DCarmaker Mercedes-Benz’s vision for an efficient electric car with record range has passed the practical test. The “Vision EQXX” prototype presented at the beginning of the year covered a distance of more than 1000 kilometers in one test ride on a single battery charge. The research car is the most efficient Mercedes ever built, CEO Ola Källenius said on Thursday. “The technology program behind it marks a milestone in the development of electric vehicles.” Development manager Markus Schäfer spoke of a “blueprint for the future of automotive engineering” which should find its way into production models within two or three years.
Along with high prices and a lack of charging options, concerns about insufficient range still prevent many consumers from switching to zero-emission electric cars. Several companies are working on solutions. The American startup Our Next Energy tested its battery with a Tesla Model S in December and obtained a distance of 1210 kilometers. Chinese electric car maker Nio promises 1,000 kilometers per battery charge for its ET7 series model. According to an overview of the comparison portal Carwow, the Mercedes EQS luxury sedan has the longest range of up to 768 kilometers among currently common electric cars, followed by the Tesla Model S Long Range with up to 652 kilometers. According to Schäfer, Mercedes-Benz was the first automaker to handle ultra-long distance at low temperatures and an average speed of 90 kilometers per hour.
it depends on the weight of the battery
But the course record is less important than low power consumption, the development manager pointed out. Because traveling long distances with big, heavy batteries is not an art. The average consumption with half a ton of relatively light batteries was 8.7 kilowatt hours (kWh) per 100 kilometers on the eleven and a half hour journey from Sindelfingen through the Alps to the Côte d’Azur. Applied to combustion engines, this would represent a consumption of around one litre. According to mobility service provider DKV, electric cars currently require an average of 15 kWh per 100 kilometers. According to Schäfer, heavy Mercedes premium models consume a good 20 kWh on the road. In series, it should go down “towards ten”.
The vehicle sets standards for fuel efficiency through improved battery technology, the use of lightweight materials, low rolling resistance tires and “the best aerodynamics in the world”, explained Mercedes- Benz. It was invented in a record time of just 18 months – compared to 40 months for major model types. “We want to be in a new development cycle,” Schäfer said. “The formula is speed.”