The 10 Coolest Features Of The 2023 Mercedes-Benz EQS SUV

The battle for dominance in the high-end luxury electric SUV sector is heating up, with the BMW iX on the way and the Tesla Model X and Audi e-tron already in the hands of customers. Mercedes-Benz has now joined the fray, with their new EQS SUV, that's slated to begin deliveries in late 2022. The SUV shares many of its features with the EQS sedan that's already in dealerships, which is itself an electric version of the S-Class. The EQS SUV promises traditional Mercedes luxury mixed with cutting-edge design and plenty of features to keep both driver and passengers happy on the road.

The question is: Can the brand's latest offering stand out in what's becoming an increasingly crowded field? If the success of the EQS sedan is anything to go by, the answer is yes. Mercedes has developed a new suite of features specifically for the EQS line, all while maintaining the same level of refinement and luxury that buyers expect. The car is packed with all manner of options, modes and packages, but these ten stand out above the rest.

Up to 536 horsepower on tap

A choice of two specs will be available on launch, either the base-spec EQS 450+, which sports a single-motor rear-wheel drive setup and delivers 355 horsepower, or the top-spec EQS 580 4Matic, with a dual-motor all-wheel drive setup that makes 536 horsepower. This is very similar to what's offered on the 2022 EQS sedan, although it's worth noting that the sedan also comes with an AMG variant that makes 649 horsepower in regular mode, and a huge 751 horsepower in optional boost mode. Whether there will be an EQS SUV AMG remains to be seen, but it's certainly possible, as both the sedan and SUV version of the EQS share the same platform and many of the same internal components.

For now, 536 horsepower remains the maximum output available for the EQS SUV, but if an AMG variant does emerge, it may well boast an even bigger horsepower figure than the EQS AMG sedan. There's no official word on pricing so far, but estimates have put the asking price around $110,000 and $130,000, slightly more than the EQS sedan and roughly equivalent to the price of a new S-Class.

At least 315 miles of range

According to the brand's press release, the EQS SUV will be capable of at least 315 miles (507 km) of range in all-wheel-drive form, and at least 333 miles (536 km) in rear-wheel-drive form. However, Mercedes does note that these figures have been obtained through its internal WLTP test procedure and that no officially recognized agency ratings exist to date. Tom's Guide points out that the EQS sedan offers up to 453 miles of range according to WLTP testing, but the EPA rates it at just 350 miles. So, it's quite possible that the EPA rating for the EQS SUV might be significantly less than Mercedes' own estimates.

Nevertheless, its current WLTP range puts it roughly on par with the BMW iX and ahead of the Audi e-tron, but behind the class-leading Tesla Model X. The Tesla offers a minimum of 335 miles of range in high-performance Plaid spec, or 351 miles in Long Range spec. The EQS SUV will be compatible with 200kW fast chargers, which will be able to boost up to 186 miles of range in just 15 minutes. Charging from 10-80% on a compatible rapid charging system should take just 31 minutes, according to the brand's official data. Owners in the US will get free access to Electrify America charging points for their first two years of ownership. As it stands, buyers in international markets across Europe and Asia receive no such perk.

Off-road mode

Including an off-road mode on a $100,000+ electric SUV that most owners will only ever drive around suburbia might seem pointless, but it's certainly a way to make the car stand out from its rivals. And anyway, Mercedes already makes the almighty G-Class, a highly capable all-terrain SUV that's more likely to be seen crawling through LA traffic than crawling over a rocky trail, but that Mercedes still develops with new off-road tech every few years regardless. So, it's no surprise to find out that the off-road mode for the new EQS SUV is comprehensive, with specific setups for mud, gravel, and sand.

The brand has been keen to show off the EQS SUV's all-terrain chops by inviting select members of the press out to ride-along demonstrations, and SlashGear went along to one such event. The car easily waded through standing water and mud, and its four-wheel steering helped it navigate tight, tree-lined corners. The air suspension can lift to give the car extra clearance over rough ground, so all but the rockiest of trails should be no problem. Make no mistake, this isn't a G-Class by any stretch of the imagination, but if its owner wants to take it off the asphalt, the EQS can handle more off-roading than any other SUV in its class.

World-class interior

High-end Mercedes vehicles are known for their top-tier interiors, and the EQS SUV is no different. The interior is covered in fine leather with polished metal accents throughout, and the whole cabin remains very consistent with the styling of the S-Class and EQS sedan. Climate control is more of an exact science than ever thanks to a pre-entry feature, where the driver can set the expected departure time and desired temperature via the Mercedes app or the in-car display. Four or five zones of climate control are available throughout the car, with each passenger able to individually customize the temperature through a dedicated panel.

To keep the air quality inside the cabin as high as possible, the EQS SUV also comes with a large HEPA filter, which filters pollen, particulates, and other pollutants through active carbon. The filter resides under the hood and is capable of cleaning the air to the level of an operating room, according to TopElectricSUV. For buyers who want the most tranquil interior, Mercedes offers an Acoustic Comfort Package, which adds laminated windows, wind deflectors, and revised seals for better insulation from road and ambient noise.

Futuristic 56-inch hyperscreen

Step inside the EQS SUV and there's one particular feature that immediately stands out. The huge screen that dominates the front of the car is called the MBUX (Mercedes-Benz User Experience) hyperscreen, and it's responsible for everything from displaying the speedometer to the climate controls. The screen is built with three separate units that blend seamlessly into one, and measures around 56 inches in length. It uses OLED technology to provide a crisper image in all lighting conditions, with self-actuated pixels that remain switched off when not in use, leading to a deeper black color than what's available on a conventional screen. Eye-tracking technology is also employed to ensure the driver doesn't take their eyes off the road for too long, as the screen is automatically dimmed if the car detects that happening.

Hyperscreen might be an impressive piece of technology, but it's not without its flaws. In their review of the 2022 EQS sedan, Car and Driver reported that in bright sunlight, the screen is prone to reflections, not ideal considering it's responsible for all the gauge clusters and readouts that a driver needs to be able to read clearly at all times. There is no indication from Mercedes that the screen in the EQS SUV differs in any way from the sedan, so it's likely that the new car will also suffer the same problem.

Infotainment including Dolby Atmos

The car is packed with infotainment features, including the latest connectivity features and a built-in movie player for the rear-seat passengers and, in some markets, the front-seat passenger too. But, the best part of the EQS SUV's infotainment package is the inclusion of Dolby Atmos, a cutting-edge audio system that reportedly gives more depth and clarity than a traditional system. The car comes equipped with 15 Burmester speakers as standard, and Atmos ensures that the audio can be heard in a "3D" effect all around the car.

The system is of course useful for listening to music with greater clarity than traditional speakers alone can achieve, but it also has another useful function. When paired with Mercedes' wellness package, Atmos can play various sounds from nature throughout the car (for example rain, forest, or sea ambient sounds), to help relax the driver and passengers. The EQS SUV isn't the only car to have such a system, as the Mercedes S-Class and its Maybach variant, along with the Lucid Air, are also shipping with Atmos from summer 2022.

Active ambient lighting

One of the most distinctive features on recent Mercedes-Benz models is their ambient lighting, and the EQS SUV provides an updated version that stretches throughout the car. The lighting can be configured remotely to the driver's preference and is stored under their individual driver profile. That profile can then be transferred and used in other cars that also feature the Mercedes MBUX system. The lighting can intelligently change to match the brightness of the hyperscreen, with a feature that Mercedes calls, "Discreet Mode," dimming the lights and screen as much as possible.

The ambient lights around the car are also key to executing the theme of wellness that Mercedes has focused on with the EQS range. When "Energizing Comfort" mode is enabled, a spa-like assortment of sounds is played, the lighting is adjusted accordingly, and even the seats massage patterns that are tailored to the driver's mood. A separate mode, called "Nap Mode," allows the driver to sleep when pulled over in a service station. According to TechCrunch, enabling Nap Mode will recline the seats, close the side windows and blinds, dim or turn off the ambient lighting, and show a depiction of a starry sky on the hyperscreen.

Distinctive one-bow design

The new EQ line of cars features a distinctive design language that Mercedes calls "one-bow," and it's markedly different from the rest of the brand's gas and diesel range. The EQS sedan and the long-awaited EQC crossover are styled very similarly, although the EQC sports a more traditional grille at the front, and looks better for it. It's arguably not the brand's prettiest design, but it's certainly distinctive, and the huge star emblem on the front makes sure that no one will mistake the Mercedes EQ range for any of its competitors.

The EQS SUV features a more streamlined shape than many of Mercedes' other SUVs, with a sloping roofline and a tapered greenhouse. This new, rounder shape is most likely used in the name of aerodynamics, as studies have proved that better aero can significantly improve an EV's range. This focus on optimal aero stretches to the design of the wheels, which Mercedes has extensively tested in wind tunnels to reduce their air resistance as much as possible.

A new, unique fragrance for the car

One of the most unique-but-intriguing features of the EQS SUV doesn't concern its function as a car at all, but rather the smell that drivers are greeted with when they sit inside it. To make the car even more distinctive, Mercedes has taken the unusual step of creating a fragrance specifically for the interior of the EQS, called No.6 MOOD Mimosa. The "No.6" in its name is apparently in reference to the fact that electric vehicles were first added to the Mercedes range in 1906, with the "Mercédès Electrique" line. The EQS SUV press release also gives a breakdown of the scents that make up the composition of this fragrance, and it's predictably long and complex.

The smell is apparently split into three phases, with the top note consisting of violet, orange, and berries, and the middle of plants like jasmine and geranium. The base note, according to Mercedes, "smells the longest" and contains tobacco, sandalwood, cedar, and honey. It's hard to imagine what this actually translates to in terms of a real-world smell, but either way, it's infinitely better than the diesel fumes that waft through most people's air-con systems when they're stuck in city traffic. The fragrance is shared with the EQS sedan, and at present, it's not known whether the cheaper EQC crossover will get such an option when it eventually arrives in the US.

Seating for up to seven

As well as being able to smell the inside of their car, buyers of the EQS SUV will be relieved to know that they configure it in a variety of ways too. The car seats up to seven with an optional third row or up to five in dual-row spec. The EQS SUV comes with a great deal more legroom in the second row than other models in the EQ range, and despite its tapered roofline, there's more headroom as well. The third row will only be suitable for children or adults on short journeys, as it's quite cramped in comparison.

Being an SUV, there's also more room for cargo than in the EQS sedan. Mercedes advertises the EQS SUV as having up to 880 liters of trunk space without the third row equipped, which translates to about 31 cubic feet. Fold the second-row seats down and space is increased to a huge 74 cubic feet, enough to fit four golf bags, according to SlashGear's own review. With all three rows up, however, cargo space drops to just 7 cubic feet. Anyone who needs to transport seven people and a lot of luggage can tow a trailer, as the EQS SUV has a maximum towing capacity of 3,500 lb, a far cry from other Mercedes SUVs, but a respectable figure for the electric SUV segment.