The newly announced Mercedes-Benz strategy was envisioned to "focus on winning where it matters" - dedicated electric vehicles and proprietary car software.
The German manufacturer is finally turning towards mass electrification using proprietary EV platforms instead of modification of existing ones, shared with conventional models.
There will be two EV platforms:
- Electric Vehicle Architecture (EVA) - from 2021
For large cars - saloon and SUVs.
It will be used in four new models: EQS (2021, 700 km of WLTP range), EQE, and the EQS-SUV (2022) and the EQE-SUV
- Mercedes-Benz Modular Architecture (MMA) - from 2025
For compact and medium-sized cars.
Multiple further models to use MMA, but none has been yet announced.
Mercedes-Benz intends to invest more in the development of electric drive. New in-house developed eMotors are on the horizon, which will be combined with "sophisticated inverter and high voltage technology".
Similarly, a lot of resources will be directed to in-house battery R&D "complimented by close partnerships with key strategic partners CATL, Farasis and Sila Nano". Mercedes-Benz expects that new materials and production processes will increase range, reduce charging time and cost.
The company has also announced a new Vision EQXX technology program with the goal to build an EV with "spectacular efficiency and range". What could it be, 1,000+ km/620+ mi WLTP?
"Mercedes-Benz has tasked its engineering group with pushing the boundaries of electric range and efficiency with a cross-functional, multi-disciplinary team based in Stuttgart, supported by specialists from the Mercedes-Benz F1 HPP group in the UK, who bring expertise in eMotors plus motorsport-inspired development speed."
Results from the Vision EQXX project will be quickly implemented in the series production cars.
AMG, Maybach and G
One of the most interesting things is also an official announcement about the Mercedes-Benz sub-brands - AMG, Maybach and G that will also go electric.
Brief info in the press release does not tell whether we are talking about BEVs or PHEVs, but we assume BEVs.
"New electric products coming for AMG, Maybach and G."
"AMG is set for the next level with high-performance electrification, starting in 2021. Its links with Formula 1 will also intensify next year, to reflect its identity as Mercedes’ high performance sub-brand. Maybach will pursue global opportunities, doubling in size and going electric. The demand for the legendary G is ahead of current capacity. The legend will grow, and will electrify. With the EQ brand, Mercedes-Benz will address a new audience with progressive high-technology products, built on dedicated electric architectures."
Another point of interest is the software. Mercedes-Benz has decided to develop in-house its own MB.OS operating system for cars. It is expected to be ready for 2024.
"In the area of car software, Mercedes-Benz has announced its own proprietary MB.OS operating system. This will be developed in-house and is scheduled for launch in 2024. It will allow Mercedes-Benz to centralize the control of all the vehicles’ domains and also its consumer interfaces. Proprietary software development will allow greater speed and more frequent updates, and will be designed around scalable architectures that will control future development costs."
Finally, profitability - a new focus area for Mercedes-Benz, and probably tons of other manufacturers around the world, shocked by the COVID-19, as well as very high expenses on all the new R&D projects, from EV platforms, through EV models, software and autonomous driving systems.