All along, Mercedes Benz has been saying their B-Class Electric Drive battery pack has a capacity of 28 kWh. Since the B-Class EV weighs in around 3900 pounds, all the best estimates put the usable amount around 25 kWh, resulting in an electric range at around 80 miles.
At the New York Auto Show this past week, however, Tom Moloughney (you likely recognize his name from his involvement and coverage of the BMW i3, and he also reports on InsideEVs periodically) was able to talk with a Mercedes representative and he learned that the 28 kWh rating is not the total battery pack capacity – it’s the usable energy!
The Mercedes Benz B-Class will come with an optional ‘range mode’. When charged in standard mode, the B-Class EV will use 28 kWh of battery capacity. If ‘range mode’ is selected before charging, similar to the Tesla Model S, the amount of usable battery capacity increases by 15% to somewhere around 33 kWh.
Mercedes knows the impact of having an electric range over the 100 mile mark, and Heiko Schmidt, product manager for Mercedes Benz USA, said “Our clear target is to have that in the three-digit range.”
33 kWh battery pack capacity definitely puts the every-day-non-mile-hyper-miling range at or above 100 miles, the first EV to do so besides the Tesla Model S (and the compliance/California only Rav4 EV).