First New EV For US In 2015 Finally Arrives: Mercedes Delivers The S550 Plug-In

AUG 11 2015 BY JAY COLE 49

Mercedes-Benz S550 Plug-in Hybrid Arrives In US

Mercedes-Benz S550 Plug-in Hybrid Arrives In US

It wasn’t exactly a heated race to deliver the first all-new plug-in vehicle for the United States in 2015.

EV Technology Is Rapidly Invading The Premium Luxury Space In The US

EV Technology Is Rapidly Invading The Premium Luxury Space In The US

Just 200-odd days after Ryan Seacrest dropped the ball on 2014 in New York City, the first new EV offering for the US was sold in mid-July by Mercedes-Benz in the form of the S550 Plug-In Hybrid.

Look at our monthly EV sales scorecard, by month’s end 10 had been delivered to Americans.

In fact, 3/4s of a year had gone by since the last major plug-in was launch in America (Porsche Cayenne S e-Hybrid in October 2014).

The luxury Mercedes starts at $94,400 (+925 destination) and features a 8.7 kWh battery that helps propel the large sedan to 60 mph in 5.2 seconds, as well as giving it an estimated all-electric range of about 18 miles.  The S550 PHV is also eligible for some $4,700 in federal incentives.

It should be noted that even before federal incentive, the S550 plug-in is the least expensive of any S Class offering.  The  S550 petrol sedan starts at $95,650 (+dst).

More significantly, the arrival of the S550 Plug-In is the first of a wave of a dozen new (or upgraded) EV offerings for the back half of 2015.  Other notable new and significantly upgraded EVs arriving in the next 8 weeks are the Audi A3 Sportback e-tron, Tesla Model X, Volvo XC 90 and of course next generation Chevrolet Volt.

2015 Monthly Sales Chart For The Major Plug-In Automakers - *Estimated Tesla NA Sales Numbers – Reconciled on Quarterly Totals, ** Fiat Does Not Report Sales Directly, Estimate Based on State/Rebate Data

2015 Monthly Sales Chart For The Major Plug-In Automakers – *Estimated Tesla NA Sales Numbers – Reconciled on Quarterly Totals, ** Fiat Does Not Report Sales Directly, Estimate Based on State/Rebate Data

Mercedes-Benz C350e Arrives Shortly

Mercedes-Benz C350e Arrives Shortly

Shortly, Mercedes will also begin deliveries of the C350 e in the US, which is a smaller sedan also featuring about 20 miles of electric range.   Once on sale, the C350e will make Mercedes-Benz the first American brand to have sold 4 different plug-ins (including a handful of supercar SLS AMG Coupé Electric Drives).

Currently, both Porsche and Ford also have 3 plug-ins available for sale.

Worldwide, Mercedes has already sold ~400 S550 Plug-in Hybrids, and just over 1,000 C350e Plug-Ins.




Categories: Mercedes, Sales

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49 Comments on "First New EV For US In 2015 Finally Arrives: Mercedes Delivers The S550 Plug-In"

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Who’s cells are they using? Are they still working w/Tesla or have they gone off on their own now?

Provided the fact that they moved away from Tesla with Smart Cars and no word on tesla related to the plugin versions i would almost bet that the electric b class is the only tesla equipped daimler.

The cells are, as I recall, from Panasonic, but not via Tesla.

the C350e was made available just recently in europe. So the ~1000 units sold until now is already a huge success. Can’t wait to see them rise in the US 🙂

as the article mentioned, several new PHEVs will enter the US market later this year, including the benz c350 (since it’s only a c-class it doesn’t really qualify as a “benzo”).

18 miles of AER…that must be so exiting for people shopping for $100K vehicles.


I don’t think people shopping for $100K vehicles really care that much about gas prices.

Maybe you missed the sarcasm?

Maybe they care about the environment?

But 18 miles is strictly for using the less they can the possibilities of electric drives… as the other ICE car makers.

Give them green-cred and they can talk about their “plug-in” at the water cooler.


because owning a plug-in that if driven extremely carefully could stay in all electric mode for all of 18 miles is somehow cool in the circles buyers of an S class Mercedes travel?

I think these car sell in regions that incentivize cars like this and I doubt any of these car will have badges referring to their powertrain.

Because when their friends talk about their S-Classes, they can say “Oh, I have the new plug-in S-class”.

When you live in some of the suburbs, trips to the country club, various lawyers, your doctor and various other luxury shopping malls are usually within a nice 15 mile radius. As long as your driver finds a public L2 to plug into near your destination, he can plug in while you are in your appointment. Sounds like it will work out for some.

Ah the chauffeur plugs in and the owner saves half a gallon of gasoline…I’m guessing you are being sarcastic here?

Just get a f*ckin Tesla!

the PHEV s-class is the same price as the ICE s-class (well, as the article points out, the PHEV is *slightly* less expensive than the ICE).

what the article doesn’t mention is that original deliveries of the PHEV s-class are limited to california. what i can’t figure out is what m-b is going to do with maybach, which is just an s600 benzo.

i’ve got to win the lottery so i can get an s-class. that reminds me that i need to go buy some lottery tickets today.

So in the US it’s Mercedes that does most of the subsidizing. The metal must be moved to comply…

Wonder if any owner could ever be bothered to actually plug it in.

i would wager that people who buy the PHEV s-class benzo *will* plug it in. i own an electric car and can tell you that the drive is very smooth; one of the things electric cars do is provide very “high end” driving characteristics when it comes to smoothness of operation. that said, the s-class benzo is already a very smooth driving car but i still think that the drivers will appreciate the driving characteristics of the electric motor even in a PHEV s-class benzo.

Funny. Agree that it’s unclear who would buy one of these. The CT6 with an 18 kWh batter I can see, but a 9 kWh pack for a car this size is simply not exciting.

In Europe a lot of taxation is tied to CO2/km. this could provide large savings.

Nailed it

a person looking to save money is probably not going to buy a benzo s-class.

8.7kWh battery? 18 miles electric range? Why bother? Now they’ll be parking at EV charging spaces and make it more difficult for a real EV that may need a charge to get one. It’s worse than a PiP (Plug-in Prius).

keep in mind, mercedes-benz is a *european* company, which sells most of their cars in europe. if the s-class benzo has a “hold” mode, that would tell me that this car was developed to meet european mandates.

I think you mean drive in congestion zones? But good point. Hadn’t thought of that.

yes, i was thinking about congestion zones because those zones could limit where you could drive in an ICE vehicle.

if i win the lottery, i’m going to buy an s-class benzo. picture me rollin’…

unfortunately, i didn’t win the “mega millions” lottery last night, 🙁 but “powerball” is tonight so i’ve got another chance.

Snarky-ness aimed at the 1% aside, I personally think any new plugin vehicle … even those targeted to the jet set … should be applauded. It’s just one more EV on the road. And who knows, an S550 plugin driver would have the ear of politicians who make policy on EV infrastructure and incentives. 🙂

Well said.

Much as I resent how the 1% have manipulated our economy, financial regulations, and tax structure to enrich themselves at the expense of us 99%, being super-rich doesn’t prevent them from being environmentally conscious. And altho a mere 18 miles of AER isn’t great compared to a Leaf or a Volt, it’s still better than a full-fledged gasmobile. This isn’t mere greenwashing, like a non-plug-in mild hybrid.

+1 every EV is a good EV

Also Benz shopper might discover plug-ins for the first time through this. In 2 years when their lease is up, they might be cross shopping with a Model S.

i suspect that many benzo s-class owners already have a tesla model s. the model s is not really a substitute for an s-class; the model s is not really a luxury car in the conventional sense, where the benzo s-class is.

Most livery s-class spend a lot of time idle in traffic or waiting for the client with the engine and AC on. A plug in would probably save a lot of fuel for the owners.

I’m guessing that Mercedes owners care less about saving gas money, than the opportunity to not have to go to the gas station as often, you know, and be among the common folk. 😀

That is a very good point, a lot of these will be owned not by an individual but be for private hire to get to and from the airport with a driver. The ability to sit with the engine off cooling the car would actually make a lot of sense as would sitting in traffic with the engine off.

S550 PHEV @ 4,724 pounds, with a 250lb 8.7kwh battery.

Cadillac CT6 PHEV @ 4,150 pounds, with a 450lb 18.4kwh battery. (3,700 projected weight, plus 450lb battery)

Compared to the Caddy, I think this Benz will suffer from motive indecision. 18 miles on ~6 usable kwh, in a car that heavy? What it has going for it is an interior, and maybe a hold mode for urban settings.

i don’t think this is the result of indecisiveness; european PHEVs seem to be consistently coming in at around 20 miles AER. btw, i would be *very* surprised if the PHEV s-class benzo is an EREV.

Is this supposed to say 2015? “dropped the ball on 2014 in New York City”

8.7 kWh battery? 18 miles AER? This is just a joke! They are saying “we don’t really think anyone will bother plugging it in, we’re just doing this to get ZEV credits’

18 miles is better than nothing, but I still think it’s shameful for a company like Mercedes to be taking smaller baby-steps than Ford did 3 years ago (Energi), or GM did 4 years ago (Volt).

The age of gasoline-dominant drivetrains should be over for innovative companies. Haven’t we proven electric drive is superior to gas already? But instead we have the worlds most bass-ackwards car company (General Motors) leading the fight on this front. It’s so confusing.

Eagerly awaiting definitive word as to what ‘hold mode’ does to your ICE’s mpg, as I anticipate that will be a major point for congested locales in the future — if you Don’t plug in, what is the hit on hiway efficiency to ‘charge up’ for your arrival in London, for instance.

Best case: usw 20 kWh (2 Liter) fuel for 8,7 kWh battery refill.

It is an EU compliance car that also qualify for California Green HOV sticker…

I don’t know how many of thoe HOV stickers ar left (got renewed recently with more quantity), but it is clearly a “sticker car”…

I reviewed the S550e a month ago. It was a very pleasant drive. Very competent. Excellent comfort. The infotainment system is not my favorite. Outstanding rear seat — much better than the 2016 Cadillac CT6 and BMW 7-series. It has some features simply not found in other cars.

Yawn, complete waste of money

Car looks BLAH and 18 mile of EV range…. watt a joke.

Only makes sense if delivered with wireless charging.