Mercedes-Benz off-road electric concept vehicle
Based on the Mercedes-Benz battery-electric EQC car is a concept vehicle that demonstrates the off-road ability of an all-electric vehicle. The EQC 4×4² shows that electrification at Mercedes-Benz goes further than the road network.
A team of dedicated M-B engineers took an EQC 400 4MATIC all-wheel-drive electric car gave it a high-tech ‘lift’, using multi-link portal axles. Unlike conventional axles, where the wheels are located at the height of the axle centre, portal gears drop the wheels’ centre lines, so that the body lifts up.
The 4×4² suspension is attached to the same body mounting points as the standard suspension.
With 293 millimetre ground clearance (nearly a foot in the old money), the EQC 4×4² rides more than twice as high off the ground as a production EQC (140 millimetres). Even a G-Class rides 58 millimetres lower.
Fording depth is increased by 150mm, to 400mm and the approach and departure angles – 31.8 degrees at the front and 33 degrees at the rear – are hard-core. By way of comparison, a conventional G-Class has an approach and departure angle of 28 degrees.
Reprogrammed off-road drive logic from the current GLC models delivers an improved torque curve when starting on loose ground.
Off-road 285/50 R 20 tyres look the part, as does matt-metallic gun-metal grey ‘wrap’ and 100mm-wide black wheel arch flares.
There are no plans to produce the EQC 4×42 as a production vehicle, but it should certainly dispel the myth that electric vehicles don’t have off-road ability.
Now all we need is the elusive long-range, low-weight battery pack…