By Peter Perrotta
The future is now.
If you don’t think electric vehicles will command the automotive landscape in the future, then you might be sadly mistaken.
In fact, the future is already here.
Recently, the state of California passed legislation that bans the sale of new gas cars in that state starting in 2035.
Elon Musk has made himself the richest man in the world from selling his all-electric Tesla vehicle and he’s just in the first inning of what he will eventually be able to produce.
But, Musk isn’t going down this innovative new road alone. In fact, almost all of the major car producing companies in the world are sinking billions of dollars into the development and production of all electric vehicles.
Recently, I had the privilege of testing Mercedes’ latest entry into the all-electric arena when I got behind the wheel of the 2022 Mercedes EQS 580 4matic sedan.
The superlatives I can use to describe this technologically mind-blowing car wouldn’t be enough to truly describe it.
Simply put, this is one truly amazing electric car, albeit not inexpensive.
My 24-year-old son, when he first saw the EQS parked outside our house, said: “Dad, what is that? It looks really futuristic.”
Indeed, it does.
This all-wheel drive sedan looks amazingly futuristic with a sleek, sculpted look that gives it a luxurious but sporty look that is certainly a head turner.
You know a car has that “look” when almost everyone who sees you in it comments on what a good-looking ride it is.
But, that’s just the beginning. Once you crack open the door and settle inside, you immediately sense that this vehicle has spaceship like technology.
The EQS comes chock full of beautiful, high-quality materials inside including extensive ambient lighting, headrest pillows for front and back passengers and an executive rear seat package. It has adjustable back seats with massage functions, neck and shoulder heating and an individual tablet to control the MBUX infotainment system.
But clearly the star of the show inside this EQS is what Mercedes calls its Hyperscreen. This my friends, is worth the price of admission. It’s a giant wall-to-wall, touch screen panel of state-of-the-art glass that stretches across the entire front dashboard. It encompasses the instrument panel and infotainment system and even extends all the way over to the passenger side.
Quite simply, I’ve never seen such amazing touch screen technology anywhere, ever.
The driver has what amounts to a full over-sized tablet at his fingertips to control all of the vehicle’s functions and the passenger has their own tablet in front of them to also control vehicle functions.
Of course, none of this comes cheaply. Eventually, Mercedes will produce all electric vehicles that have a lower price tag. But, for now, this vehicle isn’t for the faint of wallet.
The EQS I tested for one week carries a base price of $125,900. With added options my tester had a bottom-line sticker price of $141,400.
My EQS 580 4Matic was powered by a 516-horsepower producing 107.8 kwh (kilowatt hours) battery with a range of close to 400 miles if on a full charge.
The EQS 580 has an electric motor on each axle which translates to all wheel drive. It is capable of zero to 60 mph (miles per hour) acceleration in just 3.7 seconds.
So how does it handle and drive? Put simply, it drives and handles very smoothly and effortlessly in an almost “dream like” way. It truly is an amazing piece of technology.
So how easy is it to charge and how long does it take?
Well, I live in a second-floor condo. So, the option of plugging it in to charge in my garage overnight and waking up with a vehicle on a full charge is not there for me.
I needed to find a “stage 3” (the fastest charging option) charging station. You do this by using Goggle maps.
For me the nearest fast charging station was located at my local Target store in Cherry Hill.
It is very easy to pull up to the charging station and connect the charger to the car, put your debit card in and begin charging.
The first time I charged it, I was down to a 200-mile range (about a half tank) but wanted to give it a full charge since I was about to go on a trip with it.
It took me about 20 minutes to give it a full charge (starting with just under 50% range left) and cost just under $50.
Once fully charged, I got close to 400 miles of range on it.
The only other experience I had ever had with a fully electric vehicle was with the Chevy Bolt a couple of years ago. This vehicle charged up much faster than the Chevy.
The folks at Car and Driver call the new Mercedes EQS “a truly awe-inspiring interior, more range than German EV rivals and a showcase of Mercedes’ latest technology.”
I certainly would have to agree with that assessment.
So, if you are financially able to handle the steep price tag of this new EQS and you are considering going all electric this has to be a vehicle you put on your short list.
Peter Perrotta’s On The Road column appears every other week. He can be contacted at email@example.com.
On The Road is sponsored by Capital Motor Cars of Springfield, N.J.