Ah, first looks. That first time you see a new model in its not-quite-finished prototype form and realize what a new and interesting thing it is.
With the Mercedes-Benz B-class, you’ll have no need to worry about tensions between the lower and upper echelons of the Mercedes-Benz lineup as this is the automaker’s sole electric vehicle unless you count the Smart Fortwo. Thankfully we won’t have to wait long to see it—the new Mercedes EV will arrive in dealerships this June.
So let’s get acquainted! A recent first look article by Autoweek praised the B-Class for the exceptionally well-constructed nature and quality of its interior materials and finishing. Even though Autoweek was only evaluating a prototype version, it was clear that the top brass in Stuttgart wanted the press to have the most impressive model possible.
The B-Class is specified as seating five adults with 17.1 cubic feet of storage space in the rear. Up front is the Tesla electric motor, no small coup since Tesla—founded by genius billionaire Elon Musk—has gone through 11 years of trial and error in producing electric vehicles. Mercedes-Benz has been a supplier to Tesla of internal parts, so it makes sense that Mercedes-Benz would have close ties with the California-based company.
Tesla’s experience pays off with a motor that produces 174 horsepower and 251 lb-ft of torque. Those numbers mean the B-class won’t rattle at high speeds, nor lack the power to be aggressive when necessary. The car has a 100 mph top speed and a 90 mile range before it needs recharging.
Ninety miles should be plenty for commuters in the triangle since only 25 miles separates Raleigh from Durham. There are dozens of electric charging stations all over the area including 14 in downtown Raleigh alone. With a three-hour charge time, you could easily recharge over night or even before lunch if you have a station near your workplace.
Stay tuned for updates as we draw nearer to its June launch.