When we say the word Mercedes, what comes to mind? Probably not the diminutive, utilitarian Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric.
More recently known as the B250e, the B-Class Electric owned the distinction of being the smallest model in the German automaker's U.S. lineup during its short three-year run. After making its debut in 2014, it was initially offered only in California and the 13 other states that follow California's tough emissions laws (Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington). It became a 50-state model a year later before being dropped due to slow sales.
While that may make used examples a little harder to find, its practical interior and upscale standard features and options help the Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric stand out among a growing list of newer all-electric alternatives.
Used Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Models
Though the Mercedes-Benz B-Class has been offered in Europe with traditional gasoline or diesel powertrains for more than a decade, it arrived in the U.S. as an electric-only model in 2014.
Propelled by a Tesla-supplied powertrain built around a 132-kilowatt electric motor and a 28-kWh battery pack, the B-Class Electric offered a driving range of 87 miles and an EPA miles per gallon equivalent (mpge) of 84 mpge. While considerably less than many more recent all-electric models, that range was more or less on par with the range of many of its original contemporaries.
Recharging the lithium-ion battery pack located beneath the floor required 30 hours from a standard 110-volt wall outlet or less than four hours from a dedicated 240-volt charger. One of the major downsides we noted was the lack of an available fast-charging port that would allow it to make better use of public charging stations.
Nearly a foot shorter than the next-largest Mercedes, the B-Class Electric claimed to offer seating for five passengers, though we found the narrow width of the rear seat made it more suitable for a pair of adults at most. Even taller grown-ups enjoyed abundant headroom thanks to the high roofline, but most would find the rear seat wanting for legroom. Many liked the high, crossover-like seating position created by the under-floor battery compartment, however.
One of the B-Class Electric's claims to fame was its simple box-on-wheels design, which incorporated 21.6 cubic feet of space behind the rear seats. Fold those seats down and you got a not-quite-flat load floor with 51.4 cubic feet of cargo room.
Less popular was the model's stiff ride quality that came in sharp contrast to the littlest Mercedes' luxury-car pretensions. Many also commented on the model's rather leisurely acceleration.
Despite its rather un-Mercedes-like exterior, the B-Class Electric's single trim level came standard with upscale amenities including 14-way power-adjustable front seats with driver-seat memory settings and a voice-controlled navigation system. Other noteworthy standard features included 17-inch alloy wheels, rain-sensing wipers, and front seatbacks with built-in, airliner-style fold-down tray tables. As with all Mercedes models, it was also offered with a wide range of options that included bi-xenon headlights and leather upholstery.
For its nationwide debut in 2015, a navigation system, keyless entry and ignition, and a range-extending mode became standard equipment. In its final year of production, the B-Class Electric received revised option packages that included an Electric Blue interior, along with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone connectivity and a 4G LTE upgrade for its Wi-Fi capability.
Read the most recent 2017 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive review.
If you are looking for older years, visit our used Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive page.