The interior layout, fit and finish
The Mercedes EQS gets an electrically adjustable driver’s seat as standard (including four-way lumbar adjustment) and a steering wheel that powers in and out, as well as up and down. Handily, both the seat and wheel have memory functions to make it easy to restore your preferred settings if someone else drives the car.
Unfortunately, despite all this, the driving position isn’t as good as the one in the Mercedes S-Class. You sit closer to the floor in the EQS, which means your knees are higher relative to your hips and your legs receive less support from the seat base. Indeed, some of our testers suffered from cramp after an hour or so behind the wheel.
Almost everything else is operated using a large, portrait-oriented touchscreen in the centre of the dashboard (it's pretty much identical to the one in the S-Class).
The menus are fairly easy to use after a bit of practice, and the system includes augmented reality sat-nav (showing direction arrows on a live camera feed) and Apple CarPlay/Android Auto smartphone mirroring. You also get a voice control system that’s designed to recognise natural commands but it can be a bit hit and miss.
Fancy something with a little more wow factor? If so, you can upgrade the infotainment system to what Mercedes calls the Hyperscreen. Looking like it’s been lifted straight from the bridge of the Starship Enterprise, this expensive option combines three screens – the digital driver display, the central infotainment screen and a large screen in front of the passenger – that span almost the entire width of the dashboard.
When combined with MB’s Mercedes Me service, Hyperscreen allows the driver and front passenger to be logged into different profiles, providing each with a tailored experience and allowing the passenger to use the internet, arrange their personal calendar or adjust certain car settings. To help minimise distractions to the driver, the passenger screen only switches on when the EQS detects that someone is sitting in the seat and appears as a decorative clock at all other times.
However, despite all its bells and whistles, Hyperscreen still doesn’t fix the issue of the EQS having no physical buttons or dials to adjust things like the climate control, and this makes it fairly difficult to use on the move. If you’re happy to consider luxury electric SUVs as well as low-slung electric saloons, it’s worth noting that the infotainment system in the BMW iX is less distracting to use because of its rotary control dial.