Mercedes-Benz engineers have been spotted with a prototype for an electric version of the GLB-Class. The new EV is confirmed as the EQB and will be available sometime in 2021.
Although the prototype looks like the regular GLB, the sealed-off grille and lack of exhaust pipes confirm it as an EV. Earlier testers were also seen with fully covered underbodies.
The GLB is based on the MFA2 platform found in Mercedes' latest compact range. The EQB will feature a battery-electric version of the platform. The platform will also underpin an EQA electric SUV based on the recently revealed second-generation GLA. The first dedicated EV platform from Mercedes will debut in an EQS sedan.
As for the powertrain, expect an electric motor at each axle and around 60 kilowatt-hours of battery capacity for more than 200 miles of range initially. More powertrain options could be added down the line. Trademark filings made by Mercedes with the United States Patent and Trademark Office hint at EQB200, EQB250, EQB320, EQB350 and EQB360 grades.
Mercedes' first volume EV is the GLC-based EQC due in local showrooms in the first half 2020. The EQS, EQB and EQA should follow in 2021.
Many automakers in the luxury space are working on electric compact crossovers. Volvo in October launched the XC40 Recharge and Lexus the following month launched an electric version of its UX for the Chinese market. France's DS has also just introduced the DS 3 Crossback E-Tense. Soon we'll be able to add Mercedes' EQB and EQA to the list.