A claimed range in excess of 1,000km from this stylish looking all-electric saloon could mean that range anxiety will become a thing of the past. The Mercedes-Benz Vision EQXX, unveiled at CES 2022 in Los Vegas, may only currently be a concept vehicle, but with the German auto manufacturer confirming that many of the elements it contains are close to moving into series production, the day when EVs will ‘out-distance’ the best of ICE powered cars is drawing ever closer.
Of particular interest is that the battery in this running and driving prototype has a lower energy capacity at just under 100kWh than those found in many existing electric cars that offer significantly shorter range, and is small enough to fit in a compact car. In fact it has 50% less volume and is 30% lighter than the 107.8kWh pack found in the EQS. The lithium-ion battery has a high silicon content battery, can operate at a maximum system voltage of more than 900V and features ‘active cell balancing’ which draws energy evenly from each cell, thereby delivering better efficiency. The end result is a vehicle that delivers energy consumption figures of less than 10 kWh per 100 kilometres, equivalent to about 282mpg in an ICE car. Mercedes-Benz claims that 95% of the energy from the battery ends up at the wheels, which compares with just 30% from even the most efficient ICE powertrain. The battery technology is expected to enter production in 2024.
The Vision EQXX also lays claim to setting new standards for aerodynamic efficiency with a drag rating of 0.175Cd. An electric-only chassis with lightweight F1 subframe minimises weight while it features ultra-low-rolling-resistance tyres combined with lightweight magnesium wheels, ‘ninth-generation’ exterior mirrors, and ultra-thin solar power roof panels that feed the battery system for up to 25 km of extra range.
“The technology programme behind the VISION EQXX will define and enable future Mercedes-Benz models and features,” says Markus Schäfer, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Mercedes-Benz AG, Chief Technology Officer responsible for Development and Procurement. “VISION EQXX has seen the best minds from our R&D centres work together with engineers from our Formula 1 and Formula E programmes. They are proving that innovations from motorsport – where powertrains are already highly electrified – have immediate relevance for road car development. We are challenging current development processes with innovative spirit and outside-the-box thinking. This truly is the way forward.”