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Mercedes-Benz introduces 2014 B-Class Electric Drive; on sale first in US in 2014

Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive. Click to enlarge.

Mercedes-Benz staged the world premiere of the production battery-electric 2014 B-Class Electric Drive at the New York International Auto Show; a concept version had appeared last year at the Paris Motor Show. (Earlier post.)

The B-Class Electric Drive is equipped with a 100 kW electric motor with 310 N·m (221 lb-ft) of torque, with a range of 115 miles (185 km). Acceleration from 0-60 mph is under 10 s, and the top speed is 100 mph (160 km/h). The powertrain was developed in collaboration with Tesla Motors, said Dr. Joachim Schmidt, Executive Vice President Sales and Marketing Mercedes-Benz Cars, during the launch presentation.

The B-Class Electric Drive will be launched first in the USA at the beginning of 2014, where it will be the first luxury battery-electric car from Mercedes-Benz in the market, and also the first instance of the popular B-class in the US market. (The new version of the smart electric drive will be on sale 1 May.)

The B-Class Electric Drive can be recharged at any standard household power socket. In the USA, the charging time for a range of about 60 miles (100 km) is less than 2 hours at 240 V/40 A. Recuperation in deceleration mode and during braking contributes to charging during operation.

Remote checking and remote configuration of the vehicle are possible via the Vehicle Homepage. The driver can easily access the vehicle via the internet, using a PC or smartphone. In this way, it is possible to check the current charge status of the lithium-ion battery or to verify the vehicle's current range on a map. The planned route can also be displayed, immediately showing where the vehicle can be recharged along the way, if necessary. The range of connected services is rounded off with a pre-entry climate control option offering individually timed pre-heating or cooling. This pre-entry climate control system makes the B-Class Electric Drive unique in its segment.

The battery is safely accommodated in the underfloor of the vehicle for crash protection (the “Energy Space”). In addition, Mercedes-Benz has equipped this electric car with the radar-based collision warning system COLLISION PREVENTION ASSIST with adaptive Brake Assist as standard. This assistance system gives the driver a visual and acoustic warning of recognized obstacles, prepares him for braking action and assists him with the braking process as the situation requires. In this way it significantly reduces the danger of a rear-end collision.

Additional, more up-to-date driver assistance systems are also available—among them Blind Spot Assist, Lane Keeping Assist and Active Parking Assist.



Electric vehicle design always involves that quick or fast tradeoff. The reduction gear ratio chosen here allows for a fast 100mph top end but results in a disappointing 10sec to 60mph accel ramp. I would say that most drivers including myself would accept a lower 80mph limit if it came with a quicker 8 second ramp. Thoughts anyone ?


That is one reason marketing, to find out what the customer wants. You can ask them and then figure out if they are telling you the truth.

700,000 people signed up as interested in buying the Volt in 2007, only to have them sell less than 20,000 in 2012. Many people might say they favor acceleration over maximum speed only to buy the other kind. Many will say one thing in the presence of their wives and do another when they can exercise free will.

This car has 28 kWh of battery capacity and probably sells for over $40,000. We will have several all electric cars next year. Will people buy them? We will see. How did they come up with 28 kWh of capacity, who knows? Is that what the customers want, who knows?

One thing for certain, once they picked the battery capacity, the size and the U.S. market, the costs and prices came from that. Will people be willing to pay more than $40,000 for this car, who knows? We will see.

Roger Pham

0-60 mph at under 10 s is quite good and more than fast enough for any kind of driving. A 2-speed clutchless transmission can provide 8-sec from 0-60 and still top speed above 100 mph, though at that speed, range would really suffer!

People looking to buy a MB luxury car won't mind paying 40-60 k for this car. The cost saving will be up to $20,000 over the life of the car from lower energy cost and lower maintenance cost. So, BEV is great for those wanting status symbol and green icon at substantial savings from a comparable ICEV.


With all the predictions and bold statements, it would be good to have some accountability. Let's go back and add up the batting average, were this person's statements right on or not?

Talk is cheap and hot air is plentiful, but what is the purpose? Are people trying to predict the future or affect it? Maybe they just want to pretend they are right all the time.

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