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The interior of the EQC is quiet. Well, it would be if the rain would let up. But the whir of electric motors has all but been eliminated from the cabin. Mercedes actually created subframes to detach the powerplants from the main body of the car. The automaker might have built an electric SUV in the EQC 400 4Matic, but first, it made sure it built a luxury vehicle worthy of its three-pronged star logo.
In the Norway countryside last week, I drove the first real electric vehicle under the Mercedes brand. The Smart sub-brand might have been electrified years ago, but to be honest the FourTwo EVs were a far cry from the type of luxury we've come to expect from the company. Plus, Smart is being phased out in the US so a Benz with a battery will soon be the only Merc you can get stateside.
While driving a few variants of the EQC 400, I encountered the luxury I've come to expect from Mercedes-Benz. In addition to a quiet cabin, the cloth and leather seats were plush. The round vents have been replaced with vertical airways accented in rose gold. China is a huge market for EVs and the country's obsession with the color is well documented. But I was told that the color (which also appears throughout the interior) is a nod to the copper wire found in electric motors. Whatever the reason, it works.
As expected, Mercedes' amazing MBUX infotainment system is on display here. It has an additional EQ feature for electric cars, and the voice assistant has been updated accordingly. For instance, you can say "Hey Mercedes" to ask about range or to prep the battery for a charge. But the system has also been tweaked to make sure you get to your destination.
The most important addition to MBUX in the EQC is the ability to find charging locations along a route, both in the car and through the companion iOS/Android app. The system will give you both the drive and charging time along your path, but the app makes it particularly easy to adjust the amount of battery you feel comfortable having as you reach each station. It'll let you get down to 10 percent before hooking up to the grid, but if you'd rather have a bit more buffer, you can change it to, say, 20 percent. You know, for piece of mind.
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COMMENTS VIA TWITTER
The Mercedes all-electric EQC is luxury first, EV second https://t.co/QHAmZuG9Hj via @Engadget https://t.co/WKu7JU5fRq
The Mercedes all-electric EQC is luxury first, EV second Fortunately, the two go together quite nicely. https://t.co/hODFJS9SuS
The #EQC400 isn't just a new SUV from @MercedesBenz it's the start of a completely new line of #electriccars from… https://t.co/Xe2HYgDHhJ
2020 Mercedes-Benz EQC SUV First Drive: Luxury EV in motion https://t.co/sXtobH1plk via @slashgear