The issue with that is that while the I-Pace shares a similar recharge time (despite accepting a lower 100kW maximum charge rate), Audi’s upcoming e-tron promises to recharge at 150kW and slash 10 minutes from the EQC 400’s charging time to 80% capacity.
There is a 7.4kW on-board charger, too, and the battery is mounted inside a purpose-built cradle, with deformation zones inside and outside the cradle.
It shuts down the battery in multiple stages after a crash, with the high-voltage system switching off automatically, either reversibly or irreversibly, depending on the crash severity. It also has shutdown points for emergency-services teams.
The lithium-ion battery, built by Daimler’s Accumotive factory, delivers 384 cells in the floor, filling the space between the EQC 400’s axles. The modular battery has two modules with 48 cells each, plus four with 72 cells each, with 408V and a 210 Amp-hour capacity.
Besides its mass, the EQC 400 is fighting Mercedes-Benz’s history of entering new market segments, which hasn’t been a strength of the brand, which traditionally tries to dominate by running before it can walk. For suggestions of this, see the original A-and B-Classes, the original 190E and the smart fortwo, forfour and roadster.
Benz built more than 200 prototypes, chewing through millions of kilometres of testing, covering more than 500 standard individual tests.
- The EQC will go on sale in Europe in late 2019, and will reach SA’s shores in mid-2020.