Mercedes-Benz has continued its A-Class and B-Class expansion, revealing plug-in '250e' hybrid variants of its small cars – and the A250e is heading for Australia next year.
By combining the 1.33-litre turbo petrol engine from the A180 and B180 with an electric motor making 75kW, Mercedes-Benz has managed to extract a total of 160kW and 450Nm from the 250e powertrain. Top speed is 140km/h in EV mode or 235km/h with both power sources engaged.
With a 15.6kWh battery pack nestled beneath the rear seats, the A250e will do between 60km and 68km on the WLTP cycle, while the less aerodynamic B250e manages between up to 67km. The battery is water-cooled, and the company says it adds around 150kg to each car's kerb weight.
Mercedes-Benz says the electric motor makes for sprightly performance, helping the A250e hit 100km/h in 6.6 seconds. Charging takes 1hr 45mins on a 7.4kW home wall box, or around 25 minutes using a DC fast charger.
To make sure the battery doesn't have too much of a negative impact on boot space, the A250e and B250e are both fitted with a 'front end exhaust system' that frees up more underfloor space at the rear. It doesn't quote a capacity, but Mercedes-Benz says the system allows for "minimal reduction in boot capacity".
Inside, the A-Class and B-Class PHEVs are near identical to the non-hybrid versions. The paddles behind the steering wheel are now used to toggle through five different regeneration modes, and the EV battery opens the door for pre-conditioning.
Both the A250e and B250e represent the start of a big plug-in hybrid expansion for Mercedes-Benz. It wants to have 10 PHEVs on sale by the end of 2019, expanding to more than 20 by the end of 2020.
The A250e sedan and hatch have been confirmed for Australia, and will arrive by the second quarter of 2020. There's no plans to bring the B250e Down Under at this stage.
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