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Mercedes EQA first drive | more luxurious but less spacious than rivals

"Mercedes might not have a stand-out product with the EQA, but it’s not one to be overlooked."

6 Mercedes EQA
Mercedes-Benz
BIK List Price
£48,955
Mercedes-Benz EQA BIK list price
BIK Percentage
2%
Mercedes-Benz EQA BIK Percent
CO2
N/A
Mercedes-Benz EQA CO2
Combined MPG
N/A
Mercedes-Benz EQA MPG

Review

There will soon be an electric Mercedes-Benz model in all the core segments, as the roll-out of the brand’s EQ range gains further traction. The EQA is the smallest model to date, occupying the all-important compact SUV space, but also filling in for the lack of a fully-electric A-Class hatchback.

It’s based on the GLA, rather than a bespoke platform, and the two cars share a body and interior. The only notable visual differences are found at the front and rear, where the EQA gets some tweaks to bring it in line with the rest of the EQ range.

A gloss black panel replaces the conventional radiator grille at the front, complete with a full-width LED light bar. There’s a similar treatment at the rear, with a single tail light that stretches across the boot.

The EQA is certainly an under-the-radar electric vehicle (EV). It doesn’t shout about its zero-emission capability, which may appeal to some, but, overall, it’s a little on the bland side for a premium-badge car.

Things get a lot better when you step inside. The dashboard oozes class, with a mixture of gloss black and matte silver trim pieces. It feels markedly more upmarket than rival models, if a little cramped. Herein lies the issue. By converting a car designed for an internal combustion engine (ICE) to electric, Mercedes is unable to provide the same level of interior space as cars like the VW ID4, which have long wheelbases and flat floors.

The EQA’s boot is tiny in comparison, providing just 340 litres of space against the ID4’s 543 litres. When you factor in pricing, the EQA sits among much larger models like the Audi Q4 e-tron, but struggles to provide the practicality of a much cheaper car like the VW ID3.

Prices start at £45,590 and three powertrain options are offered, all utilising the same 66.5kWh battery. The entry-level EQA 250 uses a single motor that drives the front wheels. It serves up 190PS. The EQA 300 can be had for a shade less than £50,000. It uses two motors, boosting power to 228PS and provides all-wheel drive, while range topping EQA 350 models (from £51,090) have 292PS. All variants promise around 263 miles (WLTP) of driving range and can charge from 10%-80%, using a 100kW rapid charger, in as little as 30 minutes. In
the real-world, our experience suggest that 200-225 miles is more realistic.

It may not appear to be a class leader for its range, cost or performance, but the EQA does have some very positive attributes. For example, it’s remarkably quiet on the move. There’s very little wind or road noise, which makes for a relaxing drive. Performance is good, too. Even the base 250 model feels lively, although it sometimes struggles to put its power down from rest. Grip improves on the move, thanks to the weight of the battery. There’s not a great deal of body roll, but the EQA isn’t especially dynamic.

There’s no shortage of electric options in the EQA’s segment. Drivers seeking practicality can choose from a growing number of electric VW Group models, while premium offerings include Tesla’s Model 3 and the Polestar 2 at a similar price. Mercedes might not have a stand-out product with the EQA, but it’s not one to be overlooked. It’s not the biggest or best to drive, but offers excellent refinement, good levels of equipment.

> Mercedes EQA 250 battery, charging and spec information

 

> Interested in comparing electric vehicle data? Check out our EV tool.

> Interested in ensuring the efficient use of EVs. Check out our dedicated editorial sections: Insight & policy | EV news | Charging & infrastructure | Costs & incentives | Benefit-in-kind | EV case studies | EV road tests

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Top Speed
99mph
Mercedes-Benz EQA Top Speed
VED band
A
Mercedes-Benz EQA Ved
Fuel Type
Electric
Mercedes-Benz EQA Fuel Type
Residual Value
3 Year 60k : £22,436
4 Year 80k : £18,129
Running Cost (ppm)
3 Year 60k : 55.30
4 Year 80k : 50.38

CO2 emissions and fuel consumption data correct at time of writing. The latest figures are available in the Fleet News fuel cost calculator and the company car tax calculator.

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