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Motoring Extra

Mercedes charges to the front


The stunning Mercedes-Benz VISION EQXX.

The stunning Mercedes-Benz VISION EQXX.

The stunning Mercedes-Benz VISION EQXX.

With the unveiling of their VISION EQXX concept car, Mercedes-Benz has accelerated its goal to lead in electric and set benchmarks to sustainable mobility.

The VISION EQXX is taking electric-powered motoring to an entirely new level promising a range of more than 1,000 kilometres on a single charge from a battery small enough to drive a compact vehicle.

Promising to be the most efficient Mercedes-Benz electric vehicle ever built, the VISION EQXX claims energy consumption figures of less than 10 kWh per 100 kilometres, equating to more than six miles per kWh.

With a power output of around 150 kW, other key features include a 0.17 drag coefficient and ultra-thin roof top solar panels that generate up to an extra 25 km range.

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By ripping up the automotive engineering rule book, Mercedes-Benz has built a software-driven electric car that re-imagines the road trip for the electric era.

At the same time, it presents a highly progressive interpretation of the fundamental Mercedes-Benz principles of modern luxury and Sensual Purity. Rather than simply increasing the size of the battery, the cross-functional, international team focused on maximising long- distance efficiency.

They pulled out all the stops in drivetrain efficiency, energy density, aerodynamics and lightweight design.

‘The technology programme behind the VISION EQXX will define and enable future Mercedes-Benz models and features,’ says Markus Schäfer, Chief Technology Officer responsible for Development and Procurement.

‘As a halo car, the VISION EQXX firmly establishes Mercedes-Benz as the brand that pairs luxury with technology in the automotive world and beyond. And the way we developed it is as revolutionary as the vehicle itself.

‘VISION EQXX has seen the best minds from our R&D centres work together with engineers from our Formula 1 and Formula E programmes.

They are proving that innovations from motorsport – where powertrains are already highly electrified – have immediate relevance for road car development. We are challenging current development processes with innovative spirit and outside-the-box thinking. This truly is the way forward.’

In addition to its ground-breaking energy efficiency, it offers meaningful answers to pressing issues.

For instance, sustainable materials throughout cut the carbon footprint considerably. Its UI/UX features a radical new one-piece display that comes to life with responsive real-time graphics and spans the entire width of the vehicle. Other elements of the UI/UX help the car and driver work together as one, and even use technology that mimics the workings of the human brain. And the software-led development process that delivered it revolutionises the way electric cars are designed.’

The VISION EQXX is packed with efficiency improvements that push the envelope with a mixture of advanced technology and talented teamwork.

The outcome will be a road-legal research prototype that delivers more range from less energy, more tangible luxury and convenience with less impact on nature, and more electric mobility with less waste. A raft of digital tools and a software-led approach also delivered more car in less time.

From clean sheet to on-the-road in just 18 months, The VISION EQXX is part of a technology programme that can adapt innovative technologies for series production faster than ever before and demonstrates Mercedes-Benz transformation into an all-electric and software-driven company.

Motorists: Ensure you are visible

Road safety and breakdown organisation GEM Motoring Assist is urging motorists to always ensure they’re as visible as possible.

There are large numbers of drivers using vehicles with defective headlights, causing a significant risk to themselves and others on dark days and wintry nights. Cars with only one headlight mean the drivers have only 50 per cent of the light they should have, and the missing light risks causing confusion to other road users who may think there’s a motorbike approaching, says GEM.

Parking and slow speed manoeuvring is also made riskier, as the absence of light means impacts with parked vehicles, walls, posts and trees are much more likely.
A GEM spokesperson urged drivers to use dipped headlights on every journey and not to assume that a car’s automatic light settings would guarantee safety and visibility. ‘Drivers who consider that lights are for use only in darkness are causing danger to themselves and others,’ she said. Don’t rely on automatic lights in belief that you are properly lit up as you may need to switch on your headlights manually.