Mercedes to launch more PHEVs

Mercedes to launch more PHEVs

Mercedes is enhancing the line-ups of both the A-Class and B-Class models with a couple of new plug-in hybrid (PHEV) variants.

Under Merc's EQ Power label, the A 250 e and B 250 e are introduced. The former comes in both hatchback and saloon guises, while the latter is one-size-only. All 250 e models pair the 1.33-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine, rated at 160hp and 250Nm, to a 75kW (101hp)/300Nm electric motor, for system maximum outputs of 218hp and 450Nm. That means the A 250 e hatch will do 0-100km/h in 6.6 seconds, with the Saloon close behind at 6.7 seconds and the B 250 e just a tenth out at 6.8 seconds, with top speeds of 235km/h (A 250 e hatch and B 250 e) or 240km/h (A 250 e Saloon). All three will run to 140km/h on electric power alone.

For the more important eco-stats, fuel consumption is pegged between 1.4 and 1.6 litres/100km (176.6mpg and 201.8mpg), with CO2 emissions anything from 32g/km (A 250 e Saloon on small wheels) up to 36g/km (B 250 e on larger alloys). The lithium-ion battery's capacity is 15.6kWh, with a WLTP combined range of anything between 56- and 69km, according to which model you've gone for. Prices are not confirmed for Ireland as yet.

Beyond this technology, the eight-speed dual-clutch transmission houses the permanently excited synchronous electric motor and all the 250 e cars do without a 12-volt starter, the electric unit instead powering the combustion engine to life. The A 250 e and B 250 e models can all be charged with AC or DC, with a 7.4kW wallbox on AC capable of taking a full charge in one hour 45 minutes. On a fast-charging DC connection, 10-80 per cent SOC of the battery is possible in just 25 minutes.

Cleverly, Mercedes is claiming the PHEV A-Class and B-Class models have lost hardly any boot capacity, compared to their stablemates fitted only with internal combustion engines. The reason for this is that the 250 e cars' exhaust systems end centrally underneath the vehicle, with the rear silencer housed in the transmission tunnel. That means the fuel tank can then be located in the axle installation space, creating room underneath the rear seats for the high-voltage battery.

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