2023 Mercedes EQS 580 SUV — Outselling the sedan version

By Paul Borden

(August 31, 2023) Mercedes-Benz has set an ambitious goal of going “all electric” with its vehicle fleet by the end of this decade with the caveat of “where market conditions” allow, which a cynic (ahem!) might suggest gives the Germans an out should buyers prove to be reluctant to participate in this automotive revolution.

According to a news release from the company, it will launch three new electric-only architectures in 2025 to add a mixture of medium and full-size passenger cars, AMG models, and light commercial vehicles to its fleet.

You don’t have to wait, of course, as Mercedes currently offers a fleet of EVs that include a compact SUV (EQB), a midsize crossover SUV and sedan (EQE), and a full-size crossover SUV and sedan (EQS).

When it comes to sedans vs. SUVs, the electric versions seem to be following the overall trend with SUVs gaining market share while sedans continue on a slow but inexorable slide.

The Mercedes EQS 580 SUV is outselling the EQS 580 Sedan even though the sedan had a year’s head start after debuting a year earlier.

Through the first six months of this year (only quarterly sales are available), Mercedes sold 5,373 EQS SUVs compared to 4,655 EQS sedans, according to numbers from the website goodcarbadcar.net.

Likewise with the EQE, the SUV version outsold the Sedan by a margin of 2,528 to 2,066 even though the Sedan had a one-month jump over the SUV, which didn’t get to showrooms until April of this year.

Electric vehicles overall, which would include EQB and EQE models, accounted for 15 percent of Mercedes’ sales in the second quarter, according to the company.

As I wrote last spring, the 2023 Mercedes EQS 580 SUV takes luxury and performance to the extreme. dual electric motors provide enough punch for a pleasing driving performance with the 536 horsepower and 633 pound-feet of torque moving its 6,228 pounds from zero to 60 mph in 4.5 seconds.

The 56-inch glass Hyperscreen that stretches across the front dash houses a wealth of tech features that lets you do everything from adjust the radio to reset the hue of the ambient lightning and more.

Alas, buttons to operate those functions are on the small side, especially those on the steering wheel. It takes tiny fingers to focus in on exactly what you are trying to adjust. Also, if you go to the touchscreen, finger prints could cloud the view, especially when sunlight is pouring into the cabin.

Comfort and convenience features include navigation, wireless Smartphone integration with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, Burmester premium surround sound system, heated and ventilated front seats, power second-row seats, and keyless go and entry with push-button start.

Standard safety features include active blind-spot assist, lane-keeping assist, parking assist with a surround view system, high beam headlight assist, brake assist, and Attention Assist (it even alerts you if the camera doesn’t have a clear view of the driver’s eyes).

The 2023 Mercedes EQS 580 SUV starts at $125,950. Options like heated rear seats, a black micro-fiber headliner, an acoustic comfort package, and a package of features like multi-contour front seats with massage function, and four-zone climate control ran the final total of my test vehicle to $138,940 including the $1,150 destination and delivery charge.

What I liked about the 2023 Mercedes EQS 580 SUV: The exterior has the typical Mercedes distinctive looks and the interior is particularly stunning. The Hyperscreen display gives the dash a futuristic look without being funky. The cabin is comfortable and quiet. Range is excellent, and acceleration is brisk. Cargo space is generous.

What I didn’t like about the 2023 Mercedes EQS 580 SUV: The learning curve to all the tech features is on the steep side. Some hard-wired knobs would be welcome in place of the tiny buttons, but Mercedes designers apparently go for appearance over convenience. Never did find out how to change the navigation screen from the “satellite view” to the standard map. Fortunately, many functions can be activated by using the “Hey, Mercedes” voice system. If you go for talk or sports radio, you’re on the losing side because there is no AM band.

Would I buy the 2023 Mercedes EQS 580 SUV? Frankly, the technology is a bit overwhelming and so is the six-figure price tag. But if it is in your budget, you’d be doing yourself a disservice if you didn’t check it out.