The flurry of EQ-branded Mercedes-Benz electric vehicles is underway, and the latest model to debut is a tiny, three-row crossover called the EQB. The 2022 Mercedes-Benz EQB just made its debut at the Shanghai Auto Show, following a series of rumors and teasers. As with the other EQ models revealed recently, the EQB is based on an existing gas-powered Mercedes model, in this case, the GLB.
Unlike the similar Mercedes EQA, the EQB is slated to arrive in the United States, albeit with a slightly different battery, power, and range figures. With the unique attributes the EQB borrows from its GLB sibling, this little electric crossover looks poised to add a unique flavor to the ever-growing electric crossover market.
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The Mercedes design team clearly didn't want to stray too far from the GLB's design, but they wanted to give the EQB a distinct flavor. Upfront, the EQB adopts the same black panel found on other EQ models in favor of a traditional grille. A fiber-optic light strip runs above the grille, connecting the headlights and giving the EQB a unique signature. Those LED headlights are different than the GLB's, losing the boxy square shape in exchange for a sleeker design.
The EQB further differentiates itself at the rear with a connected taillight bar. Unique wheels measuring up to 20-inches cap off the EQB's electric transformation. Mercedes will offer rose gold and blue wheel options as a not-so-subtle nod to this vehicle's electric drivetrain.
Unlike the exterior, the EQB's interior remains remarkably true to the GLB. Rather than opt for a massive Hyperscreen or an all-touch system like the latest C-Class, the EQB uses the same infotainment setup found in its gas-powered counterpart. Twin 12.3-inch touchscreens still look pretty futuristic, but not as tech-forward as the recently-revealed EQS. The only noticeable changes in the front row are some rose gold accents on the air vents and matching rose gold trim and seat fabric.
As for practicality, the EQB is a bit like the Dr. Who Tardis, larger on the inside than it looks on the outside. Though it only measures 184.4 inches long, the EQB can accommodate up to seven passengers with an optional third row. Cargo capacity is slightly smaller than the GLB.
We don't know too much detail about the GLB's electric powertrain. The German automaker says front-wheel-drive and all-wheel-drive versions are planned with various outputs, some exceeding 268 horsepower. Mercedes targets 66.5 kWh of usable battery capacity, yielding 260 miles of range on the WLTP test cycle. On the EPA cycle, this might amount to around 228 miles. A long-range version will arrive later on.
The European EQB will launch in 2021, with the US-spec version arriving next year in 2022. We expect the output figures, range, and battery size to vary from the Chinese and European-spec versions.
Seeing as the 2022 EQB was just revealed for the Chinese market, it will be a while before US pricing information becomes available, likely closer to the car's local launch next year. The EQB will face competition from the Audi Q4 e-tron, Tesla Model Y, and Volvo XC40 Recharge when it arrives. Of these rivals, only the Model Y offers a third row.
Based on first appearances, the EQB may have what it takes to fend off the Audi and Volvo, though outmatching Tesla's range and power is unlikely. The EQB is larger and more practical than its European competitors, though it's less powerful than the Volvo. Whether or not it's competitive will likely boil down to price, power, and EPA-rated range.
The most popular competitors of 2022 Mercedes-Benz EQB SUV: