Mercedes EQS challenges the S-Class in Luxury Drag Race

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The Mercedes EQS came as the zero-emission variant of the S-Class range-topping luxury sedan. It’s luxurious, innovative, sporty yet robust. But is it faster than the S itself on the drag strip?

Mat Watson of Carwow sits in the new Mercedes EQS 450+ and the new S 500 is right beside him, both ready for the drag race that fans have been waiting for. The fight is on. It’s the fight of petrol versus electric.

The EQS got the biggest battery a production car has ever received, sporting a capacity of 108 kWh. The electric motor, mounted on the rear axle, delivers 330 horsepower and 570 Nm of torque. It is the entry-level version of the EQS family, while the EQS 580 4MATIC+ sits at the top with more power and more torque.

The electric luxury sedan tips the scale at 2,480 kilograms, with the batteries weighing heavy. Even heavier than the long-wheelbase S-Class, at 2,065 kilograms. The S 500 gets the 3.0-liter 6-cylinder turbo petrol engine with 435 horsepower and 520 Nm.

In the UK, the EQS starts at 99,995 pounds, while the S 500 is about 10,000 pounds more.

“Very relaxing defeat,” Mat Watson concludes after the first failed attempt. “A very obvious one.” The second one isn’t much better either, so the S-Class wins twice.

The combustion engine car completed the quarter mile in 13.4 seconds, while the electric sedan covered the same distance in 14.3 seconds.

Mercedes EQS and S-Class compete in a rolling-start race

They try a rolling start from 30 mph and the EQS wins. The S-Class engine had to do with the 9-speed automatic transmission that changed gears “in a very relaxed luxurious manner.”

The first rolling start starts at 50 mph and the car goes into the sportiest model. The EQS seems ready for takeoff. A second try sees the same result.

A brake test from 70 mph puts the S-Class ahead. Behind, actually, as it stops slightly faster. It’s a good result for the EQS that tips the scale at almost 2.5 tons, half a tone heavier than its combustion engine counterpart.