Test Drove the Mercedes EQS - Disappointed
I test drove the Mercedes EQS 450+ yesterday. And wow, I was really disappointed.
I was so disappointed with the first car I drove, I insisted on driving a
second one just in case the first EQS I drove was defective. I ended
driving a silver version and a blue version.
Full disclosure, I'm an investor of companies that manufacture competitors to the Mercedes-Benz EQS. Obviously, Mercedes-Benz makes great cars. But the EQS is not exactly "great" out of the box.
Here are my gripes.
1. Build quality, build quality, and build quality. Tesla is known to have poor/mediocre build quality for its cars. Its paint is unusually soft, scratches easily, and polishes easily. Exterior fit and finish can sometimes be off. Interior fit and finish can also sometimes be off. While this Mercedes EQS had reasonable paint quality (lots of orange peel, but that's the norm these days), the fit and finish of its interior wasn't great. The door armrest which you pull to close the door creaked. Overall, you felt like you were in a disposable item. Much of the interior felt "Playskool" built (Playskool is a company that makes playsets for children out of large flexible plastic pieces, the flexibility gives it a low quality feeling but the flexibility makes it safer for young children) and once the child outgrew the playset, it gets donated.
2. The drive. The drive was uninspired. The car felt like a sensory deprivation tank, but you had no connection to the road. For instance, a Rolls-Royce vehicle can feel like a sensory deprivation tank, but the driver is still getting adequate communication about the car and the road. The steering on the EQS was too loose and not weighted enough. Also, the 450+ was actually quite slow in acceleration. Even under heavy acceleration, one doesn't feel the g-force nor your head sinking into the headrest. The 450+ isn't the most powerful version (330 horsepower in the 450+), but it is the one with the longest range (about 350 miles range by USA EPA standards). Braking with blending in regeneration also felt less natural than a Tesla. Suspension dive didn't feel quite right under braking neither. Suspension tuning isn't at 100%.
3. Fake emotion. The EQS has fake sounds that add emotion to the driving experience. The car sounds like a spaceship when you accelerate. However, the sound is not tuned to the accelerator pedal properly. For instance, when you hit the accelerator pedal, the sound starts; but when you let off the pedal, the sound continues as if you're still accelerating. This creates a bit of panic for a moment because you're wondering if you're going to crash into the car ahead of you. Then you realize you aren't accelerating and the sound effect is communicating bad data to you. This sound effect needs to be remapped to respond to real-time accelerator pedal input.
4. The car is not a beautiful machine to look at. No angle shows great beauty.
5. The rear seat doesn't offer enough thigh support. The rear cushion needs to be higher and deeper. I'm not a tall person, and I found my knees swinging in the air and no cushion under my thighs. The leather in the back isn't perforated and it makes the leather in the back look very plastic-like even though it's the same leather as the leather in the front - just the front seats have perforation holes.
6. Computer tablet screen was awful. Bad UI (User Interface) and bad UX (User Experience). Necessary features are buried in sub-menus. I still can't find the air suspension raise button. AC controls are a little laggy and I couldn't find the button to turn off the AC compressor if I wasn't in AUTO mode. Mercedes-Benz has a team in Silicon Valley designing the UI/UX and I'm surprised that they let this go through. Then again, in all fairness to Mercedes-Benz, Tesla has recently updated their Operating System and have made the UI much worse. This is the problem when buying a car that the factory can update. They can change something you use so drastically and make it worse! I wished I could change my Tesla back to its old operating system.
7. There were other problems that I've chosen not to list, in order to keep this list compact.
I'm just really surprised how bad this car is. All I can say is if you're looking for a nice electric luxury car, consider a different brand. If you still prefer a Mercedes-Benz, then get a petrol or diesel powered S-Class, those are fantastic! I haven't driven the latest one, but the previous ones are both fantastic to drive and to ride in.
I was hoping for an alternative to a Tesla, as I find the brakes and certain features of the Tesla to be not good enough. But I didn't find the EQS to be an alternative. I will definitely not be acquiring an EQS until they fix these major issues. In the meanwhile, I'll continue to drive a gas guzzling AMG.
This armrest creaks and flexes like a Playskool kid’s toy playset. Also, the way the door swung was just not dampened correctly. It would swing too quickly and sometimes stop too suddenly. Further tuning of the hydraulic door dampers are necessary!
Something isn’t right in this photo. My eyes are bothered. What could be wrong in a brand new $100,000 Mercedes-Benz S Class?
Oh! I see it.
Oh Mercedes! I so wanted to like this car. I was ready to forgive the odd shape and front-wheel-drive proportions. But alas, there were too many gripes.
What are your thoughts? Has any WatchProSite member ordered an EQS? Anybody reconsidering one after my review?