Next-gen Mercedes EQC (GLC Electric) U.S. launch confirmed: Report [Update]

  • Mercedes EQC could be renamed to Mercedes EQC SUV for the next generation
  • Could get a bigger and efficient battery pack that delivers an EPA-est. range of ~325 miles
  • Expected in RWD and AWD variants, including hot AMG configurations
  • Could could cost around USD 60,000 onwards

Update: ‘Design’ and ‘Release date’ sections updated.

In 2021, Mercedes-Benz canceled the EQC U.S. launch after repeated postponements. All hope is not lost for fans of the three-pointed star. In this story, we’ll discuss how the company reportedly plans to launch the next-gen Mercedes EQC in America.

MB.EA-M platform

You read it right. The MB.EA-M platform may have been unheard of to most outside of Mercedes-Benz, but that’s likely to underpin the next-gen EQC. The company has confirmed that it will utilize a newly developed, dedicated EV platform called MB.EA for next-gen mid-size and large-size electric cars. understands that there will be two versions of the MB.EA platform, one called MB.EA-M, for mid-size electric cars, and one called MB.EA-L, for large-sized electric cars.


Next-gen 2025 Mercedes EQC SUV render (Mercedes GLC Electric)
The next-gen Mercedes EQC (rendered by TopElectricSUV) should have a resemblance to the EQE SUV/EQS SUV but with some differentiation in the front, rear, and interior.

As per a report by Automotive News on May 23, 2023, select North American dealers and individuals with a vested interest in Mercedes-Benz’s future have already seen the Mercedes EQC successor. The EQC successor is expected to feature a more refined and softened design compared to its predecessor, signaling a stylistic evolution for the model being replaced.

A dealer described the Mercedes GLC Electric as a model with a rounded front and rear, accentuating its crossover-like appearance even more compared to the EQC. That’d make sense from a product planner’s perspective, given that a traditional SUV, referred to as the Mini Mercedes G-Class Electric, is reportedly scheduled in 2026 and may belong to the same price segment. That said, the current GLC and EQC models strike a balance between the modern attributes of a crossover and the traditional elements of an SUV, which has certainly contributed to the popularity of the former.

Expected features

The second-generation Mercedes EQC SUV should have the specifications, features, and design that Americans are most interested in, unlike the current model, which is a conversion of the GLC.

Solar roof option

Mercedes solar roof panel
The solar roof option can be expected on the next-gen Mercedes EQC and perhaps the C-Class electric version. Image: Mercedes-Benz

Citing Mercedes-Benz R&D chief Markus Schäfer, Autoblog suggests that the next-gen EQC may come with a solar roof option. Schäfer told media after the Mercedes Vision EQXX world premiere in January 2022 that Mercedes-Benz customers will “probably” get to specify their vehicles with uninterrupted glass roofs or solar roofs. Schäfer mentioned that the company wants to use solar panel roofs in its vehicles, “probably starting (in) 2024.”

The Vision EQXX concept car features a solar roof consisting of 117 solar cells. An LFP battery stores the solar energy and supplies it to a climate blower, the lights, the infotainment system, and other ancillaries. The solar roof reduces the energy consumption of the traction battery pack, leading to an increase in the driving range of 25 km (15.5 mi). Mercedes-Benz and its partners are trying to use solar power to charge the traction battery pack, which would allow customers to drive their EVs longer without plugging in.

MBUX Hyperscreen

Mercedes EQE SUV interior dashboard MBUX Hyperscreen
The pillar-to-pillar MBUX Hyperscreen that is an option in the EQS and EQE range and should trickle down to the EQC. Image: Mercedes-Benz

MBUX Hyperscreen should filter down to the mid-size class when the next-gen EQC (EQC SUV) arrives. It could be an optional feature in the redesigned electric mid-size SUV. Three separate displays sit beneath a 56-inch, gently curved piece of glass and look like a single display floating on the dashboard. One of the three displays is an LCD unit located in front of the driver and serves as the instrument cluster. Then there’s an OLED central display that supports touch input. The third display is for the front passenger, and that is also an OLED touchscreen.

Made in two factories

Production of the next-gen Mercedes EQC SUV is likely to take place at the Mercedes-Benz plant in Bremen, Germany, and the Beijing Benz Automotive Co., Ltd. (BBAC) in Beijing, China. We don’t say this just based on the fact that these factories make the current-gen EQC. We’ve learned that Mercedes-Benz and Daimler Greater China are hiring to prepare for the production of MB.EA-M platform-based models in these factories.

Expected Specifications

Battery, Charging & Range

The next-gen Mercedes EQC could come to the U.S. with a lithium-ion battery pack having an energy storage capacity of around 100 kWh, enough to deliver an EPA-est. range of up to around 325 miles.

The all-new EQC SUV could get Mercedes-Benz Group’s next-gen batteries that are more efficient. The company plans to introduce batteries with an energy density of up to 900 Wh/l in the coming years. That’d be a huge upgrade over its current technology, which peaks at around 550 Wh/l.

The on-board charger could accept alternating current at up to around 10 kW. It’s safe to assume competition will pressurize Mercedes-Benz to use batteries with a high voltage of around 800 volts, allowing the peak DC charging input to be much higher than the current model (110 kW), easily 270 kW or higher. A 10-80% charging session could be a matter of just around 20 minutes.

800 volts of system voltage gives many advantages, including reduced charging time, higher performance, and reduced cabling weight and installation space. The most important benefit to EQC customers would be ultra-fast charging.


Expect at least two powertrain options: a single-motor unit for efficiency-minded customers and a twin-motor unit for off-roading or added grip on snow-covered roads. With its two motors, the top-end variant should generate a total of 400 horsepower, while the base variant, with a rear motor, may produce 275 to 300 horsepower.

Mercedes AMG-EQC SUV

In addition, we would expect the 43 AMG variant of the EQC SUV to follow shortly thereafter. The line-up could eventually include a 63 AMG variant with up to 700 horsepower. If such a variant is released, it would break the 3.5-second 0-60 mph acceleration time of the Tesla Model Y Performance. For comparison, the previous generation GLC AMG 63 S variant took only 3.6 seconds. The upcoming GLC SUV’s AMG 63 S E Performance variant should achieve that in 3.5 seconds or less.

AspectNext-gen Mercedes EQC Specification (Expected)
Drivetrain LayoutRWD/AWD
No. of MotorsOne/Two
Total Power275-300 hp/Up to 700 hp
0-60 mph Acceleration Time<3.5 seconds
Top Speed130 mph/Up to 155 mph
Battery Pack~100 kWh lithium-ion
Range (EPA-est.)~325 miles/Up to ~275 miles
Max. AC Charging Power~10 kW
Max. DC Charging Power≥270 kW
Expected next-gen Mercedes EQC SUV specifications

Mercedes-Benz’s EQC and BMW’s iX3 are no match for the Tesla Model Y, which is a force of nature in the electric crossover market. The Tesla crossover has its competition beat when it comes to specs, with a 330-mile range, a 3.5-second 0-60 mph acceleration time, and a 155 mph top speed. The supply of the German SUV is limited, and countries with stricter emission goals have higher allocations, as otherwise, the company would have to contend with huge fines.

In 2020, which was the EQC’s first full year of sales, approximately 20,000 units went to customers worldwide. In 2021, in the first three quarters of the year, Mercedes-Benz sold 17,938 units of the EQC. As for the iX3, BMW sold about 37,939 units in 2021. For an idea of how far ahead Elon Musk and his car company is, Tesla is increasing global production, and the individual numbers would soon hardly represent the Model Y monthly sales volume!

Mercedes EQC front three quarter right side
According to analysts, the Mercedes EQC’s sub-par 200-mile range (est on EPA) would have put off American buyers. Given its current range and charging capability, the EQC is one generation behind the Tesla Model Y.

Instead of starting the EQ electric sub-brand in the U.S. with the EQC, Mercedes-Benz released the EQS. The S Class equivalent allows customers to experience the pinnacle of a Mercedes electric vehicle. The company offers four EQ models in the United States in the form of the locally manufactured EQS SUV and the imported EQB, EQE, and EQS. The Mercedes EQE SUV, also sourced from the Mercedes-Benz Tuscaloosa plant, will join them at dealerships in Q2 2023.

Sustainable materials

Mercedes-Benz is conducting extensive research to make the body, body shell, and interior of its vehicles more sustainable. By the time the next-gen EQC meets production, the company may have new sourcing contracts in place for eco-friendly materials. Unlike the current EQC, which uses a mixture of man-made leather and real leather, the next-gen EQC could come with a completely leather-free interior option. The company is exploring new raw materials such as the cactus-based biomaterial Deserttex.

For customers who prefer genuine leather in their cars, Mercedes-Benz plans to offer sustainably produced and processed genuine leather starting this year. From livestock breeding to tanning, leather production and processing will be under extra scrutiny. Suppliers will need to strictly adhere to environment conservation laws and abstain from illegal deforestation.

In addition, Mercedes-Benz is looking into commercializing the innovative materials of its concept cars. For example, it is considering using the Vision EQXX’s animal-free silk-like biotechnological textile and its carpets made of bamboo fibers in series-production models. The company will switch to almost entirely CO2-free steel from 2025.

Release date

According to the previously cited Automotive News report, the Mercedes GLC Electric will arrive in 2024. However, the report could be referring to the car’s world premiere, which is usually set a few months before the start of production. While it is crucial for Mercedes-Benz to manufacture the GLC Electric in North America in order for buyers in the U.S. to be eligible for federal tax credits, the report does not provide information on this aspect.

If we go by the official statement of Mercedes-Benz Group CEO Ola Källenius, the new Tesla Model Y rival from Germany should debut in 2024 and go on sale in the first markets, including the U.S., in 2025. What’s certain is that the Mercedes GLC Electric is coming to the U.S.

In order to cover the entire markets, we need a second wave (of EVs), and the second wave are the vehicles with MMA and MB.EA, because this includes the electrical GLC and the electrical C-Class. This is the segment that’s the biggest Mercedes segment if you only look at unit sales. And these are vehicle generations that will be launched in ’25 and ’26.

Ola Källenius, CEO, Mercedes-Benz Group (Media conference call on February 17, 2023)

Current Mercedes EQC to be discontinued in May 2023: Report

Business Insider (Germany) reported on July 10, 2022, that Mercedes-Benz will stop manufacturing the EQC in Bremen on May 3, 2023, based on internal documents. When asked about the speculation, the company declined to comment.

Mercedes EQC production in China will also end in 2023 when the Mercedes EQE SUV comes to market, according to a report JESMB blog published on July 13, 2022.

While the EQC isn’t a big seller, not having an electric midsize SUV in the lineup does not seem wise, especially in the U.S. and China. As a result, the EQE SUV, in a low-spec variant, could serve as a placeholder until the next-generation EQC SUV becomes available in 2025.

Mercedes could drop the EQ branding for the next-gen EQC

Mercedes will not use the ‘EQ’ branding in future launches, as per a report published by Handelsblatt on January 12, 2023. Therefore, there is a possibility that the next-gen EQC could be launched as the ‘Mercedes GLC Electric.’ Mercedes-Benz plans to go all-electric by 2030, market conditions permitting. The automaker may then find itself in a situation where an EV-specific branding strategy would be unnecessary, the German newspaper report stated. Sticking with one nomenclature for all models would also avoid confusion. The company is yet to confirm this development.

TopElectricSUV says

The next-gen Mercedes EQC will be among the best luxury mid-size SUVs on the market when it arrives. In terms of quality, design, and luxury, Stuttgart should strive to make its offering better than the Tesla Model Y. As for performance and range, it should compete closely, if not surpass in some areas.

Mercedes EQC USA FAQs

What is the Mercedes EQC release date in the USA?

U.S. is reportedly getting the next-gen EQC in 2025. It should boast far superior specs compared to the first-gen.

Which SUVs would the Mercedes EQC rival?

The Mercedes EQC will chiefly rival the Polestar 4, Audi Q4 e-tron, Jaguar I-Pace, and the Tesla Model Y.

What is the expected Mercedes EQC price?

We expect Mercedes to release the GLC Electric at around USD 60,000.

Featured image: TopElectricSUV’s rendering of the next-gen Mercedes EQC SUV.