With the unlikely success of the American Automotive and Energy Storage Company, Tesla Motors, in introducing electric-operating and semi-autonomous vehicles, all three German Luxury car makers (Audi, BMW, and Mercedes-Benz) have released plans to produce battery-electric vehicles with high-ranges before 2020. Whether the electric cars are SUVs, sedans, or both, they will likely be priced, sized, and designed to compete with Tesla’s Model X and S (already in production).
Now that incentives for domestic electric-car sales have been enacted by Germany, it appears that one automobile manufacturer has \ accelerated its plans. Earlier this year, Mercedes-Benz stated it has plans to add no fewer than four powerful and efficient all-electric models to its high-quality vehicles lineup. The plans were orchestrated by the outgoing R&D boss of Mercedes-Benz, Thomas Weber, who said the new electric car models will join the lineup by the end of 2020.
Among these four electric vehicles is a pair of electric sedans and two electric SUVs. The two electric sedan models launched by Mercedes-Benz will roughly be the same size as the large S-Class and mid-size C-Class diesel and gasoline models, while the accompanying electric crossover SUVs will compare to the GLC mid-size crossover utility and GLA compact hatchback vehicles. According to Autobild, Mercedes-Benz has plans to offer both inductive and plug-in charging on its entire electric vehicle lineup.
All battery-electric vehicles (with the exception of the smallest GLA-based electric model) will use underpinnings that are known to the insiders as Modular Electric Architecture (MEA), which is a derivative of the new Modular Rear Architecture (MRA) platform used currently in the S-Class, C-Class, and brand-new E-Class launched 3 years ago. This is a cheaper medium for producing electric vehicles as compared to Mercedes-Benz’s rival BMW AG, who have been investing heavily in futuristic design and carbon fiber for its new “I” brand.
The Chief Executive Officer at Mercedes-Benz and the Chairman of the Board of Directors at Daimler AG, Dieter Zetsche, stated that the brand also has plans to unveil a brand-new electric car prototype at the Paris Motor Show, which will be hosted this September. Utilizing a SUV platform, this prototype manufactured by the well-researched and experienced Mercedes-Benz team will be capable of driving about 310 miles (500 kilometers) on a single charge. The prototype will also reveal the distinctive design Mercedes has developed for setting its electric vehicles apart from the competition.
In addition to the prototype and all-electric vehicles, Daimler AG, the parent company of Mercedes-Benz, revealed plans for its first ever heavy-duty, all-electric delivery truck at the beginning of the next decade, while promising electric versions of each vehicles available in the Smart City-Car brand. The first of the new electric autos will be produced at the Bremen Factory in Germany. However, before the battery-electric models arrive, Mercedes-Benz will be releasing the first-vehicle to use the GLC Fuel Cell. Thomas Weber described the hydrogen-powered vehicle as a forerunner in alternative-fuel for cars.
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