Power in the B-Class Electric Drive comes from a 132-kilowatt (177-horsepower) electric motor spinning the front wheels, and the driving range on a single charge of its 28-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery is an estimated 85 miles. The setup was developed together with Tesla Motors [NSDQ: TSLA] and should spirit the B-Class Electric Drive from 0-60 mph in 7.9 seconds. Top speed is limited to 100 mph.
The vehicle can be charged from any standard domestic power socket, and using a 240-volt charger you’ll be able to top up the batteries with enough juice for a 60-mile drive in just two hours. At the same time, you may experience increased driving range thanks to energy regeneration during coasting and braking.
Being based on the regular B-Class compact MPV sold overseas for the past couple of years, the B-Class Electric Drive features all the premium touches and safety gear typical of a car wearing the three-pointed star. The standard equipment package includes a head unit with 5.8-inch color display, navigation system, and a special function that allows remote interaction and remote configuration of the vehicle.
The driver, for example, can use their PC or smartphone to access the vehicle via the internet and check metrics such as current state of charge and mapped-out vehicle range. In addition, the planned route can be displayed, showing at a glance where the vehicle can be recharged along the way, should this prove necessary. There’s also a host of Mercedes safety gear including radar-based warning systems, brake assist and a parking assistant.
Sales of the B-Class Electric Drive commence this summer, initially in the U.S. Other markets will receive the car later in the year.