mercedes-eq can boost your ev's power for yearly fee

Hot-take time: there’s finally a logical subscription-based automotive feature on the market. There. I said it. I meant it. I meant it specifically about Mercedes-Benz’s EQ arm offering, for US$1,200 plus tax annually, Stateside, the option to boost the power output from its suite of electric vehicles from 20 to 24 per cent, depending on model.

When you go to the Mercedes-Benz USA site, its marketing team writes “Unleash enhanced performance for your car.” What exactly is going to be “unleashed”? Well, EQ’s “Acceleration Increase” paid feature bumps up horsepower and torque, lifts overall performance, improves acceleration from zero to 60 mph (96 km/h) by between 0.8 and1.0 seconds, and adjusts the electric motors’ curve. If you pony up the money, selecting the Dynamic drive mode gets you the added power.

[We’ve reached out to Mercedes-Benz Canada to see if this subscription service will be offered on this side of the border, and will update this piece when we receive a reply. —Ed.]

Here’s the breakdown of what you do have, and what you could have, based on model.

  • Mercedes-EQ EQE 350 4MATIC: go from 288 horsepower to 349 horsepower, and from a zero-to-60-mph (-96-km/h) time of 6.0 to 5.1 seconds
  • Mercedes-EQ EQE SUV 350 4MATIC: go from 288 horsepower to 349 horsepower, and from a zero-to-60-mph (-96-km/h) time of 6.2 to 5.2 seconds
  • Mercedes-EQ EQS 450 4MATIC: go from 355 horsepower to 443 horsepower, and from a zero-to-60-mph (-96-km/h) time of 5.3 to 4.5 seconds
  • Mercedes-EQ EQS SUV 4MATIC: go from 355 horsepower to 443 horsepower, and from a zero-to-60-mph (-96-km/h) time of 5.8 to 4.9 seconds

With modern EVs already boasting staggering power figures, and with their instant torque, you’ve got plenty of get-up-and-go. Unless you’re taking a Mercedes EV to the track, do you really need that extra 88 horsepower in an EQS, or any road vehicle for that matter?

Let’s say you do want it – US$100 a month is a relatively small price to pay compared to what any Mercedes-EQ costs you to buy, to get some extra juice. And you’re only committed for 12 months. Having myself driven the 580 with its bonkers power, I can’t understand why anyone would want more. What modern streets are you driving on that you need so much power? You’ll also likely see your range deplete faster with the additional power boost.

The brand’s EVs will still perform well and give you the rapid acceleration EVs are known for. You’re still getting plenty of power. You’re still getting all the luxurious features that an EQ comes with. You’re still getting the three-pointed star on your key fob and steering wheel.

So is US$1,200 a year really worth it to drop your zero-to-60-mph time unless you’re tracking it? It’s not worth it for me, but I will admit at least I can see how some EQ drivers would want that, and that’s absolutely fine. Whether you’re in favour of this service or not, it’s still better than BMW’s heated-seat subscription disaster.

Keyword: Mercedes-EQ can boost your EV's power for yearly fee

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