Cars/ First-drive/ Volvo XC40 Recharge Vs Mercedes EQB350 Vs Audi E-tron 55 | The Best of Luxury EV SUVs in India

Volvo XC40 Recharge Vs Mercedes EQB350 Vs Audi E-tron 55 | The Best of Luxury EV SUVs in India

Our picks across segments of luxury electric SUV’s to ascertain what makes the most E-sense!

For

Volvo XC40 Recharge - Exhilarating Performance, Connectivity, Squat SUV proportions
Mercedes-Benz EQB 350 4Matic - Interior Design, 5+2 seating, Relaxed Drive
Audi e-Tron 55 - Driving Comfort, Cabin Ergonomics, Build Quality

Against

Volvo XC40 Recharge - Wow factor missing inside & outside
Mercedes-Benz EQB 350 4Matic - Not exactly a cheap family runabout
Audi e-Tron 55 - Weight, Compromised range

Driving

How Different Are These to Drive?

With different approaches to electrification, all are quite different in their inherent driving nature. The XC40’s shared platform between ICE and EV motors is the same and with heavy batteries too, we have one of the most acceleration-friendly Volvos ever! With the twin motor’s immense torque is guaranteed to raise a smile, and even increased familiarity with the kick of electrification doesn’t diminish the wow factor. It’s got a well-mannered ride, and adequate confidence to dart in and out of corners. But getting on the power is always a riot!

The EQB shares chassis components with the gas-burning GLB, but it’s considerably heavier, giving it a more settled ride. It drives exactly how you’d hope or expect a tall van-like two-tonne box with high levels of torque. It never feels anything less than its weight – or height – but its traction and grip are surprisingly good. It has all the uncanny silent speed and cornering determination, but overall, it’s not particularly engaging neither thrilling. But then it’s a seven-seat SUV, so such matters are arguably pretty trifling anyway. What matters most is that it makes everything easy. It operates like any other automatic car save for its brake regen, but that too has an ‘auto’ mode which is where it operates best.

The e-Tron which is a big, heavy ground’s up EV SUV is surprisingly sporty to drive while offering one of the most comfortable to be driven in. It does take 0.8 secs longer than the Recharge with body roll being kept in check surprisingly well, but the sheer heft of the car is enough to drag it out of your ideal line if you tip it into corner too hard. Braking uses both discs and energy-saving regen, seamlessly switching between the two depending on your application. Paddle shifters attached to the steering wheel allow you to control the level of regeneration.



TopGear Magazine June 2024