Mercedes-Benz EQS Starts High-Speed Testing

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The electric sedan's Nurburgring workout has begun.

Now that the all-new, technologically advanced 2021 Mercedes S-Class has debuted, the German automaker can concentrate on refining its fully electric counterpart, the EQS, which has the Tesla Model S, the upcoming BMW i7 and next-generation Jaguar XJ in its sights. As the development of the German automaker's flagship electric sedan continues, our spies have spotted a prototype performing some high-speed testing at the Nurburgring.

Some of the camouflage has stripped away as the heavy plastic parts hiding the design lines have been removed, giving us a clearer look at the car's curvaceous body that's heavily inspired by the concept.

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While the Mercedes EQS Vision concept shown at Geneva was a four-door sedan, the production model will be a more practical five-door hatchback. Pop-out door handles and frameless doors give the profile a clean, uncluttered look, and the prototype is fitted with production headlights and taillights. Like the S-Class, the EQS will be a technological marvel, with copious screen real estate inside the cabin. As we saw in a recent teaser video, there's also a screen mounted in the grille for the holographic headlamps.

Mercedes hasn't shown off the luxurious cabin yet, but the EQS will have as much interior space as the long-wheelbase S-Class, despite having a shorter wheelbase than its combustion-powered counterpart.

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The EQS will ride on Mercedes' latest Modular Electric Architecture, with power provided one electric motor on the front axle and another at the rear axle for all-wheel drive. In the Vision EQS, this setup produces 469 hp and 560 lb-ft of torque combined, propelling the electric sedan from 0-62 mph in 4.5 seconds. Mercedes is expected to lift the wraps off the EQS next year, but the car's chief engineer recently said it may not enter production until 2022 and go on sale for the 2023 model year.

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