The EQC 4x4² Concept becomes the third model of the Mercedes-Benz 4x4² family, after the G 500 4x4² and the E 400 All-Terrain 4x4² Concept.
From time to time, Mercedes-Benz brings out some radical concept vehicles that either push the boundaries in terms of tech or take vehicle design to the next level. And some product families, like the 4x4², demonstrate the brand's capabilities in the off-road sphere. After showcasing the G 500 4x4² in 2015 (that actually made it to series production) and the E 400 All-Terrain 4x4² concept study in 2017, Mercedes has added its first electric SUV to the 4x4² family, with the EQC 4x4².
Based on the standard EQC 400 4MATIC, the EQC 4x4² makes the switch to portal axles, in which, the wheels are not at the same height as the axle centre. Instead, they are situated much lower down on the axle hubs, thanks to the portal gears. As a result, the EQC 4x4² offers 293mm ground clearance, more than double of the standard EQC 400 (140mm). Even the G-Class' ride height is 58mm lower than that of the EQC 4x4². Thanks to the huge 20-inch wheels wrapped in beefy 285/50 R20 tyres, the EQC 4x4² stands 200mm higher than its standard sibling.
Other benefits of portal axles come in the form of better water fording depth (up from 250mm to 400mm) and better approach, break-over and departure angles – 31.8, 24.2 and 33 degrees, respectively. In comparison, the same stats (in the same order) for the EQC 400 stand at 20.6, 11.6 and 20 degrees, respectively. Plus, the extended black wheel arches have increased the overall width of the vehicle by 100mm.
The EQC 4x4² has also been fitted with dual-purpose headlamps that also act as loudspeakers. Conveniently, Mercedes-Benz refers to them as 'lampspeakers'. The lampspeakers are a part of the EQC 4x4²'s advanced Acoustic Vehicle Alert System (AVAS). The system uses intelligent 'sound design algorithms' to calculate the sounds coming from the amplifier of the sound system in real-time and the interior loudspeakers to reproduce them.
Of course, the Mercedes-Benz EQC 4x4² will remain a one-off for a long while and is unlikely to make it to production, like the G 500 4x4².