It’s a landmark time to be shopping for a new vehicle—maybe the most exciting time ever in the more than 100-year history of the automobile. Why? Because the automotive market is changing, quickly and massively!
Utility vehicles of all shapes and sizes have already taken over the market, now accounting for more than half of all the new vehicles sold in the US. And their popularity just keeps on growing, with already strong sales increasing almost 12% in 2018 in a relatively stable market. At the same time, electric vehicles are beginning to make serious inroads into the established order. While they still account for fewer than 1.4% of all new vehicles sold, their annual sales more than doubled in 2018
and they continue to climb as more new models arrive on the scene from manufacturers all around the world. An Edison Foundation report based on five independent forecasts projects that EVs will account for 30% of all new vehicle sales by 2030, if not before. Given those two clear trends, it was inevitable that they would intersect, and they do just that at the 2019 New York International Auto Show.
Making its North American auto show debut is the Mercedes-Benz EQC, the first fully-electric vehicle from the company that pioneered the automobile. And yes, it is a utility vehicle. The EQC is similar in size to the existing gasoline-powered GLC crossover but it rides on a brand-new platform and features a look of its own. It is said to be the first in a full lineup of all-electric vehicles to be launched under the EQ brand. This new electric platform houses a modular, 384-cell, 80 kWh lithium-ion battery pack beneath the floor and between the axles. With the ability to fast-charge from 10 to 80 percent in 40 minutes, it is said to offer a driving range in excess of 200 miles.
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