a show of force against Tesla

It is certainly the most spectacular electric car concept in the real world. Mercedes has just put on a show of strength by rolling its Vision EQXX over 1,000 kilometers from Germany to the French Riviera on a single charge.

Mercedes Vision EQXX // Source: Mercedes

Mercedes backed its advances in electrification, the German automaker rolled out its prototype: the Vision EQXX traveled more than 1,000 kilometers from Germany to the French Riviera on a single charge.

1,000 kilometers and another 15% on arrival

The Vision EQXX prototype traveled from Sindelfingen near Stuttgart via Switzerland and Italy to the Mediterranean coastal town of Cassis in France. The sedan’s lightweight chassis and aerodynamic profile allowed it to complete the trip with a battery half the size of its massive EQS sedan.

Mercedes Vision EQXX: a show of force against Tesla
Mercedes Vision EQXX // Source: Mercedes

With the EQXX, Mercedes is trying to show that they are capable of surpassing the American company when it comes to electric technology. The prototype made the trip at more than 100 km/h and there was 15% charge left on arrival. A run of 11 hours and 32 minutes without any charge, so we can estimate an autonomy beyond 1,100 kilometers.

Mercedes Vision EQXX: a show of force against Tesla
Mercedes Vision EQXX // Source: Mercedes

Impressive as that feat may sound, it’s not the car’s most stunning achievement. If you do the math — dividing the 1,008 km by the 86 kWh used — the EQXX’s on-road efficiency works out to just 8.7kWh/100km. This is an extremely low figure; for comparison, the Model 3 consumes 14 to 19 kWh/100 km.

Mercedes Vision EQXX: a show of force against Tesla
Mercedes Vision EQXX // Source: Mercedes

On this journey, the Mercedes Vision EQXX passed through regions where the temperature was only 3 degrees Celsius – cold temperatures being a big problem for the batteries – which makes the feat all the more impressive.

New benchmarks in energy efficiency

The design of the EQXX, seen at CES 2022, sets new benchmarks for energy efficiency. To reduce dependence on auxiliary systems, those that impact range, the vehicle’s chassis base (thus the underside of the vehicle known as the underbody) of the EQXX channels air to help evacuate the waste heat. The battery itself features a new anode composition that improves its density, in addition to an arrangement to reduce its weight and provide more space for the cells.

Mercedes Vision EQXX: a show of force against Tesla
Mercedes Vision EQXX // Source: Mercedes

Active aerodynamics is also a major design focus of the EQXX. More concretely, a number of motorized shutters can remain closed to allow air to flow in the most efficient direction, only opening to cool car components when needed.

According to the car manufacturer’s own measurements, the Vision EQXX offer a truly impressive drag coefficient of just 0.17. For comparison, the Tesla Model 3 has an aerodynamic drag coefficient of 0.21. That’s why the EQXX sports such a dramatic silhouette, especially at the rear. The EQXX also has a retractable rear diffuser, this is used to avoid making the car narrower or longer than necessary.

Tesla does not aim for 1000 kilometers of autonomy

Earlier in March 2022, Elon Musk again confirmed that 644 km on a single charge was the current maximum for electric cars. If he claims to be able to manufacture a vehicle with a range of nearly 1000 km, for the founder of Tesla, this would be nonsense and a risk for the car.

As Elon Musk explained on Twitter, Tesla could have produced “a Model S with a range of 600 miles (about 966 km)” one year ago. But that would have been a contradiction in terms, he said.because 99.9% of the time you would be dragging around unnecessary battery mass, which degrades acceleration, handling and efficiency (…) Even our car with a range of over 400 miles (about 644 km) offers more what most people will never use“.

Note however that Tesla intends to market the new Roadster which is announced with a range of 1000 kilometers.

Tesla Roadster

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