Mercedes confirms electric B-class will go on sale in the UK in 2015, with prices expected to start at around £32,000 (before the £5000 government grant)
30 April 2014

Sales of the Mercedes-Benz B-class Electric Drive will start in the UK in the first quarter of next year, with prices starting at around £32,000.

Mercedes has also recently confirmed pricing for the US version of the model, which will go on sale for $41,450, or around £24,600. The difference in price between US and UK versions is likely to be down to increased specification and equipment lists on European models.

After the UK government's £5000 plug-in vehicle grant, which was recently extended to at least 2017 as part of a £500 million funding boost, the price of the B-class Electric Drive could drop to around £27,000. That means the car will cost some £1320 more than the all-electric BMW i3, which has a list price of £30,680, falling to £25,680 after the plug-in grant.

The new B-class Electric Drive has a claimed all-electric range of around 85 miles. Powering the 1750kg EV is a front-mounted electric motor which makes 177bhp and 250lb ft of torque. Official performance figures show a 0-60mph time of 7.9 seconds and a limited top speed of 100mph. Electricity is stored in a Tesla-made lithium-ion battery.

While visually the Electric Drive appears indistinct from standard B-class models, it gets a newly-styled front bumper and new body-coloured cladding within the wheel arches. Both of those features could be incorporated into the facelifted B-class when it goes on sale later this year, following a debut at the Paris motor show in October.

In the US, the B-class Electric Drive comes with a range of safety features, including Collision Prevention Assist, Blind Spot Assist, Lane Keeping Assist and Active Parking Assist. All the options available for the conventionally powered B-Class, including voice control and Mercedes' Comand infotainment system with internet access will be available for the Electric Drive as well. 

The B-class Electric Drive is being made at Mercedes' plant in Rastatt, Germany - the same factory which currently makes the A- and B-class and the GLA.

Boyan Marinov

Our Verdict

Mercedes B-class
The B-class straddles the C-segment and MPV markets better than most models

Change is coming to Mercedes’ small-car range, and this new B-class is the first taste of it.

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Comments
7

30 April 2014
Why not wheel out the episode of Tomorrow's World from 1976 when they announced electric cars would be the future? May as well because nothing's moved on since then. Yes, sure. A B class for £27,000. Pointless.


30 April 2014
Don't think it pointless. Ok, electric cars still have a way to go in terms of range, but its great to see them starting to get into normal cars. The range and recharge times will improve in time. Think of this as a car for those who want an electric car, but need more space than an i3 or Nissan Leaf. It is still a niche market, but without pioneering cars like these, it will never improve.

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Woohoo! Page 2 and more are now back open for business Biggrin

30 April 2014
Interesting that this car is using a Tesla battery pack, Tesla buys all its battery cells from Panasonic. Tesla is unique amongst electric car makers in using thousands of small cells called 18650, they are 18 mm dia and 65 mm long, their 85Kwh battery has 7000 or 8000 of individual cells depending upon whose figures you believe. All other manufacturers use bigger cells in smaller quantities. Electric cars will either succeed or fail to sell in their millions on the development of better battery technology or not. Remember the world had electric cars over 100 years ago but the batteries of the time were not improved but the petrol/diesel engine made huge leaps in power and efficiency.

maxecat

30 April 2014
Electric cars are non starter for me, I'd be vexed if I found one.

30 April 2014
..... a non starter full stop. The technology never advances to the extent that it's useable and the power (and pollution with it) has to come from someone burning something. So what's the point?


AV

30 April 2014
Only name check is chic Slicon Valley darling Tesla. No mention of any shared components with the China market Denza car announced last week. That car is a thinly disguised electric B Class co-developed by Daimler Benz and BYD. Have D-B really developed two conceptually identical cars with two entirely separate partners, or are they coy about upsetting status conscious westerners with disclosure of BYD content in this new B Class variant?

1 May 2014
for a car the size of B-Class. There is little doubt that electric cars have their appeal limited to a small fraction of the buyers (perhaps with the exception of Tesla Model S and BMW i3 who offer performance and handling better than conventional cars for the money) yet the EVs remain an intriguing choice. This appeal would broaden as more car makers enter the race and sort out range and charging issues.

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