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The one people in America will buy: The 2023 Mercedes-Benz EQS SUV

A silver Mercedes EQS SUV on a dirt road between some colorful bushes and trees

Enlarge / After the sedan came the SUV: the 2023 Mercedes-Benz EQS SUV. (credit: Jonathan Gitlin)

DENVER, Colo.—Mercedes-Benz isn’t really hanging around when it comes to new electric vehicles, all launched under the new Mercedes-EQ sub-brand. It has electrified its popular little crossover, the GLB, to create the EQB, which does everything the gas-powered car does, but much more efficiently. But it has also built an entirely new EV-specific platform called EVA2, for larger, more premium Mercedes EVs. The first of those hit the road last year—its flagship EQS sedan—followed by a slightly smaller, slightly cheaper follow-up called the EQE sedan.

But big sedans don’t sell anything like the way they used to, particularly here in North America. No, Americans want SUVs, particularly if they’re looking for a big luxury one, as determined by the sheer number of Mercedes GLSes I see when I visit California. Mercedes is wise to this, and EVA2 is designed to make SUVs as well as sedans—as is the case with this, the 2023 EQS SUV. In fact, so confident is Mercedes of US market sales for the EQS SUV, it even builds them in Alabama so they don’t have to be imported.

Mercedes’ first big electric SUV comes to America in three flavors, each with an identical 107.8 kWh usable battery capacity. The $104,400 EQS 450+ SUV features a single rear-mounted, permanently excited synchronous motor, outputting 355 hp (265 kW) and 419 lb-ft (568 Nm) of torque. This is also the longest-legged EQS SUV, using its 107.8 kWh to travel 305 miles (490 km) thanks to a very slippery drag coefficient—for an SUV—of just 0.26. Unfortunately, it didn’t have any of these variants in Denver for us to drive.

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