by Karl Furlong
When Mercedes-Benz debuted the W211 E55 AMG sedan in 2002 with its bellowing V8 engine, it was billed as the quickest production sedan in the world. Two decades later, much has changed. This is the first AMG EQE, essentially an electric version of a modern AMG-badged E-Class, and while it has no V8, it's much quicker than that groundbreaking E55.
The AMG EQE is a high-performance derivative of the previously revealed EQE electric sedan, and right now, BMW and Audi have no direct alternatives. While that E55 obliterated its rivals in a straight line, the new AMG EQE will have to prove itself against Tesla (this car fits in somewhere between a Model 3 and Model S), while also convincing AMG fans that you don't need a thunderous V8 under the hood - or any ICE powerplant at all, for that matter - to have fun.
See trim levels and configurations:
|AMG EQE 53 4MATIC+||
The 2023 Mercedes-AMG EQE's release date in the USA is scheduled for sometime early in 2023. The AMG EQE will, therefore, likely be coming out before the BMW i5.
At the time of writing, the 2023 Mercedes-AMG EQE's MSRP had not yet been revealed. However, we expect this car to comfortably head into six-figure territory.
Although there isn't a fully electric version of the Audi A6 or BMW 5 Series (yet), there are a few other electric sedans that are likely to be cross-shopped with the AMG EQE. These include everything from the smaller and cheaper BMW i4 M50 to the bigger Tesla Model S, be it the dual-motor model or the incredibly quick tri-motor Plaid. The Audi RS e-tron GT is another swift EV that may find favor with buyers considering the AMG EQE.
The new Mercedes-AMG EQE sedan looks a lot like the bigger EQS with a similar egg-shaped profile and a smooth body that has been optimized for aerodynamics. It's attractive, modern, and more aggressive with its AMG touches, but perhaps not unique enough from its larger sibling. In front, there's an AMG-specific black panel grille with vertical struts in chrome, along with digital light headlamps.
The tires are wrapped around aerodynamically-optimized light-alloy wheels measuring 20 inches, but 21-inch wheels are available. With the optional AMG Night package, there are additional black chrome elements and red brake calipers.
At the back, there is an aerodynamically-optimized diffuser and a large rear spoiler. Overall, the Mercedes-AMG EQE's exterior design is nice but it won't bowl you over either.
Closer in size to a Tesla Model S than a Model 3, the new Mercedes-AMG EQE's dimensions are typical of a midsize sedan. It has a length of 195 inches, a width of 75 inches, and a height of 58 inches. However, Mercedes does specify that US-specific measurements will be announced closer to the car's launch.
At present, curb weight figures have not been announced.
Unlike previous E-Class-sized AMGs, the Mercedes-AMG EQE has no engine. Instead, two permanently excited synchronous electric motors - one on each axle - power the AMG EQE. A variable all-wheel-drive AMG performance 4MATIC+ system is standard. By default, the powertrain generates 617 horsepower and 701 lb-ft of torque. However, with the AMG Dynamic Plus package, those outputs increase to 677 hp and 738 lb-ft. As expected, acceleration is dramatic. The 0-60 mph run is completed in 3.4 seconds (3.2 with the aforementioned package) and the top speed is 137 mph (or 149 mph). Mercedes says that a minimum state of charge of 70% is required to achieve these acceleration times.
In Europe, a less powerful EQE 43 4MATIC will be sold as well, but US customers will only get the more powerful EQE 53 4MATIC+ with the outputs mentioned above. However, Mercedes confirmed the model will simply be called AMG EQE in the US.
The Audi RS e-tron GT is a little quicker but there's not much in it - this EV needs only 3.1 seconds for the benchmark sprint. As for Tesla, the base Model S also takes 3.1 seconds, but the Plaid is leagues ahead with a 0-60 mph time of under two seconds.
Like other AMGs, the Mercedes-AMG EQE has been enhanced in many other ways to extract maximum performance and enjoyment from the sedan. It comes with an AMG sound experience using special speakers that emit different sounds based on the driving modes and other parameters. Rear-axle steering is standard, there's a high-performance braking system with six-piston calipers, and there's an enhanced Race Start boost function with the AMG Dynamic Plus package.
If gas-guzzling V8s with ridiculous mpg specs put you off before, the AMG EQE should be easier to stomach. The new 90.6-kWh battery supports up to 170 kW fast charging with direct current. Based on the WLTP standard, 112 miles of range can be added in only 15 minutes. The car has a provisional total range of between 444-518 miles based on the WLTP cycle.
The 11-kW onboard charger (a 22-kW onboard charger is optional) allows for convenient home charging or charging at public charging stations with alternating current. Over-the-air updates for the battery management system can improve efficiency over the life of the vehicle.
AMG's usual sporty enhancements are visible everywhere inside the cabin. The Mercedes-AMG EQE's interior colors are predominantly dark, but multicolor ambient lighting brightens it up nicely. The instrument panel and beltlines are finished in Space Grey MB-Tex with Red topstitching, there's an AMG Performance flat-bottom steering wheel in Nappa leather, and black microfiber trim. For an added cost, the Mercedes-AMG EQE's seats can be upholstered in Nappa leather.
Dominating the interior is the optional MBUX Hyperscreen which spans the entire width of the dashboard and consists of three screens. It's a dazzling layout although the jury is still out on whether this giant touchscreen is easier to use than more traditional controls. In the second row, we expect a little less space than in the EQS. Second-row headroom may be impacted by the sloping roofline but we'll need to climb inside the AMG EQE to determine if this is the case.
As expected for a modern Mercedes EV, the car is packed with advanced driver-assist technologies. Navigation with Electric Assistance is one of them. This system plans the fastest route, taking into account charging stations along the way, and calculations are made on whether charging is necessary or not based on distance covered and the availability of charging stations. The AMG Track Pace MBUX app is a virtual race engineer that records lap times and much more; it's an odd addition in a luxury car like this, but this is still an AMG after all.
At just over 15 cubic feet, the Mercedes-AMG EQE's cargo space is sufficient for daily duties and four people should be able to squeeze in their bags for a weekend trip away.
The most popular competitors of 2023 Mercedes-AMG EQE: