Mercedes-Benz has unveiled new concept electric cars with the potential to surpass Tesla EVs in range. The German automaker says the “close-to-production’” concept EVs have a range of more than 466 miles per charge, exceeding the average 388-mile range for Tesla electric cars by nearly 80 miles. Electric cars with superior range will be key to addressing range anxiety, one of the largest barriers to electric vehicle adoption in the American EV market.
The Biden administration has invested billions of dollars into building a wide network of reliable charging stations, but that will likely take several years to achieve. In the meantime, EVs with greater ranges can help alleviate range anxiety by increasing the distance EV drivers can travel on a single charge. Mercedes-Benz’s Concept CLA Class will include four new EV models: two SUVs, a sedan and a station wagon. Although Mercedes did not provide specific details on when production of the new concept EVs will start, it said each model will have a range of more than 466 miles (750 kilometers), surpassing both the Tesla Model S and Model 3.
Mercedes-Benz CEO Ola Källenius said the new concert EVs represent a completely new segment of all-electric, entry-level electric cars that will allow the German automaker to appeal to a larger market. According to Källenius, the Concept CLA Class could “easily” travel from Munich to Hamburg on only one charge. The increased range will most likely attract more consumers who cite range anxiety as one of their main considerations before buying EVs.
Källenius also teased another EV model during the IAA Mobility auto show in Munich while discussing the German automaker’s G class SUV line, stating that the “little G will be electric.” This new electric compact SUV could serve as Mercedes-Benz’s competitor to the Model Y, which was ranked as the best-selling car on the globe in Q1 2023.
Company management has expressed confidence that the new electric vehicle line will reach a similar level of profitability as its petrol and diesel-powered line of vehicles. Furthermore, analysts at USB noted in a recent report that they were “strongly assured” about the German automaker’s product pipeline for the next couple of years.
Mercedes isn’t the only European automaker investing heavily in electrification. Although the EV market is still young, several carmakers from the region have thrown their hats into the electric vehicle ring. Volkswagen and Renault are set to launch small affordable EVs to compete with cheaper Chinese EV models, and BMW recently unveiled a new concept car built on the Neue Klasse infrastructure.
It wouldn’t be surprising if other competitors such as NIO Inc. (NYSE: NIO) also unveiled their own next-gen EV models in order to stay ahead in the competition for the international electric vehicle market.
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