There was one overriding theme at this year’s Frankfurt motor show – electrification. With ultra-stringent CO2 emission standards set to come into force in Europe at the end of 2021, all the major brands made a concerted effort to paint a green face, headlining their presentations with one or more zero-emission EVs.
Mercedes-Benz led the charge with its striking Vision EQS concept, previewing how an electrified S-Class could look in five years. The futuristic design study isn’t just a pie-in-the-sky exercise, as it’s underpinned by a new modular EV architecture that will underpin all of its upcoming battery-powered offerings as it can be scaled up or down in all key dimensions. On paper, the EQS entails few compromises versus a petrol-powered S-Class. The avant-garde concept features a pair of electric motors – one each for the front and rear axles. A combined output of 476hp enables the big sedan to sprint from 0-100kph in under 4.5 seconds and travel up to 700km on a full charge.
Mercedes also used the Frankfurt show to outline its ‘Ambition 2039’ initiative, in which the company aims to have a carbon-neutral new passenger car fleet over the next 20 years. As an interim target, Mercedes says plug-in hybrids and full-electric vehicles will account for more than 50 per cent of its sales by 2030. The message was much the same across at the Porsche stand, as the Stuttgart-based marque’s star attraction was the swoopy Tayca