By on July 31, 2017

2014 B-Class Electric Drive. - Image: Mercedes-BenzBefore it ever got the chance to serve a conventional role in Mercedes-Benz USA’s lineup as America’s lone premium mini-MPV, the Mercedes-Benz B-Class is dead.

Mind you, the B-Class isn’t dead globally. But the B-Class Electric Drive, the only version of the B-Class ever to make it to U.S. shores, is ending production this fall.

The Mercedes-Benz B-Class ED will be missed, if at all, by very few Americans.

According to Automotive News, Mercedes-Benz sold only 3,651 B-Class Electric Drives between December 2013 and June 2017 —  fewer than 100 per month. In a world where the Nissan Leaf, even three years removed from peak popularity, averages 12 times that sort of monthly volume, the Rastatt, Germany-built B-Class ED is a whole ‘nuther kind of rare.

At first, the electric B-Class’s limited availability in California and associated ZEV states likewise limited sales potential. Eventually, however, the route causes of the B-Class ED’s low volume became obvious: the Mercedes-Benz B250e is a tall $40,895 hatchback with 87 miles of range, 177 horsepower, and wheels that declare to all around, “I can’t make it from Los Angeles to San Diego.”2014 B-Class Electric Drive. - Image: Mercedes-BenzConsumers appear willing to jump on the long-range electric bandwagon of a startup like Tesla for a car such as the Model 3. But the B-Class Electric Drive is one of numerous electric cars from established automakers that have failed to take off, limited in part by architecture designed for a conventional car.

The B-Class, on the market in Canada since 2005 and spanning two generations, is currently sold north of the border as the B250 and B250 4Matic, powered by the CLA’s 208-horsepower 2.0-liter turbo four. Though by no means a popular car, Mercedes-Benz Canada has sold more than 30,000 B-Classes since launching a dozen years ago. The B250 is currently priced from the USD equivalent of $30,000, a couple hundred bucks more than the basic CLA250.

South of the border, the B250e ends a run that produced the bulk of its volume in 2015, when 1,906 — more than half — of the B-Class Electric Drives were sold. Mercedes-Benz will now turn its focus to the EQ sub-brand. Automotive News says of the 10 electric cars Mercedes-Benz wants to be selling by 2022, many will be EQ-badged vehicles.

If EVs were ever going to reach Mercedes-Benz’s forecast of 25 percent global market share by 2025, the B-Class Electric Drive was not the car that was going to put them over the hump.

[Image: Daimler AG]

Timothy Cain is a contributing analyst at The Truth About Cars and and the founder and former editor of Follow on Twitter @timcaincars.

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10 Comments on “The Mercedes-Benz B-Class EV Is Dead, so the B-Class Is Dead in America...”

  • avatar

    I think most Canadians regarded the car as a too-expensive Hyundai Elantra GT. I certainly did. High insurance bracket, very expensive maintenance, and you didn’t really get too much for your extra 10K. Plus, it said MB on the badges, but it wasn’t really, if you know what I mean.

  • avatar
    Arthur Dailey

    Check out pictures of the current MB ‘B’ class and the current generation Kia Rondo and then see how many people can tell the difference.

  • avatar

    This was a compliance car with a Tesla drive train. It came from a partnership between Tesla and Diamler that has long since been ended. Diamler is building there own EVs now, and the cost was likely to large for this.

  • avatar

    I see a blue one occasionally, on my way home from work. I had to look the thing up on the M-B Web site, to see what it was. The “e” confused me at first, since it used to mean fuel injected (“einspritzen”) on Mercedes-Benzes.

  • avatar

    Ugly car with mediocre performance and highest price in class – a real mystery why it wasn’t super popular.

    • 0 avatar

      The photo perfectly suits this article because its clear why no one wants this – look at it.

      No one wants that. Plus you get no prestige and every downside of MB ownership.

      I can see how people like an older Mercedes C200/250 as they are rwd and they do drive quite nice and they do have *some* of theta Mercedes ‘experience’ and you may put up with some MB servicing nonsense because it is better drive than a Corolla but this? No thanks.

      A and B class Mercs are rubbish new or old.

      C class you can make a judgement call and certainly the Mercedes CUVs.

  • avatar

    I am sure Mercedes has a long line up of men aged 50+ who want to drive something called an “ED”.

    • 0 avatar

      Exactly what I was going to comment on!

      I thought this:
      “The Mercedes-Benz B-Class ED will be missed, if at all, by very few Americans.”
      was just a funny typo, since the headline calls it an EV.
      Yeah, Mercedes, way to miss the mark with the acronym.
      And don’t replace it with the ALS. Take my word for it.

      By the way, with a range of 87 miles, they could have tried to sell it to the really gullible with “it goes as far as one of our regular cars does, on just a quarter tank of gas!”

      • 0 avatar

        Don’t forget the same company sells a Smart ED. Which may actually sell even worse than the B ED.

        Smart should have named their car the Alec. But given they’re actually trying to sell a car called the ED, it’s more likely they’d follow it up with the Ass.

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