Preview: Mercedes-Benz EQB electric crossover coming in 2022

Mercedes-Benz has used Auto Shanghai 2021 to present yet another addition to its growing stable of EQ electric vehicles.

The latest is the EQB compact crossover which was revealed on Monday and confirmed to start sales in the United States in 2022. The version shown is for the Chinese market but the U.S.-spec EQB should be similar.

The EQB is essentially an electric version of the gas-powered GLB-Class which is already on sale here. Mercedes also has an EQA based on the slightly smaller GLA-Class crossover, but we don’t expect this model to reach the U.S.

Compared to the GLB-Class, the EQB benefits from unique styling treatments front and rear, including the addition of new lights. It’s not purely for aesthetics as the sealed-off grille of the EQB helps to improve aero efficiency and as a result optimize range.

The interior is pretty much a match with the GLB-Class, though the navigation system is designed specifically for electric mobility. It incorporates GPS data, traffic sign recognition and info from several vehicle sensors to help overall efficiency and provide accurate info on range. For instance, it takes into account the route’s topography and even weather, and is able to react dynamically to changes. It also knows when to bring the battery to optimal temperature for charging before a planned charging stop.

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Unlike the recently revealed 2022 EQS electric sedan, the EQB doesn’t ride on a dedicated EV platform. Instead, it uses an electric version of the MFA2 platform found in Mercedes’ compact range, including the GLB-Class. For the Chinese market, the EQB is being launched as a single EQB 350 model with a 288-hp motor mounted at the front axle and a battery with a 66.5-kilowatt-hour capacity. More models are planned including ones with long-range battery options and dual-motor all-wheel drive.

Mercedes-Benz EQB (Chinese spec)

Mercedes-Benz EQB (Chinese spec)

No range estimate has been given for the EQB 350 but we don’t expect it to be high with this battery. Charging at up to 100 kilowatts is possible, which will enable a 10-80 percent charge in a little over 30 minutes. Specifications for the U.S. market will be announced closer to next year’s launch.

Production of the EQB will be handled at plants in China and Hungary.

For more from the Shanghai auto show, head to our dedicated hub.

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