The Mercedes Benz EQA electric subcompact SUV is basically a Mercedes Benz GLA underneath all that metal which means that Mercedes only adapted the GLA for an electric powertrain. The EQA is not designed on a separate chassis due to costs reasons and the only true standalone chassis EV Mercedes offers is the EQS.
The EQA is positioned as the entry-level Mercedes EV for those who primarily drive in the city. This does not mean that the EQA is not capable of highway driving, but rather the fact that it’s far from being the best highway cruiser Mercedes offers.
The EQA is indeed based on the GLA, but Mercedes gave it brand new front and rear-end styling which also includes a light bar at the back. However, the EQA is not all that practical, both when compared to its petrol-powered cousin and all the other electric SUVs on the market.
The EQA seems to be a bit boring to drive because Mercedes really didn’t put all that much emphasis on the driving experience. The EQA comes in a few different trim options, but the most popular one is likely going to be the EQA 250.
Mercedes EQA – The electric side of things
The greatest difference between the GLA and the EQA is the powertrain as the EQA offers an electric engine and a battery while the GLA offers a combustion engine and a fuel tank. The entry-level EQA 250 offers 255 miles of range, the EQA 300 4MATIC offers a tad bit more and the range-topping EQA 350 4MATIC is more or less the same as the 300.
The EQA sits somewhere in the middle as far as outright range is concerned, but it’s safe to say that the EQA does offer a decent range for the money. The EQA charges at a maximum of 100 kW which is far from class-leading, but fairly competitive.
It takes around 37 minutes to charge the EQA from 10% to 80% if you come across a fast 100 kW charger. Some of its competitors like the XC40 Recharge P8 do charge faster, but not enough to make a real difference. If you charge your EQA at home through a 7 kWh wall charger, you will reach the same state of charge in 10-11 hours.
On the other hand, the petrol-powered GLA is only offered with a 2.0L 4-cylinder engine that makes more than 200hp while the range-topping AMG models make almost as twice as much.
Mercedes EQA – The driving experience
The entry-level EQA 250 makes 187hp from its single electric motor while the EQA 300 makes 225hp. The higher-end EQA 350 model makes a healthy 288hp which is fairly brisk for such a small car, especially from a standstill.
The EQA feels composed and sophisticated, but not on the same level as its bigger brother, the EQC. Double-glazing is only reserved for higher-end Mercedes models which means that you can’t get that both in the EQA and the GLA.
Given the fact that the EQA is electric, there is no combustion engine drone in the background which means that wind noise and tire noise is a lot more noticeable. A mentionable difference between the GLA and the EQA is the fact that the EQA weighs 2000 pounds more.
This makes the EQA feel a lot more substantial both in the corners and in a straight line, especially when compared to GLA AMG models.
Mercedes EQA – Practicality and luxury
The EQA is positioned as the entry-level Mercedes luxury EV which means that it should offer a Mercedes-worthy experience at a starting price of $55,300 which is almost $20,000 more than the GLA. You get the same interior as the GLA with a few EQA specific touches.
The EQA is indeed luxurious, but $55,300 can get you a more luxurious ICE Mercedes SUV like the mid-size GLE. Practicality-wise, the EQA offers less space than the GLA thanks to all the batteries. Seating space is also a bit compromised thanks to a raised floor where the batteries are situated.
Most EVs built on a separate EV chassis also offer a front trunk, but since the EQA is based on the GLA, there is no front storage compartment. All in all, the EQA is not class-leading when it comes to practicality, just like the GLA.
Should I buy the Mercedes GLA or the EQA?
The Mercedes Benz EQA is a great way to introduce yourself to the world of electric cars, but the starting price does mean that you will have to pay GLE money for an electric GLA. This is obviously a red flag for many potential buyers and that’s why most online outlets deem the EQA to be mediocre at best.
Electric luxury cars are still a bit too expensive for them to make sense on a lower down level. The Mercedes Benz GLA offers you the very same experience for a lot less money. Furthermore, it takes about 5 minutes to refuel the GLA, and that’s just the reality.
Which Mercedes EV is the best?
The best Mercedes EV is undoubtedly the EQS luxury sedan. The EQS costs upwards of $100,000 which places it directly at the very top of the EV industry. Many people deem the EQS to be the most luxurious EV on the market, and this is rather true.
The EQS is the only Mercedes EV developed on a separate EV chassis which means that it benefits from a more authentic driving experience which is not the case for all the other Mercedes EVs.
Is the Volvo XC40 Recharge a better car than the EQA?
The rivalry between the GLA and the XC40 exists both in the ICE world and the EV world. The XC40 offers a larger 78kWh battery while the EQA offers a 67kWh, yet both of these can do around 260 miles at best.
The XC40 does offer 400hp though which makes it a lot better when it comes to overtaking. Space-wise, the XC40 is also a lot better both for the passengers and cargo. However, the XC40 is a bit too expensive without any options while also being not as sophisticated as the EQA.