Mercedes’ Electric Hot Hatch Concept Is Not-So-Subtle Jab At BMW i3s

Mercedes-Benz had something for every type of car enthusiast at the International Motor Show Germany.

In addition to its much talked about Project One hypercar, Mercedes on Monday unveiled the Concept EQA, the first compact concept to come from its electric vehicle sub-brand. The three-door hot hatchback gives a clear picture of what Mercedes’ future EV platforms will look like.

The EQA has all-wheel drive, with one electric motor powering the front wheels and another powering the rears, and an impressive range of roughly 248 miles. That could vary, though, as the EQA’s vehicle architecture utilizes scalable battery components, allowing Mercedes to develop models with more or less range.

For perspective, BMW’s recently announced i3s, a sportier version of the current i3, only can travel 80 miles on all-electric power between charges. What’s more, the i3s is less powerful than even its non-performance-oriented EV rivals, whereas the EQA’s power output dwarfs those of even the hottest gasoline-powered hatches, as it has the potential to produce as much as 268 horsepower and 368 foot-pounds of torque.

It’s not as though the i3s can compete with the EQA in terms of looks either. The BMW is reminiscent of a wide-body Chevrolet Bolt, while the EQA looks like an even more stylish version of the updated Hyundai Elantra GT.

Knowing what Mercedes had in store for IAA, its executives must have been laughing their heads off somewhere in Stuttgart when BMW revealed its take on an electric hot hatch.

Thumbnail photo via Daimler

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