Customers, whether private or commercial users, place the same demands on electric vehicles as they do on equivalent vehicles with combustion engines: complete reliability and functionality – even in severe conditions. That was exactly what the winter test of the Mercedes-Benz EQV 300 focused on.
For several weeks, the development team subjected the first purely battery-electric premium MPV from Mercedes-Benz to an endurance test in Arjeplog, Sweden under severe climatic conditions. At temperatures reaching minus 30 degrees with icy roads and deep snow, the EQV proved its operability under extreme conditions. Thus, the vehicle completed one of its last milestones on the way to its market launch in the second half of 2020.
The vehicles were put through numerous complex tests on the test site close to the Arctic Circle. Over 30 engineers, electronics experts and mechanics from Mercedes-Benz Vans were involved: for example, they drove over frozen lakes and measured the effects of extreme cold on handling, ergonomics and comfort, using specialised measuring technology. The starting behaviour and low-temperature resistance of the drive components, software and interfaces, and the thermomanagement of the entire vehicle, were tested in cold cell facilities.
A further important element of the test: charging behaviour. The EQV is equipped with an integrated fast-charging function with which it can recharge from 10 to around 80% of its energy in 45 minutes. This is a great advantage, particularly when travelling, but it must function reliably regardless of the temperature.
The Mercedes-Benz EQV neatly uses the advantages of electromobility in cold conditions. EQV drivers can enter a departure time via the Mercedes me app from the comfort of their home or office, so as to preheat the interior to the desired temperature and melt any snow or ice on the windows. If the EQV is plugged in to a charging point, the required electricity does not reduce the range as it is taken from the mains supply and not from the drive battery. This is a plus in comfort.
Reliable handling in ice and snow is also essential. On the test drives, the EQV showed that the low, central positioning of the lithium-ion battery in the underbody has a positive effect on the vehicle’s handling, specifically under winter conditions. The conclusion of the testers was that the EQV is fit for customer operations – even in arctic conditions.
“In this final winter test, we demanded everything of the EQV – and it performed very well. We used these extensive tests for the last milestones on the way to market readiness,” said Benjamin Kaehler, Head of [email protected] at Mercedes-Benz Vans. “Particularly with regard to thermal management, so important to electric vans, we were able to gain insights which will make the EQV safer and more comfortable.”
The market launch of the EQV will be in the second half of 2020. After the EQC, this electric MPV is the second model of the Mercedes-Benz “EQ” technology brand. The EQV is available in two wheelbases and with a permissible gross vehicle weight of 3500 kilogrammes. The high-voltage battery is integrated into the underbody so that no space in the interior is sacrificed. By flexible addition of single or bench seats, the six-seater EQV can be converted to seat seven or even eight people.
A further highlight of the EQV is the MBUX multimedia system with touchscreen, intelligent voice control with the key word “Hey Mercedes” and EQ-specific displays and settings. This includes EQ-optimised navigation, for example, which automatically calculates a fast, comfortable route with few charge stops and short charging times. The electric drivetrain of the EQV is located on the front axle. Peak output is 150 kW (204 hp), the Mercedes-Benz EQV achieves a maximum torque of up to 362 newton metres. It can reach a top speed of 160 km/h.