Mercedes-Benz is set to debut its mainstream electric future at the upcoming Frankfurt motor show.
The German carmaker has confirmed it will unveil a uniquely styled compact hatchback bearing the name of its newly established EQ electric car sub-brand with the issuing of an early teaser image of the new concept.
Called the EQ A, the new hatchback will become the German automaker’s second dedicated all-electric model after the EQ C SUV when it goes on sale in 2020.
While the teaser image doesn't give much away you can see that the EQ A concept sports a smooth surfaced body, black panel grille and a series of distinctive light graphics in a treatment similar to that of the early EQ C.
The EQ A - which is part of a 10 billion Euro ($14.9b) program by Mercedes to deliver 10 electric models by 2025 - would be a direct rival to the BMW i3 and the production version of the VW I.D.
Mercedes-Benz unveiled its first EQ concept, the EQ C, at the 2016 paris motor show, which was part of the brand's public debut of it dedicated electric sub-brand.
Recent trademark applications suggest Mercedes-Benz also plans more luxurious EQ E and EQ S models.
The EQ A is set to be the brand's volume seller in the EQ line-up and is expected to be priced under 40,000 Euros ($59,500).
The second EQ model is also said to play an important role in the future of Mercedes-Benz parent Daimler’s Car-To-Go car sharing division, with high level executives suggesting it will be offered on a short term drive away lease basis similar to today’s Car-To-Go scheme as part of what is described in internal Mercedes-Benz correspondence as a global mobility eco system.
Based around Mercedes-Benz’s new MEA (modular electric architecture) platform, the EQ A follows the lead of the EQ C in adopting a conventional silhouette, with a defined bonnet line at the front, traditional glasshouse housing a five-seat cabin and a hatchback style tailgate at the rear.
Mercedes-Benz has yet to detail the driveline layout, however, the German carmaker has hinted that it will be simpler and cheaper than the EQ C set up, which would mean a single front-mounted electric motor with drive sent to the front-wheels via a fixed ratio gearbox.
However, a more performance orientated set-up, with a second electric motor mounted within the rear axle assembly and providing four-wheel drive capability similar to that seen on the EQ C is also possible, according to Mercedes-Benz sources.
Sources suggest that the EQ A weould be built on a special electric car line to be established at the same production facility that builds the A- and B-Class small cars.