Two roads diverged in a German wood. The Mercedes S-Class will take them both.
The Mercedes S-Class is about to undergo a significant change. The standard version of the luxury car's upcoming 7th generation will remain the brand's flagship model and will see increasing electrification, including a plug-in hybrid. At the same time, but on a different platform, the German automaker will introduce an all-electric version. This one — the EQS — will be the flagship for its battery-powered EQ sub-brand.
According to Autocar, the EQS will be built on the modular electric architecture (MEA) platform. More aerodynamic than its siblings, when it reaches showrooms in 2022 it will boast a WLTP range of 310 miles (expect less in "real-world" conditions). We're told the car will be full-time all-wheel drive, with dual electric motors powering front and rear axles.
Power-wise, the publication says it will feature more ponies than the 2019 EQC. This sporty crossover SUV boasts over 400 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque. While we don't yet have a figure for the new sedan, we are told that an AMG performance variant will put out over 600 hp.
The new all-electric won't be confused with the hybridized S-Class, either. Though the latter will have its appearance updated with a new grill design and feature flush-mounted door handles, the former will take stylistic advantage of its unique architecture. Look, we're told, for a shorter hood and sharply-raked windshield. Interestingly, beneath the sheet metal we understand both versions will soften their ride with the same active suspension system.
For its part, the plug-in hybrid S-Class, built on the MRA platform, will offer an electric range of over 62 miles under the WLTP regime (again, expect fewer miles in real-world use). Autocar says it will also have the option of a four-wheel drive system featuring "fully variable apportioning of drive between the front and rear axles."