Mercedes-Benz Sets Sights on Tesla with Plans for Four EVs by 2020

Mercedes-Benz B-Class electric

Mercedes-Benz is targeting electric vehicle maker Tesla as it hatches plans to bring four pure electric to market by 2020.

The report comes to us from British car magazine Autocar, who spoke to “company insiders.”

Despite going after the manufacturer of the most recognizable electric vehicles on the road right now, Benz’s plan is to base its new EVs on existing models, a less-expensive approach compared to designing new, dedicated EV platforms: there will be C- and S-Class sedans, and GLA- and GLC-Class crossovers, all of which will reportedly boast new-generation lithium-ion batteries good for a driving range of about 400 km.

Though the cars will be based on those existing models, the vehicle platforms (MFA for the front-drive GLA and MRA for the other three, which begin as rear-drivers) will be modified for EV duty. Benz says the first evidence we’ll see of this new electric push is a hydrogen fuel-cell version of the GLC-Class due to go on sale in certain markets next year.

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Chris Chase

Chris Chase

As a child, Chris spent much of his time playing with toy cars in his parents’ basement; when his mother would tell him to go play outside, he made car sounds while riding his bicycle or dug roads for his toys in the flower garden. Now he gets to indulge his obsession playing with real cars that make their own cool noises, and gets paid for it.