Used Mercedes-Benz EQS EVs Now Cost Less Than or as Much as a New Tesla Model 3 LR

2022 Mercedes-Benz EQS 22 photos
Photo: Mercedes-Benz / autoevolution edit
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Two and half years ago, Mercedes-Benz finally showed the world what the next-gen, battery-powered S-Class would look like. The wind tunnel-friendly EQS became official and had insane specs. The 108-kWh battery pack put on a show by performing much better in the real world than in the EPA's tests. Now, you can have one for less than half its original MSRP.
Imagine you are at Mercedes-Benz's helm, and it's finally time to create the all-electric S-Class. The future of the company depends on it. Would you simply remove the generous choice of engines and replace them with various combinations of motors and batteries or would you first test the waters with a completely different model?

Well, the marque chose the latter. And it's great that they decided to do that because the battery-powered S-Class, the aerodynamically efficient EQS, seems to be in some sort of free fall on the used market.

The EQS came into this world as a high-tech, plush vehicle that was supposed to show everyone that the inventor of the motor vehicle had everything it took to convince well-off customers that it could be worth it to make the switch. Although shaped weirdly and very heavy, the sedan impressed many with its top-notch interior quality, great range, tons of power, and impressive technologies.

But in a world where CUVs, SUVs, and pickup trucks dominated sales, launching a battery-powered luxurious ride that lacks great ground clearance but is expensive was a big gamble. The bulbous exterior didn't impress many prospective buyers, and the best version people could have bought was the rear-wheel-drive 450+. That one had an MSRP of around $105,000.

Mercedes\-Benz EQS
Photo: Mercedes-Benz
Granted, it had rear-wheel steering included in the price, but it wasn't enough. You still had to add options to make it a true Mercedes-Benz. So, many customers ended up paying nearly $120,000 for one.

Pricey and spicy

Don't worry, though! There weren't so many. Americans, for example, bought only 1,100 examples in the third quarter of last year. Things didn't look rosy sales-wise at the start of 2024, either. The marque sold a little over 12,000 EVs in the US. Tesla, on the other hand, delivered over 140,000 units, just to put things better into perspective.

But you can't blame a luxurious sedan for not becoming a sales champ just because it doesn't look great on the outside. You can also criticize its interior. Despite looking like it dropped from a dystopian, high-tech future, the cabin didn't have the best materials. Many of the trim materials started creaking after people took delivery.

No matter who you are and how much money you have, hearing annoying sounds coming from your six-figure car's dashboard is bound to irritate you. That's especially true for an all-electric vehicle that has little to no background noise it can take advantage of.

But it's not just those reasons why the EQS didn't enjoy the level of popularity Mercedes-Benz hoped for. Unlike Tesla, which managed to take advantage of a crazy car market and hike prices through the roof in 2022, the Stuttgart-based marque launched its luxurious ride in a world where the Tesla Model S and the Lucid Air were already competing for well-off people's bucks.

Mercedes\-Benz EQS
Photo: Mercedes-Benz
Then, BMW joined in on the fun with the i7, which not only looked like a mini-Rolls-Royce but also had a huge touchscreen dropping from the roof for those sitting in the rear.

Not only crowded but also unexpectedly competitive

To make everything worse, Tesla started dropping prices like it didn't care about profit margins at all, forcing every other automaker to somehow follow suit.

So, those who wanted an EV had four solid choices, including one with tons of power (Model S Plaid) and another that could go very far while having a very usable frunk (Air Grand Touring). Then, they also had the option to shop around for better deals or wait for Tesla to introduce another surprise discount or good incentive like free fast charging.

Those who didn't care about MSRPs or interest-free loans could've simply ordered the i7, which is arguably better built and offers more luxurious amenities.

Mercedes\-Benz EQS
Photo: LG Media Library
All in all, besides a questionable exterior design and a seemingly compromised interior build, the automaker also had the timing wrong. It's not surprising that the EQ brand now seems dead in the water. The all-electric G-Wagen, for example, isn't called the EQG. Mercedes-Benz didn't want to associate its iconic, rugged SUV with that non-profitable nameplate.

Someone's winning, and that someone could be you!

But you know what the great news is? You can buy a used Mercedes-Benz EQS right now for almost 60% off its original MSRP. Just take a look at what we found in the photo gallery. There are tons of impressive deals out there.

There are even 2023 model-year units available for under $42,000. Most of them have under 30,000 miles (48,280 kilometers) on the clock! That means the high-voltage battery should be in pretty good shape.

Used EQS for Sale
Photo: CarGurus
And how could you say no to such prices? You don't even have to be worried about the energy storage unit sitting in the floor because the Germans offer a 10-year or 155,000-mile warranty. That brings a much-needed peace of mind. What's even better is that Mercedes-Benz has a reputation. It's not going to leave you high and dry like Fisker did with its customers. You can trust that it will keep its promise.

If you're in the market for an EV that will serve you well, a used Mercedes-Benz EQS that costs less than a new Tesla Model 3 Long Range (which, by the way, is now eligible for the full EV tax credit) could be a great buy. Just make sure it wasn't flooded or declared a lemon. Ask all the right questions before signing any piece of paper.

We suspect that this trend might continue for quite a while. Even though the Model Y became the world's best-selling car last year, all-electric vehicles are still nowhere near becoming popular in the US. The journey could be even longer now that people learned from early adopters that range can be shortened by low temperatures, insurance premiums might be very high, and many states are making registration a lot more expensive to cover for the missed gas tax revenue.

Happy shopping!
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About the author: Florin Amariei
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Car shows on TV and his father's Fiat Tempra may have been Florin's early influences, but nowadays he favors different things, like the power of an F-150 Raptor. He'll never be able to ignore the shape of a Ferrari though, especially a yellow one.
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