The Floodgates are Open for Mercedes-Benz

11.30.16 - Mercedes-Benz Generation EQ Concept

Recently we saw Mercedes-Benz show off their first EV platform at the Paris Motor Show which is being called the Generation EQ Concept. This vehicle is made to carry the sophisticated elegance of Mercedes-Benz in an EV model that is meant to rival the i-Brand from BMW. It might feel as if Mercedes- Benz is a little late to the party, but having these two automaker duke it out for the lead in any technology is usually great for the auto industry and us as consumers. Now it appears Mercedes-Benz is ready to make yet another electric commitment.

As if the few days since the Paris Motor Show didn’t give us enough of a shock to see Mercedes-Benz enter the EV race, they have already secured an agreement to enter Formula E racing as of the fifth year in existence. That would make Mercedes-Benz one of the twelve entries in the 2018/2019 season of the Formula E racing which has been growing since it began only a couple years ago. Did we miss something or have the floodgates actually opened wide for Mercedes-Benz as they enter the market with their first EV, which is only a concept at the moment?

There will be some differences when the fifth season of the FIA Formula E comes to be. Currently teams are allowed to use two cars per driver for each event to allow for quick changes from one to the other for the driver and less of a need to charge batteries during the race. Starting in the 2018/2019 season there will only be one car allowed for each event per driver, which means batteries will have to be portable and on hand to refuel drivers during pit stops along the race. This should make the driving even more interesting on the track.

Currently there are only ten teams that compete in Formula E racing and these ten are expected to continue to be part of the equation in this fifth year with two new companies, Mercedes-Benz and one other. Now that Mercedes-Benz has shown us what the EQ will look like and tossed their hat in the ring for the Formula E racing, we can become seriously excited by what the possibilities are from this automaker as they are now taking EV technology seriously.

How seriously is Mercedes-Benz about their EV technology? Their goal mirrors that of Volkswagen, which also showed up in Paris with a new EV model. The plan is to use the EQ platform to build a minimum of ten models and make this platform flexible enough to be used on compact sedans all the way up to the large SUVs from the brand. The growth and interest in Formula E has interested Mercedes-Benz and as a participant in many of the other racing markets of the world, entering this racing series is a fantastic way to gain some excitement around their battery technology and offer the EV models for the road and track that we want to admire and enjoy.

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