What is it? This subcompact hatchback is the first all-electric car that Mercedes-Benz has released in the United States. The company says it can go about 115 miles between charges and that hooking up to a 240-volt charger will put 60-miles of range back into the battery pack in about two hours. It’s unclear how long a full charge will take.
The front-wheel-drive B-Class is powered by a 100-kW electric motor that delivers 134 horsepower and 228 lbs.-ft. of torque, which Mercedes says is roughly the equivalent of a 3.0-liter gas engine. Mercedes claims this will briskly propel the hatch from 0-60 mph in less than 10 seconds.
The company says the B-Class will also uphold its role as a luxury vehicle, with a quiet, well-equipped, and roomy cabin. Plus, it will include a suite of advanced safety and convenience features, including a collision-warning system with adaptive brake assist and active park assist, which can parallel park the car for you.
The ED is the only B-Class model slated to come to the United States.
What’s new or notable? B-Class drivers will be able to remotely check on various functions of the car with a smart phone or computer. For starters, you’ll be able to see the battery’s state of charge, the vehicle’s range on a map, and a planned route that shows potential recharging points along the way. You’ll also be able to set up timing for pre-heating or cooling the interior.
CR’s take: A range of 115 miles sounds impressive, but as we’ve found in our EV testing, that “ideal” figure can change quickly in real-world conditions. We’ll let you know what we find when we test it.
When will it be available? Early 2014.