The 2021 Mercedes EQA has been revealed. It's the new entry-level electric car from the Mercedes-EQ division and closely related to the Mercedes GLA crossover. Full details of the initial front-wheel-drive EQA 250 version have been released, but Mercedes has also confirmed that there will be higher-performance models with all-wheel drive, plus another with a WLTP-ratified range of more than 500 kilometres.
Mercedes EQA 250
Until then, we have the EQA 250. It gets a 140kW asynchronous electric motor on the front axle, developing up to 190hp and 375Nm of torque. Mercedes quotes a 66.5kWh usable battery capacity, with an 11kW on-board AC charger. On a DC rapid charger, the EQA's battery can be charged at up to 100kW, for a quoted 10-80 per cent top up in 30 minutes. This model gets a WLTP range of 426km, which works out as an electrical consumption figure of 17.7kWh/100km. In terms of performance, the EQA 250 does 0-100km/h in 8.9 seconds and tops out at 160km/h. Its kerb weight is quoted as 2,040kg.
First cousin of the Mercedes GLA
The EQA's roots are obvious, as it is essentially a restyled Mercedes GLA. Nonetheless, the EQA shares its distinctive 'Black Panel' grille replacement style with the larger Mercedes EQC, including an LED strip joining the headlights. The change is effective, though it appears that only the bodywork ahead of the front bumper shut line (which runs behind the headlights) is different. Around the back, there's a similar approach, where a reskinned tailgate brings with it a full-width LED light bar and repositioned - and more prominent - Mercedes star. The numberplate moves to the restyled bumper insert, which no longer has to accommodate exhaust outlets.
Though Irish specifications have yet to be confirmed, we know that the minimum wheel size fitted to the EQA is an 18-inch alloy, LED High Performance headlamps with Adaptive Highbeam Assist are standard, as is an electrically opening rear hatch, reversing camera and a version of the MBUX infotainment system with navigation, etc. The Edition 1 variant you see in our picture gallery gets distinctive copper-coloured wheels and other unique equipment, but we don't believe that will be offered for sale in Ireland.
More on the EQA's cabin
As far as we can tell from the initial images, the EQA shares its interior with that of the Mercedes GLA almost unchanged. There are new backlit trim pieces in the dashboard and the MBUX system gets an EQ-specific rosé colour scheme, which is subtly picked up on elsewhere, but it's fundamentally unchanged. Well, it is in terms of its design. Scrutinising the interior dimensions reveals that, while the front seat area is the same size as before, the EQA's rear seats offer up less headroom and legroom than in the GLA. This is due to the packaging of the battery pack underneath. Unfortunately, the boot of the front-drive EQA also holds less than that of the front-drive GLA. The EQA's measures 340-1,320 litres, depending on whether you have the rear seats folded down or not, vs. 435-1,430 litres for the GLA.
Focus on efficiency rather than battery size
Interestingly, in the launch material for the EQA, Mercedes-EQ states that it sees 'the key to a bigger range not in ever-larger batteries, but in systematic improvement in the efficiency of all vehicle components.' It backs that up with significant development on the core GLA vehicle, including a new round of aerodynamic refinements that lead to the introduction of a smooth and almost completely enclosed underbody, special wheels, a completely closed cooling air control system and the shapes of the front and rear bumpers.
A heat pump is standard, too, using waste heat from the electric powertrain to control the cabin temperature. This can be set before departure via the on-board MBUX system or the Mercedes me app. Meanwhile, the navigation system comes with 'Electric Intelligence' that takes into account charging times along a route to suggest the fastest way to a destination.
Irish pricing for the Mercedes EQA
Irish prices for the Mercedes EQA have not yet been confirmed, but the German pricing makes it more expensive than the top diesel model before grants etc. In Ireland, that could mean a price for the EQA 250 of under €40,000 when EV supports are taken into consideration.