2014 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive
  • 2014 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive
  • 2014 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive

  • 2014 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive
  • 2014 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive

  • 2014 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive
  • 2014 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive

  • 2014 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive
  • 2014 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive

  • 2014 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive
  • 2014 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive

  • 2014 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive
  • 2014 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive

  • 2014 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive
  • 2014 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive

  • 2014 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive
  • 2014 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive

  • 2014 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive
  • 2014 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive

  • 2014 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive
  • 2014 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive

  • 2014 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive
  • 2014 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive

It's finally time to plug in the first production Mercedes-Benz-branded electric vehicle in the US. The Daimler division, which also sells a few of its battery-electric Smart ForTwo vehicles here in the states, has officially launched sales of the Mercedes-Benz B-Class ED. Even better, the US will be the first market in the world to give the general public access to the new plug-in.

As with many other EV debuts, the flyover states will have to wait a bit. Mercedes-Benz is only selling the B-Class ED in 10 coastal states, including California, Oregon, New York, New Jersey, Maryland and Maine, and hasn't said anything about when a broader release might happen.

Earlier this month, the US Department of Energy rated the B-Class electric with an 87-mile single-charge range, which is comparable to that of the Nissan Leaf and BMW i3. The other shoe dropped, though, when it was revealed that the model has an 84 miles per gallon equivalent rating, which is about 30 percent less then both of those other EVs. The culprit for the model, which puts out 177 horsepower and has a base price of $41,150, is its heavier curb weight. Check out Autoblog's "First Drive" impressions here.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 20 Comments
      Spec
      • 1 Year Ago
      Seems like it is an OK conversion and that is a reasonable price. But it is kinda hard to get excited about since it is not very efficient and has no DC-fast charging system.
        Marco Polo
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Spec
        @ Spec Not really a conversion. The B was originally designed to be produced as an EV, but MB shelved the plans until now, instead producing the ICE version..
      Levine Levine
      • 1 Year Ago
      For $42k you can own a MB with 85 EV mile range, which about the same as a Leaf and less than a Soul EV. Unless you love MB, you're better off owning Model S; it has better styling, roomier, much better range, and more tech stuff.
      Koenigsegg
      • 1 Year Ago
      I'd rather get another Smart ED over this ugly van thing
      brotherkenny4
      • 1 Year Ago
      That's actually quite a good price for the first offering. I suspect that it will do nothing but improve in price and performance in subsequent years too. Still disappointing that they don't have a broader release.
        Spec
        • 1 Year Ago
        @brotherkenny4
        Well . . . it is just conversion with a Tesla drivetrain.
      DaveMart
      • 1 Year Ago
      EVS: You'll find a working link here: http://www.greencarcongress.com/2014/07/20140721-egolf.html Now all we need is someone to figure out what is going on with specific energy, as the relative figures make no sense to me! The Panasonic batteries in the VW are projected to improve from 25Ah to 36Ah, so as you say that is around a 45% improvement, a lot more than I said. I got confused worrying about the massively lower specific energy VW are getting than Tesla manage using Panasonics! I should still have noticed that the graph on page 17 clearly shows that the range is projected to increase from 180km to 265km from better batteries alone, and that other improvements go on top of that. Eyeballing the chart though by the time the 26Ah batteries are available the other improvements aren't expected to add a lot, which is good news in a way as perhaps it indicates that better batteries won't take too long to arrive and so big changes in weight won't have had time to happen. Very roughly by the time that the 36Ah battery is available the other improvements seem to have pushed it up from 265km to 280k, so the overall increase is around 55% They reckon they can
      DaveMart
      • 1 Year Ago
      Mercedes tell us that the S-type PHEV will initially have a range of only 30km on the NEDC cycle. That is understandable with the weight of the car, but: 'Oddly, the car will need to increase its electric range to 50km within two years so that it can meet China’s minimum range rules for plug-in hybrids. Dr Uwe Keller, Mercedes-Benz’s technical project manager for powertrain hybrids explained that the Magna Steyr-built battery pack had room for developments, which were coming thick and fast. “We don’t just want an electric car, but the best real hybrid. Its role is to deliver a car that is everything, not just an electric car. “We will have to fit a larger battery for the Chinese market in two years, approximately, because of their laws so we will look at larger capacity in the same power packet and space,” he explained. http://www.motoring.com.au/news/prestige-and-luxury/mercedes-benz/s500/benz-s500-hybrid-plug-in-to-be-wireless-44657 So it appears that Mercedes also thinks it can get ~66% better performance out of its batteries, although a PHEV battery is not the same as a BEV battery and has very different specifications and chemistry. That is going to be without improvements in many of the respects that VW is counting on, as for instance the body is not going to be redesigned to lose weight in two years.
        DaveMart
        • 1 Year Ago
        @DaveMart
        Sorry, the VW link to expected battery performance using the Panasonics they have chosen is here: http://www.volkswagenag.com/content/vwcorp/info_center/en/talks_and_presentations/2014/07/FM_04_07_14.bin.html/binarystorageitem/file/06_2014-07-04+Presentation+Barclays+London+Steiger+TOP+COPY.pdf Pages 17 & 18. They expect around 66% improvement over the next few years split 50:50 between better batteries going from 25Ah to 36Ah and Aerodynamics, weight etc as detailed on page 17. As I note in the comments here though: http://www.greencarcongress.com/2014/07/20140721-egolf.html I can't work out from the figures given why the E-Golf at the pack level is apparently so heavy per kwh relative to the Tesla, or even the Leaf. As I note in the comments on GCC: 'The only thing that I can think of is that perhaps VW have done the same as Mercedes, and aren't counting a lot of the pack which is used to ensure good SOC, and so the pack is actually maybe 30kwh, not 24kwh, and this is simply good, conservative engineering. Its an odd way of describing it though if this is the case.'
        EVSUPERHERO
        • 1 Year Ago
        @DaveMart
        “We don’t just want an electric car, but the best real hybrid. Its role is to deliver a car that is everything, not just an electric car." Wow, David Martin, I do not like this guys statement. Dr Uwe Keller is like, "were gonna do something different were going to put a motor in this EV, it's gonna be a real hybrid, how is that for thinking outside the box." Prius has been doing it for years. What is that about 17 miles range on this here Plug in hybrid? Jolly good for China and their mandate. I would say PHEV and BEV, as far as specs and chemistry, are getting closer and closer as range on PHEV's grows. Indeed some day, if they don't already, I expect they will have a battery that applies itself to do both. Cheaper to manufacture one type of cell than two if the car company is making them like Nissan. Any BEV battery with high cycle life could be used in a PHEV now, it would just be overkill as PHEV electric motors tend to be smaller, or they use to be anyway. GM's, Volt, is an exception. Meh, cycle life could be a issue in a PHEV, then again large longevity buffers on the top and the bottom of the pack would make a BEV battery last a long time in a PHEV. Speaking of GM, did they really need the A123's for the Spark? It is the quickest of the compliance EV's out their so those A123's are doing their job. LG chem now says they have a 200 mile battery. I can't remember if Spark will switch to LG Chem like the Volt now or not? 66 percent is big time, agreed, it is to bad they don't make that stride in EV batteries but then again maybe LG Chem has for GM.
          DaveMart
          • 1 Year Ago
          @EVSUPERHERO
          BTW I reckon VW have designed their new platform to allow precisely that performance increase for the PHEV, up to around Volt levels of range. So if they can hit similar improvements in the specific energy as for the BEV battery pack, then a 45% increase in range from perhaps 22 miles or so on the EPA would give around 32 miles of EPA range, perhaps enough for most, certainly in Europe. They liked the Volt so much they copied it, but only after the better batteries arrive, and with better accomodation from the start.
          DaveMart
          • 1 Year Ago
          @EVSUPERHERO
          I thought GM were switching everything to LG, and a prime suspect for the 200 mile range BEV is the Spark, but I could be wrong. I doubt a convergence of battery types.. If they can also improve the specific energy of the PHEV batteries, and perhaps as important the energy density to enable them to be compact, then cars could have a small 12kwh or so pack, or perhaps the 9.7kwh or so that VW specify, and get most of their running around on that. A lot of people just don't do the average daily mileage to make it worth while lugging a big pack around. Progressing the weight and bulk of a PHEV pack is not the same thing as for a BEV, but progress is perhaps just about as quick.
      EVSUPERHERO
      • 1 Year Ago
      Wow how did you do that? Your pasting of the website address went all the way over the Reply button. If the VW batteries are improving from 25 to 36 percent isn't that ruffly 45 percent improvement or more? If that is true, they make up the other 19-21 percent in arrow dynamics. If we knew how many cells, charging spec and at what AH capacity we could calculate the KWH of the Merc pack.
      kinasi
      • 1 Year Ago
      for the same price the i3 is a much better choice, the i3 also has rapid charging, this mercedes does not
        Spec
        • 1 Year Ago
        @kinasi
        Yeah, between the two, I would probably go with the i3 despite its looks because BMW actually moved the ball forward with their new CFRP and REx technology.
        MTN RANGER
        • 1 Year Ago
        @kinasi
        The i3 and B Class have very different design intentions. The B Class offers more space and seating for five, more miles per charge (104 vs 81), power seats, easier to replace regular tires, in a normal looking vehicle. The i3 offers a sportier drive, arguably better tech features, lighter and more efficient, greener construction, optional DC fast charging and REx. So it really depends on which features a person values higher.
        paulwesterberg
        • 1 Year Ago
        @kinasi
        Good luck finding an SAE Combo charger.
        Spec
        • 1 Year Ago
        @kinasi
        There are a few CCS chargers. Not many, but the cars only just now became available.
      Gabe Ets-Hokin
      • 1 Year Ago
      I hear sales of the ED are limp and face stiff competition.
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