2019 will be the ‘year of the plug-in hybrid’ for Mercedes, as it gears up for the launch of 10 EQ-branded electrified models by the end of the year.
Models like the C-Class, E-Class and S-Class are already offered with an electrified powertrain, which in the case of the C-Class and E-Class is combined with both petrol and diesel engines.
The German automaker will expand its plug-in hybrid model range with the GLC and GLE SUVs, as well as the PHEV version of the A-Class, which will combine the 1.3-liter four-cylinder turbo petrol with a 90hp electric motor, according to Autocar. The same powertrain will be offered on the B-Class and the upcoming GLB SUV.
Mercedes plans to have the entire range electrified by 2022. Its models will be divided into three separate categories: the EQ Boost 48V mild hybrids, the EQ Power plug-in hybrids and the all-electric EQ range.
Plug-in hybrids are important for Mercedes as they will help showcase the benefits of a fully electric car to customers by being able to travel on electric power alone for short journeys.
Claus Ehlers, Mercedes’ powertrain strategy boss, says that the uncertainty over the speed of EV uptake in the market means that internal combustion engine powered cars will still play a major role in the future.
Mercedes expects electric vehicles and PHEVs combined to account for around 40 percent of its total sales by 2025. Depending on the EV take rate, the German manufacturer estimates that all-electric models will account for between 15 and 25 percent of its total sales by then.