The Mercedes-Benz G-Class is getting an electric sibling called the EQG, and last week the company confirmed some information about its powertrain.
At a media drive for the 2024 S 63 E Performance, Michael Schiebe, CEO of Mercedes-AMG, said, "we will mount four electric motors very close to the wheels just to make sure the off-road capabilities, again, are raised to another level."
Schiebe also said the EQG will be available next year. Previous reports suggested it could come late this year.
The EQG has been rumored to have four electric motors since it debuted as the EQG Concept in 2021. The concept had four motors near the wheels, as well as a 2-speed transfer case for off-road gear reduction. However, this news confirms there will be four electric motors near the wheels, though Schiebe made no mention of a 2-speed gearbox.
The news indicates the EQC could have in-wheel hub motors like the Lordstown Endurance electric pickup truck. However, there has been no indication that Mercedes is working on hub motors. Hub motors would saddle the EQG with unsprung weight at the wheels, which is a detriment to ride quality.
The EQG could use the brand's new axial flux motors, which it showed on the Vision One-Eleven supercar concept shown last week. Mercedes is working on these motors and Shiebe said they weigh a third of what a radial flux motor weighs, take up a third of the space, and are more efficient. Lucid uses axial flux motors; each is capable of producing up to 670 hp and is smaller in size than the motors in most of the competition.
Vehicles such as the Rivian R1S and R1T, which also boast plenty of off-road prowess, also have four motors. Those motors are located in-board on each axle, sitting next to each other in the center of the vehicle. It sounds like the Mercedes solution could split the difference.
Mercedes-Benz EQG prototype
Last year, Mercedes released a video of an EQG prototype completing a so-called "G turn" in which it spun in place. A Rivian R1T prototype made the same type of turn, though it was called a "tank turn," and it was enabled by spinning the motors on each axle in opposite directions. Rivian has since canceled development of that feature.
Mercedes has not released information on how much power the motors will make or how big the battery pack will be. However, the company has said the EQG will have all the off-road capability of the gas-powered G-Class. The precise control of the power offered by an electric powertrain and the individual control afforded by four motors indicate it could make it even more capable.