As motor and battery technology continues to improve, Plugin-hybrids in the EV range have become better with each passing day. That is why the latest iteration of the plug-in hybrid from Mercedes-Benz could come with some remarkable electric-only range.
The Automotive News reports that the Mercedes Benz GLE Class plug-in hybrid scheduled for release in 2020 has been designed for a 100-kilometer/62-mile EV range. The auto news website cites an interview given by the head of Research and Development at Mercedes Benz, Ola Kallenius, who will soon be taking over from Dieter Zetsche the current CEO of Daimler.
No other combustion engine has ever had that much range, with even the best of the Mercedes Benz PHEVs topping out at the 50-km/31-mile range. The current maximum of 50-km/31-mile by Mercedes Benz was the benchmark for any manufacturer wishing to qualify for China’s soon to be launched EV-credit program.
The numbers are not that important though. Speaking to Automotive News, Kallenius said that their latest range estimate was in line with the WLTP standard that is soon to be implemented in the European Union. Even though the figures are not that far off from those recommended by the American EPA, there is some incongruence, with the WLTP generally having higher estimates as compared to the EPA. Nonetheless, the 50 miles range estimated by the EPA is still a respectable figure.
It may be the best in its class once it makes its debut, but it will likely be knocked off its perch in no time. According to Automotive News, BMW latest plug-in hybrid model that is scheduled to be released before 2020 will come with a 100-km system. On the other hand, the Polestar will be a 600-plus horsepower plug-in hybrid electric vehicle that according to sources will have mileage closer to the 90-mile range. But given the manufacturer recommended price of $155,000, the car is definitely not playing in the same league as the GLE.
Electrification will still be of some benefit to some of the GLE-Class models that are not plug-in hybrids. The debut of the 2020 GLE-Class was accompanied by an announcement from Mercedes-Benz that clients will get better efficiency and performance from the GLE350 4Matic, depending on how they use the innovative EQ Boost 48 volt mild hybrid system that was just added to the car. The Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class model is expected to make its debut next year.