SINGAPORE – Like the Opel Zafira-e Life and BYD M3e, the Mercedes-Benz EQV300 is an electric multipurpose vehicle (MPV) which is based on a commercial vehicle platform. But unlike the other vehicles, the EQV is almost as refined as a passenger car.
The EQV measures 5,140mm long, 1,928mm wide and 1,901mm tall, with a 3,200mm wheelbase. Its tailgate is almost 1,200mm long, which is thankfully motorised. So are its two rear sliding doors, which can be controlled via switches on the centre console.
The EQV is among the largest MPVs you can buy, sitting somewhere between the popular Toyota Alphard and the gigantic Hyundai Staria. But among electric cars, it is the largest one on the market now. Alas, its height means a number of carparks are inaccessible.
Its dimensions translate to roominess, which is unattainable even to limousine owners. The local variant is equipped with two “captain’s seats” in the middle row, which come with massage functions and can recline like cinema seats.
Adjustments are mostly motorised, except for a manual lever which slides the seats forward and backwards. As far as manual adjustments go, this lever is quite effortless.
The last row of an MPV is usually for children. But in the EQV, three adults can be accommodated comfortably. An air suspension system with adaptive damping ensures progress is smooth for all, a trait which distinguishes the EQV from other MPVs.
Such a sizeable car is usually sluggish. While the EQV will not win drag races, it is eminently drivable, thanks to a huge helping of instantaneous torque.
Mercedes declares a 12.1-second century sprint, but the car feels swifter than that. In fact, there is hardly any situation where it feels underpowered.
Activating the adaptive cruise control is an exc...