The Mercedes-Benz GLA 250 e Plug-In Hybrid SUV: The Complete Guide For India

Mercedes-Benz GLA 250 e Plug-In Hybrid
Price: N/A
Type of electric vehicle: Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV)
Body type: SUV
Battery size: 15.6 kWh
Electric range (WLTP): 38 - 39 miles
Tailpipe emissions: 31 g


Electric Cars: The Basics


For those of you new to zero-emission electric driving, we recommend a read of the following articles:


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The Mercedes-Benz GLA 250 e SUV PHEV


Mercedes-Benz, simply known as Mercedes, is a leading global luxury automative manufacturer based in Germany. The company is headquartered in Stuttgart and is famed for its high quality passenger vehicles, to include the Mercedes-Maybach. However, the company is also a leader in manufacturing commercial vehicles, to include the plug-in Mercedes eSprinter commercial EV and the plug-in Mercedes eVito electric van.

Mercedes-Benz EQ is the sub-brand used by the company for its portfolio of battery-electric vehicles (BEVs), plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) and mild hybrids. The pure electric cars are branded as EQ, while the PHEVs are branded as EQ Power. The mild hybrid vehicles are branded as EQ Boost. The PHEV portfolio includes:

The Mercedes-Benz GLA premium compact SUV was introduced in 2013. It is the smallest SUV offered by the German manufacturer. The GLA PHEV SUV is available as a petrol/electric variant .

The electric motor is coupled with a 1,322 cc 4 -cylinder petrol engine (218 bhp/ 450 Nm), seamlessly combining the benefits of a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle. The overall performance of the EV is not shabby. The PHEV has a top speed of 137 mph and can achieve 0-62 mph in 7.1 seconds. The EV has a single electric motor and is only available as a front-wheel drive (FWD).

The plug-in compact SUV has a 15.6 kWh EV battery with a WLTP zero-emission electric range of up to 39 miles. Expect a real world range closer to 32 miles due to a number of factors, to include, driving profile, number of passengers, road conditions, weather etc. In any case, for urban driving and shorter motorway commutes the electric range is sufficient.

The EV can be charged at home via a dedicated EV charger. The EV has a 7.4 kW AC onboard charger. Using a domestic 3-PIN socket will take up to 5 hours 30 mins. However, we at e-zoomed discourage the use of domestic sockets for charging EVs.

The compact SUV is practical, despite the smaller boot space (445 L), compared to the conventional ICE variant, and is a good all-rounder PHEV. The EV is well suited for both families and company car drivers. Families can take advantage of the cheaper cost per mile, when driving on the electric mode. Moreover, the EV has a claimed 201.8 MPG fuel economy. Company car drivers can take advantage of the lower BiK taxes.

The interior is finished to a high specification and is technology-laden, to include, the Mercedes-Benz User Experience (MBUX) in car infotainment system. MBUX can be voice activated, personalised and uses Artificial Intelligence (AI) to learn and adapt over time. It is able to predict personal habits, such as navigation for frequently-driven routes, or the radio stations etc. The exterior of the SUV does not disappoint either. Bottom-line, it is an attractive styled crossover SUV.


PROS CONS
An attractive exterior design and high interior qualityHigher tailpipe emissions (31g)
Respectable EV range (up to 39 miles)Cheaper SUV PHEVs available
Good boot spaceHigher trim levels not cheap

Gallery


The Mercedes-Benz GLA 250 e SUV PHEV (credit: Mercedes)


One of the key advantages of driving an electric vehicle (EV), is that, it is cheaper to drive, compared to conventional internal combustion engine (ICE), petrol and diesel vehicles. For many years, we have witnessed a significant increase in prices at petrol pumps across India. However, this is not an ‘India’ only trend, but a global trend. We can continue to expect an inflation in global petrol and diesel prices for the foreseeable future.

Both, a pure electric car and a plug-in hybrid electric car, offer significant savings on driving costs per mile, when driven on zero-tailpipe emission electric mode. In India, filling a petrol or diesel car can cost anything between Rs 5,000 to Rs 10,000. As an example, the very popular Audi Q7 diesel SUV has a fuel capacity of 85 litres. Assuming an average cost per litre of Rs 90, the cost of filling a full tank will be up to Rs 7,650!

In comparison, the all-electric Audi e-tron SUV , which is now available in India, and a similar size to the Audi Q7, can be fully recharged for less than Rs 1,000. Put another way, charging the Audi electric SUV, can save up to 85% compared to filling a full tank of fuel (in India, the average cost for residential electricity is between Rs 5 to Rs 10 per kWh).

At an average one can expect a cost per km of Rs 1 for a zero-emission EV, while for an equivalent petrol or diesel vehicle, the cost per km could be up to Rs 7 per km. The annual cost savings achieved by switching to electric driving is significant! The sooner you switch to green cars, the sooner you can start saving money. That is simply the bottom-line!


At A Glance
EV Type:Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV)
Body Type:SUV
Engine:Petrol-Electric
Available In India:No

Variants (3 Options)
GLA 250 e Exclusive Edition
GLA 250 e Exclusive Edition Premium
GLA 250 e Exclusive Edition Premium Plus

EV Battery & Emissions
EV Battery Type:Lithium-ion
EV Battery Capacity:Available in one battery size: 15.6 kWh
Charging:On-board charger 7.4 kW AC
Charge Port:Type 2
EV Cable Type:Type 2
Tailpipe Emissions:31g (CO2/km)
Warranty:6 years or 62,000 miles

Charging Times (Overview)
Slow charging AC (3 kW – 3.6 kW):6 – 12 hours (dependent on size of EV battery & SOC)
Fast charging AC (7 kW – 22 kW):3 – 8 hours (dependent on size of EV battery & SoC)
Rapid charging AC (43 kW):0-80%: 20 mins to 60 mins (dependent on size of EV battery & SoC)
Rapid charging DC (50 kW+):0-80%: 20 mins to 60 mins (dependent on size of EV battery & SoC)
Ultra rapid charging DC (150 kW+):0-80% : 20 mins to 40 mins (dependent on size of EV battery & SoC)
Tesla Supercharger (120 kW – 250 kW):0-80%: up to 25 mins (dependent on size of EV battery & SoC)

Dimensions
Height (mm):1609
Width (mm):2020
Length (mm):4410
Wheelbase (mm):2729
Turning Circle (m):11.4
Boot capacity (L):445

GLA 250 e Exclusive Edition
EV Battery Capacity:15.6 kWh
Pure Electric Range (WLTP):38 – 39 miles
Electric Energy Consumption (kWh/100km):16.4
Fuel Consumption (MPG):201.8
Charging:On-board charger 7.4 kW AC
Top Speed:137 mph
0-62 mph:7.1 seconds
Drive:Front-wheel drive (FWD)
Electric Motor (kW):75 kW
Max Power (hp):218 (system output)
Torque (Nm):450 (system output)
Transmission:Automatic
Seats:5
Doors:5
Kerb Weight (kg):1,775
Colours:7
NCAP Safety Rating:Five-Star

Top Reasons To Buy An Electric Vehicle (EV)


The past few years, in particular, 2020 and 2021, have witnessed a phenomenal increase in the adoption of electric vehicles (EVs). Major global economies, to include, the United States and the European Union, have documented a surge in the sales of battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs). In many of these countries, lower emission to zero-emission vehicles (ZEVs) now account for up to 15% of annual new vehicle registrations, and in some countries like Norway, even greater than 50%.

This is not a short-term trend. Instead, it is the emergence of a long-term shift towards cleaner forms of travel. Though there are many reasons to own an electric vehicle (EV), we list below some of the key reasons fuelling consumer demand for EVs.

1). Vast choice of electric vehicles

It is true, that in India, the choice of electric vehicles is still restricted, compared to international markets. In India, we have access to only up to 15 electric vehicle models to include the MG ZS EV, Hyundai Kona, Jaguar I-PACE and the Tata Nexon EV. However, in many of the matured international markets, the choice of pure electric cars and plug-in hybrid electric cars are up to 200 models. We expect this to only increase! However, we do hope India will see an increase in the variety and supply of EVs on sale, giving consumers a greater choice.

2). Increased zero-emission range

The emission-free driving range of electric cars have improved significantly in recent years, and the latest models of EVs can achieve well over 200 miles (WLTP), if not over 300 miles (WLTP) on a single charge. In general, EV battery size and efficiency have improved. As an example, the all-electric Kia e-Niro compact SUV has a range of 282 miles. The best-selling pure electric Nissan Leaf has an electric range of 239 miles on a single charge. Of course, the likes of Tesla electric cars have a range well over 300 miles on a single charge!

3). Increased public charging infrastructure

Yes, it is true that the public charging infrastructure in India is at a nascent stage, but in a number of international markets, AC fast charging and DC rapid charging stations are now widespread. As an example, in the UK, there are as many public charging stations as there are petrol pumps! This increase in charging accessibility has driven confidence in consumers who were hesitant to migrate to zero-tailpipe emission electric cars i.e. no more range anxiety! Of course, many homes in the UK also have a dedicated EV charger. For EVs to succeed in India, the deployment of public and home EV charging infrastructure is mandatory.

4). Lower running and maintenance costs

Electric vehicles have far fewer moving parts compared to conventional internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles. The lower number of moving parts has reduced the maintenance burden of EVs, resulting in lower maintenance costs. Electric cars are also cheap to drive. At an average one can expect a cost per km of Rs 1 for a zero-emission EV, while for an equivalent petrol or diesel vehicle, the cost per km could be up to Rs 7 per km. The annual cost savings achieved by switching to electric driving is significant!

5). Lower air pollution

However, in our view the greatest benefit of driving electric vehicles, in particular, pure electric vehicles, is the absence of tailpipe emissions. Electric cars do not even have a tailpipe! Zero-emission electric driving has a real and immediate impact on local air quality i.e. reducing air pollution. Plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) have reduced tailpipe pollution compared to traditional petrol and diesel vehicles.




Author

Ashvin Suri

Ashvin has been involved with the renewables, energy efficiency and infrastructure sectors since 2006. He is passionate about the transition to a low-carbon economy and electric transportation. Ashvin commenced his career in 1994, working with US investment banks in New York. Post his MBA from the London Business School (1996-1998), he continued to work in investment banking at Flemings (London) and JPMorgan (London). His roles included corporate finance advisory, M&A and capital raising. He has been involved across diverse industry sectors, to include engineering, aerospace, oil & gas, airports and automotive across Asia and Europe. In 2010, he co-founded a solar development platform, for large scale ground and roof solar projects to include the UK, Italy, Germany and France. He has also advised on various renewable energy (wind and solar) utility scale projects working with global institutional investors and independent power producers (IPP’s) in the renewable energy sector. He has also advised in key international markets like India, to include advising the TVS Group, a multi-billion dollar industrial and automotive group in India. Ashvin has also advised Indian Energy, an IPP backed by Guggenheim (a US$ 165 billion fund). He has also advised AMIH, a US$ 2 billion, Singapore based group. Ashvin has also worked in the real estate and infrastructure sector, to including working with the Matrix Group (a US$ 4 billion property group in the UK) to launch one of the first few institutional real estate funds for the Indian real estate market. The fund was successfully launched with significant institutional support from the UK/ European markets. He has also advised on water infrastructure, to include advising a Swedish clean technology company in the water sector. He is also a member of the Forbury Investment Network advisory committee. He has also been involved with a number of early stage ventures.

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