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First drive: 2022 Mercedes-AMG EQS 4MATIC +

Flamingos are not naturally pink. They are born of a sort of grayish color and then turn pink thanks to their diet of brine shrimp and algae. It takes a while to develop the shade we’d expect from watching older episodes of Miami Vice.

Why do we speak of tropical waders in reference to an ultra-luxurious sedan with world-destroying power? Because, on the whole, EVs did not originally present themselves in the market as anything resembling a performance vehicle. Decades ago, the first efforts were usually soulless transport devices designed with one purpose: to reduce the consumption of fossil fuels.

Many things have changed.

AMG engineers in Affalterbach are known to have lent their talents to various Mercedes models, imbuing cars – and, lately, SUVs – with the performance associated with the types of machines Lewis Hamilton drives (in the absence of interference and interference from the FiA). Now they turn their attention to the Mercedes electric vehicle catalog, a portfolio that includes the EQS, a towering four-door flagship that sits at the top of the company’s all-electric food chain.

At the heart of this Mercedes-AMG EQS are two electric motors – one at the front, one at the rear – which were inspired by speed enthusiasts at AMG. All versions of this hot EQS deliver a total output of 658 horsepower, with a peak engine torque of 750 lb-ft, which is available from the moment its driver flexes his Gucci-clad big toe. But, as Ron Popeil said, there is more. When a boost function in Race Start mode is engaged, power climbs to 750 of Germany’s best electric horsepower and brings the AMG EQS from standstill to 100 km / h in a record 3.4 seconds. Note well: AMG is hedging its bets by saying that the 107.8 kWh battery must be at a charge level of at least 80% to perform this trick.

In practice, this detail does not seem to matter. Accelerating from a neutral point, with all four tires pressing against the California tarmac without a short beep, pushes you back into the driver’s lavish throne as if a deity is sitting on his couch after a long day spent at the driver’s seat. do not respond to anyone. prayers. These are AMG specific motors with new windings to ensure stronger electric current and higher rotational speeds. Engineers call them “permanently excited synchronous motors,” a term that your author will love endlessly. He wants all the motors to be constantly energized.

AMG’s decision to add lightness to the warmer EQS with rear axle steering. From 60 km / h, the front and rear wheels pivot together, virtually lengthening the car’s wheelbase to provide increased driving stability during quick clips and during quick lane changes. At speeds below 60 km / h, the rear wheels spin in the opposite direction to the front wheels, making the AMG EQS vastly more maneuverable and agile than its 205-inch (5,216 mm) overall length suggests. . We found the effect particularly positive when navigating in a parking lot, as the steering angle of up to nine degrees reduces the turning radius measurements to the compact class level. Livery drivers around the world, often tasked with navigating the narrow confines of a hotel parking lot, will rejoice.

While we’re not entirely sure the AMG EQS will go into service as a limousine with the historic frequency of an S-Class. Your NBA-sized author has had no trouble finding enough legroom in the back of this car, but headroom was paramount thanks to a sloping roofline designed in pursuit of wind-proof aerodynamics. In the latter case, AMG was successful – this car has a drag coefficient of just 0.23 – but did so at the expense of two-meter humans who could sit upright in the rear cabin. No such complaints are lodged in the front row of chairs, which offer the level of luxury one would expect from a machine starting at $ 184,200.

In fact, one could call the interior of the EQS an antithesis to the cold, austere cabin of a Tesla Model S. The fit and finish is impeccable, and it would be an insult to simply describe the materials as first. quality. The rug makes you want to kick off your shoes and wiggle your toes in the plush-covered floor, while every padded touch point is covered in thick, buttery leather. AMG calls the massive expanse of digital real estate the dashboard a hyper-display, though it’s actually made up of three individual screens placed under a curved piece of glass that spans the entire width of the car. Lighting effects punctuate the interior, including a strip at the top of the hyper-screen that can dance red and blue in response to temperature demands from the ventilation system. The effect is startling, as if you were sitting at the Ops or Conn station of a spaceship.

Speaking of which, let us geek out for a moment while trying to describe AMG’s efforts to imbue the EQS with athletic levels of auditory theater. Fans of the Trek franchise may remember the supernatural and aggressive baritone made by the USS Vengeance when he caught up with the Enterprise at high speed as he fled the Klingon homeworld. When all of the AMG EQS settings are put into Sport + and its driver lets go of the hammer, this float luxury sedan makes an incredibly equivalent sound. The only things missing are threats from Kahn and Admiral Marcus.

AMG does more than just play artificial sound in the passenger compartment via the audio system. He brings special speakers, shakers and a sound generator to the party. Its tone and intensity correspond to the driving mode (Slippery, Comfort, Sport or Sport +) or can be controlled via a button on the steering wheel which is normally reserved for removing exhaust notes in gasoline AMG models. Everything can be cut, leaving the driver only his thoughts and the sound of the wind; this, with power delivery and air suspension placed in their sportiest settings, was your author’s favorite setup while sculpting smooth, twisty California roads. The feeling of cracking at high speed with only a whisper of wind emanating from the side mirrors was a unique but satisfying experience. It’s a heavy, 2,655 kg (5,840 lb) car that promises to be heavy in the corners but creates imposing authority when accelerating to grab that opening in the heavy traffic of Los Angeles.

Any other quirks? It’s technically possible to lift the hood of this EQS, but AMG isn’t making it easier by moving the control away from its standard location as a lever on the driver’s left leg. Even after finding the release function, it was no use as it was just like visiting the mechanical floor of a fancy hotel: there is nothing to see except industrial objects and the owners don’t want to from you anyway. The latter is clearly indicated by the fact that AMG has placed a blade-shaped door on the left front fender whose sole task is to provide a place to refill windshield washer fluid. Since there is no frunk, like on the Lucid Air or the Tesla Model S, owners of an AMG EQS are likely to never open their car’s hood.

Not offering cargo space in this area was a deliberate decision on the part of the designers, allowing them to reduce this part of the car to a space just big enough for the air conditioning and other mechanical gubbins. This then allowed the team to push the interior of the EQS to outsized dimensions, including ample rear cargo space rivaling most SUVs in length and width if not height.

If you’re wondering why this hottest and most expensive variant of the EQS doesn’t have numbers after its model name – a cheaper, less powerful version is called the EQS 580 – thank you (or blame ) naming conventions in other markets and a propensity for some corners of the rich set to oversimplify the meaning of numbers. Our test vehicle will be called the AMG EQS 53 in other countries, but there is an unspoken concern that some North American consumers might not want a “lower” number added to their car if it does. lives higher on the totem pole.

Range is always a big question mark for electric cars, and AMG claims this EQS can travel up to 586 kilometers on a single charge according to the WLTP measurement system. In the real world, we started the day with a fully charged battery and a listed maximum range of 332 miles (531 km). After four hours and around 300 km of driving split between spirited mountain attacks and heavy interstate traffic, we ended up with a listed range of 109 miles (174 km).

This is the automaker’s in-house performance arm’s first battery-electric production car, and we believe it is a good example of the go-fast brand. After all, AMG is known for its speed and performance, just like a flamingo is known to be pink, even if it doesn’t start life that way.

2022 Mercedes-AMG EQS 4MATIC +

BODY STYLE: 4-door sedan, 5 passengers

CONFIGURATION: Two electric motors, all-wheel drive

MAXIMUM POWER: 750 hp, 750 lb-ft

TRANSMISSION: Single speed

LOADING CAPACITY: 580 liters

BATTERY SIZE, range: 107.8 kWh, 586 kilometers

PRICE: $ 184,200

Website: www.mercedes-benz.ca


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