Is the 2022 Mercedes-Benz EQS 450+ a Hassle Without Level 2 Home Chargers?

2022 Mercedes-Benz EQS 450 charging highlights:

  • One of our editors recently spent some time with the 2022 Mercedes-Benz EQS 450+
  • As this editor didn’t have a Level 2 home charger, they relied on public charging stations to top off the EV
  • While they aren’t absolutely necessary, Level 2 home chargers make EQS ownership easier

The electric wave is flowing full speed through Mercedes-Benz, and the first EV to hit the shore, er, the road is the 2022 EQS. And while it cedes the range crown to the Lucid Air, the EQS’ battery should assuage most owners’ range anxieties. However, no EV works without reliable charging access, whether it’s public fast chargers or Level 2 home chargers. But if you don’t have one of the latter, does owning an EV like the EQS become a major headache?  

Why would you want a Level 2 home charger if you own a 2022 Mercedes-Benz EQS 450+?

A white Nissan Leaf plugged into a ChargePoint Level 2 public charger
A Nissan Leaf plugged into a ChargePoint Level 2 public charger | Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Regardless of their brand origins, all EV chargers fall into one of three categories or ‘levels.’ Level 1 chargers are basically sophisticated standard 120V house outlets, while Level 2 chargers run on 240V sources. As for Level 3 chargers, they can run on 480V AC sources, but in the US, they’re usually plugged into DC sources. Hence why they’re often called DC fast chargers.

While you’ll only find Level 3 chargers at public charging stations, you can install Level 2 chargers at home. Or rather, a professional electrician can install them, because they require 240V outlets. That makes them more expensive overall than Level 1 chargers. However, the higher-voltage outlet—which also provides more current—is what lets them charge your EV faster. And the charging speed differences are significant.

Because of their (relatively) low-voltage source, and because they often share a circuit with household appliances, Level 1 chargers are slow, Cars.com explains. Maxing out at two kW of power, these ‘trickle chargers’ often take over a day to recharge a drained EV. Meanwhile, depending on the outlet plug, a Level 2 home charger can often recharge your EV overnight.

And as one of our editors Jordan Almond found out, that makes a noticeable difference when you’re driving a 2022 Mercedes-Benz EQS 450+.

How long does it take to recharge a 2022 Mercedes EQS 450+?

The rear 3/4 view of a black street-parked 2022 Mercedes-Benz EQS 450+
2022 Mercedes-Benz EQS 450+ rear 3/4 | Mercedes-Benz
2022 Mercedes-Benz EQS 450+
Motor arrangementRear permanently-synchronous electric motor
Horsepower329 hp
Torque417 lb-ft
Usable battery capacity107.8 kWh
MPGe rating97 mpge city/97 mpge highway
EPA-estimated range350 miles
Onboard charger rating9.6 kW
Recharge timesLevel 2 (240V/32A): 11.25 hours (10-100%)
Level 3 DC (110 kW): 0.5 hours (10-80%)

The base 2022 Mercedes-Benz EQS trim, the EQS 450+ (‘450 Plus’) only has one motor. But it has the same onboard charger and battery as the EQS 580 4Matic and Mercedes-AMG EQS. So, it has the same recharge speeds.

Although Mercedes-Benz has official Level 2 and Level 3 recharge times for the EQS 450, it doesn’t list a Level 1 time. It likely assumes that EQS owners will have Level 2 home chargers installed, or get one via Mercedes’ partner, ChargePoint. And based on what Jordan experienced, there’s ample reason for that.

Not having a Level 2 home charger complicates Mercedes-Benz EQS 450+ ownership

A white 2022 Mercedes-Benz EQS 450+ at a Mercedes dealership's ChargePoint charger
2022 Mercedes-Benz EQS 450+ at a Mercedes dealership’s ChargePoint charger | Jordan Almond, MotorBiscuit

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Although Jordan has access to a 240V outlet at home, Level 2 chargers aren’t simply cables or fancy laptop charging bricks. So, it’s not like Mercedes-Benz could just provide a 240V-compatible plug for her EQS loaner. As a result, when she charged the EQS at home, she had to use the provided Level 1 charger with a regular wall outlet.

In addition to voltage and current, recharge times also depend on the power supply plug, which can be one-phase or three-phase. Based on EV Compare’s recharge time calculator and Mercedes-Benz’s charging estimates, you’d need a three-phase plug for a Level 2 home charger. But assuming you only have a three-phase version of the average 120V wall outlet, recharging the EQS 450+ from 10-100% would take over 34.5 hours. And a one-phase version would take nearly 60 hours.

But that’s an ideal scenario based on a nearly empty battery. For chemistry reasons, EVs charge slower the ‘fuller’ their batteries are. Hence why, when Jordan plugged the Mercedes-Benz EQS 450+ into the wall one night, she found it only gained 15 miles of range in 10 hours. And that meant she had to rely on public fast chargers and ones at the local Mercedes dealership.

However, the EQS has ways of getting around this inconvenience.

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Firstly, the 2022 Mercedes-Benz EQS 450’s navigation system tells you how much range you’ll have left at your destination. It also lets you know where the closest public charging stations are. Admittedly, these are common features on most EVs, not just $100K-plus ones, but they do decrease range anxiety somewhat.

One downside of relying on public chargers to juice up the EQS is the sheer number of apps you usually need, Jordan says. You often need a different app for every charger brand, and if you don’t have the specific one you need, that eats up even more time. And it gets confusing if you have a lot of competing brands in your area.

Fortunately, the 2022 EQS features the new Mercedes-Benz Me Charge system. It’s an automatic payment system built into the EV that communicates directly with whatever charging station it’s plugged into. So, rather than wasting time digging through apps or your wallet, the payment is transferred from your Mercedes Me account. And it’s compatible with over 60,000 chargers throughout the US.

In addition, each 2022 Mercedes-Benz EQS comes with two free years of DC fast-charging sessions at Electrify America stations. While each session is only 30 minutes long, as noted earlier, that’s enough to bring the EQS from 10-80%.

Also, Jordan noted that many restaurants, cafes, shopping malls, and other such locations are starting to install dedicated EV chargers. Apparently, Cracker Barrels often have a lot of chargers. So, even when she couldn’t recharge the EQS at home, she could grab some coffee and do some work while it charged in town.

Is installing a Level 2 home charger worth it?

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So, does this mean you don’t need a Level 2 home charger if you own or want to buy a 2022 Mercedes-Benz EQS 450+? Well, it depends.

For one, not everyone has safe, reliable access to public EV chargers. Secondly, while DC fast charging is convenient, it can damage the battery if used too often. That means using Level 2 chargers, which make for longer charging times.

However, those increased charging times reinforce why home chargers, especially Level 2 ones, are vital to EV ownership. In a 2021 discussion with us, Cars.com Executive Editor Joe Wiesenfelder said that they’re “the only realistic and satisfying way to own an EV.” Unlike a gas-powered car, you don’t have to drive out to a station with an EV: just plug it in at home. And long charging times don’t matter when you’re sleeping as your car charges.

On the other hand, installing a Level 2 charger at home requires professional electrical work, which takes time and money. And those who rent their homes or apartments face additional administrative hurdles. Plus, because Jordan planned her day around charging the EQS, her limited home charging opportunities weren’t “that disruptive,” she says. The only time it was an issue was during a 180-mile trip that caused some minor scheduling conflicts. But there were no meltdowns involved.

In short, you can own and drive a 2022 Mercedes-Benz EQS without having a Level 2 charger at home. But having one does make the ownership experience much more convenient.

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