In a class of teardrop-shaped electric crossovers, the Mercedes-Benz EQB stands out as refreshingly different—for its upright, more boxy profile.
Even though it’s about the same size on the outside as the Tesla Model Y, Ford Mustang Mach-E, Hyundai Ioniq 5, or VW ID.4, it can feel more spacious inside. And like only the Model Y, it offers available third-row seats to fit up to seven—in a parking space that might be called compact by American standards.
The 2024 model year will only be the EQB’s third, but Mercedes already has a decent list of updates ready for this model, which it outlined Thursday. Don’t expect a lot more range, or faster charging, but the EQB looks poised to become an even more charming, useful small electric crossover for daily family use.
The EQB remains primarily offered in two all-wheel-drive versions for the U.S. The EQB 300 4Matic goes an EPA-rated 243 miles, while the EQB 350 4Matic goes 227 miles—both on a 70.5-kwh battery pack. Mercedes says that the 2024 EQB may get more efficiency and range, but that’s pointing to some new efficiency aids that have been added to the interface.
The two have the same motor hardware (permanent-magnet in front, induction in back), but the latter is software enabled for higher performance. The setup produces 225 hp and 288 lb-ft of torque in the EQB 300 and 288 hp and 384 lb-ft in the EQB 350. A base, single-motor, front-wheel-drive EQB 250+ model was due to arrive with those other versions, but we’re awaiting confirmation from Mercedes that deliveries were made.
On the charging front, the EQB is now Plug & Charge compatible—meaning that owners can simply plug in at enabled charge points and the network will be able to identify the vehicle and its corresponding billing information. Charging itself doesn’t appear to have been improved however. The peak rate remains listed at 100 kw, but the modest size of the battery pack allows a 10-80% charge in 31 minutes. The 9.6-kw onboard charger in U.S. models makes a full overnight charge well within reach for the most common home Level 2 setup with a 50-amp circuit and 40-amp charging.
Some of the trims and textures have been changed—most notably at the front end, where the look steps a bit farther away from a traditional framed-in grille. Instead, a black-panel grille with star pattern spans between headlight enclosures and features black stars standard or chrome stars for the Electric Art and AMG Line versions. The bumper area is resculpted, with some of its trim in high-gloss black, and a light band now connects the daytime running lamps. Some of that star-patterning continues inside, but a new steering wheel design is probably the most noteworthy change. Ten-color ambient lighting is now included.
The larger 10.3-inch infotainment screen is now included in all EQB models, and includes wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity. The EQB’s interface itself also gets a refresh, with an updated generation of the MBUX interface and the addition of display styles (subtle, sporty, and classic). As before, Mercedes says that the latest, so-called zero-layer interface doesn’t require scrolling through menus.
There are also now two additional acoustic experiences—enabling a total of four—that can be purchased by those also getting the Burmester surround sound system. These bring interactive sounds reacting to parameters like accelerator position, speed, and regenerative braking.
Additionally, there’s a new multipurpose camera to help support safety systems, and that rearview camera has been upgraded. The parking assistant, with its corresponding 360-degree camera view, “can be operated more intuitively and quickly” thanks to the way it’s incorporated into the MBUX interface, the company says.
Including the $1,150 destination fee, the 2023 EQB 300 4Matic started at $58,050. Pricing and more feature and spec details are due in the near future—perhaps along with some corresponding pricing adjustments. Mercedes says that the 2024 EQB will arrive at U.S. dealerships in the first half of 2024.
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