obsolete next year once the production of the homonymous SUV is discontinued. This model will be indirectly replaced by the EQB and EQE SUV, with which it overlaps.
The new electric CLA or EQC will be straddling segments C (compact) and D (medium); not in vain, the current CLA and C-Class measure practically the same, which is why Mercedes-Benz would have decided to rationalize its offer and eliminate duplicities. Thus, it is very likely that there will be no thermal CLA, while the C-Class will not have electric versions.
The electric Mercedes-Benz CLA will be based on the MMA platform
The new model will fall within the Entry Luxury family (remember that the Mercedes-Benz lineup will be made up of three sub-ranges in the coming years: Entry Luxury or access models, Core Luxury or intermediate models, and Top-End Luxury or flagships), whose members will be based on the MMA modular platform.
This architecture will be characterized, among other things, by having an 800-volt electrical system, an advance that is currently not available in any other manufacturer’s model. This should allow him to charge at very high powers, regaining 80% of his range in under 20 minutes.
The electric Mercedes-Benz CLA or EQC will be based on the Vision EQXX, a striking prototype with a drag coefficient of 0.17 that was recently able to complete a journey of more than 1,200 km on a single charge. It would not be ruled out that its production version improves the coefficient of 0.20 that the EQS boasts.
According to a previous report, the final model will have a range of between 650 and 850 km WLTP, depending on the version. Therefore, it will outperform the EQE (631 km WLTP) and EQS (756 km WLTP). The access variants will have LFP (lithium iron phosphate) batteries. In any case, its outstanding range will be achieved thanks to high efficiency, since in no case will it have a pack of more than 100 kWh.
Thus, internal sources indicate that its consumption will be extremely low, around 10 kWh/100 km (remember that the Vision EQXX registered an average of 8.7 kWh/100 real km on a trip from Sindelfingen to Cassis). Compared to the 107.8 kWh batteries used in the EQS and EQS SUV, those of the prototype have a 50% smaller volume and are 30% lighter.
The self-developed drive unit (eATS) will offer an efficiency of 95%, compared to 80-85% typical of other electric models. In addition, Mercedes-Benz plans to use large castings in the chassis to reduce weight and cost. Finally, we cannot fail to mention that it will also be in charge of launching the new MB.OS operating system .ac