Mercedes-Benz is a premium brand, and the three-pointed star frequently commands higher prices than its German or Japanese competitors. However, when Mercedes revealed the starting prices for its newest 2023 EQS SUV, it made us wonder: Does it have what it takes to compete for the title of “King of Electric SUVs” and unseat the current industry standard set by the incredible, yet insane (literally) Tesla Model X?
The Tesla Model X, on the other hand, has some of the worst quality issues of any modern production car (electric or otherwise), and some of the flaws are inappropriate for an electric SUV that starts at $126,490 — or under $145k if you opt for the hotrod Tesla Model X Plaid. Even though the 2023 EQS SUV starts at $105,550 (plus $1,150 in destination fees), we’re confident it won’t have faulty doors, inconsistent panel gaps, or poor build quality like the Tesla — it is, after all, a Mercedes-Benz.
Flagship electric SUV
We previously reported that the 2023 Mercedes EQS SUV would be available in two trim levels in the United States: the EQS 450+ SUV and the EQS 580 4MATIC. The former has a single rear-mounted electric motor that produces 355 horsepower, 419 lb-ft of torque, and a claimed driving range of 305 miles (WLTP cycle). Meanwhile, the top-of-the-line EQS 580 4MATIC has two electric motors, all-wheel drive, and a range of up to 285 miles. It also produces 536 horsepower and 633 pound-feet of torque.
Mercedes-Benz, however, has entered the fray with its latest press release, which includes the EQS 450 4MATIC SUV. It sits between the EQS 450+ and the EQS 580, but the automaker has yet to reveal the full specifications of this mid-tier model. We do know that each of the three EQS SUV trims will be available in Premium, Exclusive, and Pinnacle sub-variants.
2023 Mercedes EQS SUV: Pricing and trims
Standard leather upholstery, a power tilt and sliding panoramic glass roof, heated and ventilated front seats, 20-inch wheels, a Burmester premium audio system with Dolby Atmos, rear axle steering, 64-color interior ambient lighting, and the MBUX 12.8-inch infotainment touchscreen are all standard on the EQS 450+ SUV Premium, which starts at $105,550. It also comes with the Driver Assistance Package and a Parking Package, which includes a surround-view camera. The EQS 450 4MATIC and 580 4MATIC have the same level of standard equipment and start at $107,400 and $127,100, respectively.
The Exclusive trim, on the other hand, includes a head-up display, rapid-heating seats, multi-contour front seats with massage, four-zone climate control, and the Air Balance Package, to name a few features. The EQS 450+ Premium starts at $109,800, the EQS 450 4MATIC at $112,800, and the EQS 580 4MATIC at $131,350.
Finally, the Pinnacle trim adds an MBUX rear tablet, comfort rear headrests, an executive second-row seat package, and a second-row armrest with wireless charging to the lineup’s top model. Furthermore, the MBUX Hyperscreen comes standard with the EQS 580. The Pinnacle begins at $111,800 (EQS 450+), $114,800 (EQS 450 4MATIC), and $133,350 (EQS 450 4MATIC) (EQS 580 4MATIC).
If you were hoping to save money on the EQS SUV by taking advantage of the updated EV tax credits under the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), we have bad news: Because the MSRP of the Mercedes-Benz EQS exceeds $80,000, it is ineligible for federal tax credits in the United States. Buyers with adjusted gross incomes of more than $150,000 (individual), $225,000 (head of household), or $300,000 (married joint return) are also ineligible for tax credits (via Kiplinger). The irony is that you must fall into one of those categories in order to afford the all-new Mercedes EQS SUV.