After BMW raised eyebrows for charging a subscription for heated seats already installed in its cars, now Mercedes has a $1,200 annual plan for drivers who want extra performance from their EV.
Available for the German manufacturer’s EQE and EQS electric sedans and SUVs, the upgrade is called Acceleration Increase – and, for an annual fee equal to $100 a month – it does exactly that.
Mercedes says that stumping up the cash will “unleash enhanced performance for your car”. It also explains how the feature adjusts the electric motor’s power and torque curves, and increases the maximum power output.
More specifically, power output is increased from 215 kW to 260 kW for the EQE 350 and EQE SUV, and from 265 kW to 330 kW for the Mercedes EQS 450 and EQS SUV.
Acceleration times from zero to 60 mph are reduced, by between 0.8 and 1.0 seconds. This sees the EQE fall from 6.0 to 5.1 seconds and the EQE SUV fall from 6.2 to 5.2 seconds. The EQS’s acceleration time improves from 5.3 to 4.5 seconds, and the EQS SUV drops from 5.8 to 4.9 seconds.
It is key to note here that, despite the hefty cost and marked performance gains, no hardware is changed for the $1,200 annual fee. This is purely a software update that unlocks performance that the cars are, physically at least, already capable of. There is no word from Mercedes on what the Acceleration Increase feature does to estimated range, but a quicker and more powerful EV is usually one with a shorter range.
Mercedes says: “Fine tuning of the electric motors increases the maximum motor output (kW) of your Mercedes-EQ by 20 to 24%, depending on the original output from factory. The torque is also increased, enabling your vehicle to accelerate noticeably faster and more powerfully. This shortens the time it takes to accelerate from 0 to 60 MPH by around 0.8 to 0.9 seconds.”
The extra performance is available in all drive modes, Mercedes says. Although listed on the company’s US website, Acceleration Increase is marked as “coming soon”.