- Comfortable, easy to drive and packed with tech
- Seven-seat practicality
- Stylish good looks inside and out
- Range plummets if you drive at 70mph on motorways
- Third row seats only suitable for children
- Quite expensive
The EQ prefix is Mercedes’ way of letting us know the model is an EV. The next letter, in this case a ‘B’ reflects on the size and model the car is based on. So, this model shares many of its features with the full-sized GLB.
It sits neatly between the EQA and EQC models and there are three trim levels available called AMG Line, AMG Line Premium and AMG Line Launch Edition, which we tested.
With four-wheel drive capabilities, this is a family SUV that has one of the classiest interiors around and it will certainly get you plenty of ‘perfect parenting points’ on the school run.
On The Road
There is a choice between an EQB 300 and 350 models and while they both feature a 66.5kWh battery, the difference is in the power outputs with the 300 delivering 225bhp and the 350 288bhp.
We opted for the most powerful version, the EQB 350 4MATIC AMG Line Launch Edition, which could sprint from 0-60mph in just 6.0 seconds and onto a top speed of 99mph. That’s a rapid turn of pace for a car that has a kerb weight of 2.1 tonnes.
This all-wheel drive model boasts 370Nm of torque and that means there is always ample power on tap to overtake slower moving vehicle. With the slightest pressure on the accelerator pedal, the EQB powers away and this is a car that eats up the motorway miles for fun.
Drive modes called Eco, Comfort, Sport and Individual alter the characteristics of the car and there are five levels of recuperative braking to boost the battery levels on the fly.
With a driving range between charges of 250-257 miles, the EQB can easily cover long journeys. But if driven in a more aggressive manner or just cruising at 70mph on motorways, that range does seem to drop fairly rapidly.
But if Mother Nature throws a spanner in the works, the 4MATIC all-wheel drive system will keep you fully grounded in more testing driving conditions.
There’s no denying the significant size of the EQB. Like the Mercedes GL seven seater, it stretches 4,687mm in length, is 2,020mm wide and 1,667mm high. However, despite its high sides, the vehicle is nicely composed when faced with twisting country lanes. The road holding is assured and body sway is only noticeable if corners are attacked too eagerly.
The Sport mode does sharpen up the acceleration considerably, but most owners will likely stick to Comfort which delivers a smooth and refined ride with barely a sound filtering into the cabin, apart from a little wind noise at higher speeds.
Most bumps and dips are smoothed out by the effective suspension system with its electrically-adjustable damping and speed sensitive steering.
Comfort levels are exceptionally high inside the EQB and, despite being very capable of putting in a dynamic performance, this vehicle is really all about refinement and luxury.
The cruise control system is one of the easiest to activate which is ideal if travelling along motorways with lots of average speed check areas.
Then, in congested town centres, the EQB is nice and agile with well weighted steering. The Parking Package with a 360-degree camera will make you look an expert when manoeuvring the car into a tight space.
The five-door EQB has plenty of road presence with its upright design and some of the snazziest 20-inch multi-spoke alloy wheel designs imaginable. Eye-catching features include AMG Line bodystyling, heat-insulating dark tinted glass, an electrically-operated panoramic sunroof, roof rails and blue EQ badging to highlight the vehicle’s electric powertrain.
Our test car boasted a striking Rose gold shade which really looked the business and meant the model gained plenty of attention.
Moving inside, the EQB is pure quality throughout with supportive black seats created from Artico man-made leather and microfibre. The seats can be heated and there is a multifunction leather sports steering wheel.
The main focal point is the infotainment system that combines two 10-inch displays behind a single pane of glass. There are soft-touch surfaces, wooden inserts, 64-colour ambient lighting and an advanced climate control set-up.
The EQB also features an external acoustic warning system to alert pedestrians and cyclists at speeds of up to 19mph.
In The Car
Behind the Wheel
Finding the perfect driving position inside the EQB takes a matter of seconds with powered seats and a manually adjustable steering wheel. Memory settings allow you to save the position.
With its elevated seating, the driver is treated to excellent all-round visibility, although the wide B pillars do slightly obscure the over-the-shoulder view at times.
The dual screens off access to the exceptional MBUX infotainment system which is Mercedes’ innovative multi-media set-up. There is a touchpad to operate numerous tasks, along with the Mercedes personal assistant or gesture control.
The level of on-board tech seems endless and even after a week behind the wheel, I was still discovering new features. Creature comforts include a head-up display, smartphone integration via Apple CarPlay or Android Auto with a wireless charging pad, a 10-speaker sound system, sat nav and lots more besides.
The instrumentation can be personalised to taste and there are plenty of readouts concerning battery charge levels and the remaining driving range.
Space & Practicality
The Mercedes EQB is a full-sized SUV with room for seven occupants which is quite rare in the EV sector. The duo of rear seats fold flat to the boot floor when not needed and can easily be raised or lowered. They are fine for anyone under 5ft 4ins in height and child seats can also be fitted to them.
The boot is accessed via a powered tailgate and, with five seats in use, can accommodate 465 litres of luggage. This is increased to a very respectable 1,710 litres if the seats in rows two and three are folded flat.
There are numerous storage compartments throughout the vehicle, such as a glovebox, deep central cubby, wide door pockets, seat back nets, front and rear cup holders and some practical trays.
When it comes to the day-to-day practicalities, the EQB has a 66.5kWh battery and a 100kW DC on-board charger allowing it to charge from 10 to 80 per cent in about 32 minutes, and from 10 to 100 per cent in five hours and 45 minutes using a 100kW wallbox.
Navigation with Electric Intelligence is included free for three years. This clever system calculates the route that will get the vehicle to its destination the fastest, taking into account charging times.
The rear doors open nice and wide offering easy access to child seats and the elevated seating will be ideal for anyone with any mobility issues.
The Mercedes EQB is a premium full-sized EV with seven seats so expect the price to reflect that. And it does. The entry level EQB 300 4MATIC AMG Line version costs £52,145. However, our range-topping EQB 350 4MATIC AMG Line Launch Edition car was priced at £62,645. The addition of Rose gold metallic paint added an extra £895 to the price-tag.
As the EQB is a battery-powered electric vehicle, it emits no CO2 during driving. Therefore it is exempt from any Vehicle Excise Duty otherwise known as road tax. It can also be driven free of charge through any Congestion Charge or low emission zones.
And the EQB will bring financial savings to the business user too with a Benefit in Kind rating of just two per cent.
The insurance group rating for the car we tested is 48.
Quality & Reliability
Mercedes has an enviable reputation for developing cars that are both reliable and survive the test of time, offering owners year after year of problem-free motoring. It’s also a company that scores well in customer satisfaction surveys.
While some of the electrification technology is still quite new, the EQB will have been put through a rigorous testing process before being launched to market with prototypes tested in severe conditions for durability.
The vehicle certainly feels sturdy in its design with high-end materials, fixtures and fittings, plus quality upholstery throughout.
The EQB comes with Mercedes’ standard three-year, unlimited mileage warranty, plus three years of roadside assistance. The battery warranty covers eight-years or 100,000 miles.
Safety & Security
When tested for its Euro NCAP safety rating, the EQB was awarded a maximum five stars with excellent scores in child and adult occupant safety.
The Launch Edition, which costs £6k more than the AMG Line Premium model, gains a Driving Assistance package and this introduces the likes of Active Distance Assist DISTRONIC, Active Blind Spot Assist with Exit warning, Evasive Steering Assist, Active Lane Keeping Assist, Pedestrian warning function near pedestrian crossings, Active Steering Assist, Active Brake Assist and Pre-Safe Plus
The vehicle has the 4MATIC permanent all-wheel drive system to keep you on the move in more testing driving conditions and there is an alarm and immobiliser to keep intruders at bay.
The Mercedes EQB is a quality seven-seater EV that is beautiful to drive and just as attractive to look at. It’s not cheap and there are vehicles out there with a superior driving range between charges, but this is a fabulous all-rounder for any active family that enjoys a sense of style.
If you are in the market for a fully loaded seven-seat SUV that boast all the bells and whistles imaginable, plus puts in a very impressive performance, then the GLS could be the answer. Find out more