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Mercedes already has a good selection of electric vehicles either already on sale or very close to going on sale, but all of its smaller models are based on ICE models. The current entry point into the Mercedes EQ lineup is the EQA, a small crossover that is basically the current GLA with a big battery in the floor.
The manufacturer already has a bespoke EV platform to underpin its larger offerings (EQE and EQS), MEA (short for Modular Electric Architecture), but it needs one for its smaller models too. Called MMA (Mercedes Modular Architecture), it will be used in models in the automaker’s so-called Entry Luxury lineup, the equivalent of today’s front-wheel drive lineup.
However, the EVs that will replace today’s compact Mercs will be more expensive and upmarket propositions. According to Markus Schafer, Mercedes’ Chief Technology Officer,
The vehicles of our entry-luxury MMA platform will be based on the MB.OS software architecture for the first time in 2024. They will feature many innovations that stem from the tech program behind the Vision EQXX. As part of this, we are refocusing our portfolio and reducing at the same time, complexity. We aim to achieve this with a smaller number of alternatives. Instead of seven, we plan to offer four models in this segment.
So the first of these MMA-based EVs will debut in 2024, and it could be a posh Volkswagen ID.3 rival, not a crossover (although a crossover equivalent will surely be offered). It will be the electric equivalent of the current A-Class, so we shouldn’t expect Mercedes to just offer it as a hatchback; we would expect to see at least a sedan, maybe even something more overtly sporty.Regarding the look of its future models, we can look at studies like the Vision AMG concept or the EQXX production preview for reference.
Both of these vehicles, even though they may seem different, have one important common trait – they are both very low-slung, have an elongated rear section that tapers off and generally a teardrop-like aesthetic. It’s also worth noting that these future small electric Mercedes models will not be direct replacements of today’s A-Class, B-Class, CLA and others (or their electric equivalent models like the EQA pictured above).
The automaker will likely create new model lines that are differently positioned to better fit into the EQ lineup.
The number of compact body styles offered will be reduced from seven to four as Mercedes shifts its focus and more towards the higher end spectrum of its range. This seems to be a trend among luxury automakers these days – they are increasingly moving upmarket where you may sell fewer vehicles, but the profit margins are better.