Mercedes parent Daimler has said it expects between 15 and 25 percent of its global sales to be EVs in 2025. The EQ entries — 10 of them by 2022 — will have body styling distinct from existing Mercedes light vehicles in their segments. The EVs are part of 50 electrified vehicles planned by 2022.
An electric version of Mercedes' A-class sedan could go on sale in the U.S. in the second half of 2020. An electric version of the GLB will launch in late 2020 and an electric version of the S class could roll out in 2020.
The EQC, with a sporty and stretched silhouette, has design cues that hint at its electric drivetrain.
In place of a conventional grille, the EQC has a large black-panel surface. An LED light strip connects the headlights. A similar design element is echoed in the rear.
Other design features at the front include the air inlet with two chrome louvers in the lower area of the front apron and the simulated side air inlets in high-gloss black.
The EQC is a nod to the modern vehicle's shift from transportation appliance to computer on wheels.
Central to the in-cabin experience is Mercedes' new multimedia system. The Mercedes Benz User Experience, or MBUX, includes improved displays and speech-recognition capabilities, along with artificial intelligence and predictive learning abilities.
The interior of the EQC takes design cues from consumer electronics. The louvered trim in the upper dashboard and door panels, for instance, resembles the cooling fins of a hi-fi amplifier.
Production of the EQC will start in 2019 at the Mercedes-Benz plant in Bremen, Germany.
"Our decision to produce electric vehicles on the same line as models with combustion engines enables us to respond flexibly to demand and use plant capacity to best effect," Markus Schäfer, Mercedes-Benz Cars production and supply chain chief, said in the statement. "In this way we can continue to ensure both high efficiency and top quality with well-proven production processes."