When German automaker Daimler announced more than five years ago that it would be giving all of its electric cars the “ED” suffix — short for “Electric Drive,” it seemed a little perplexed that many English-speaking countries guffawed at the idea. ED of course, being short for a particularly personal medical condition which late-night TV ads tells us can affect up to 25 percent of the male population over the age of 40.
But now it seems that Daimler has found a cure for its particular ED problem, thanks to a newly-announced nomenclature for the entire Mercedes-Benz family, including spin-off brands like Smart and luxury brands like Mercedes-Maybach. And while we’re joking a little like teenagers in sex ed class, we’ve got to admit that the new naming convention should make for a far more obvious lineup to the Mercedes-Benz family.
Aside from continuing its five core model designations — A, B, C, E, and S — Mercedes-Benz says it will now add the letters “GL” in front of any SUV model variants, “CL” in front of any 4-door Coupés or Shooting Brakes, and “SL” in front of any roadster variants. But it’s suffixes to those model names which we think will likely interest our readers most: single-letter, lower-case characters that will make it instantly possible to figure out just what’s under the hood.
Found on every 2016 model year Mercedes-Benz car onwards, the single lower-case letters will not only do away with long phrases like ‘Electric Drive,’ ‘Natural Gas Drive,’ BlueTEC Hybrid,’ and ‘F-Cell,’ but will also simplify fuel designations into five simple classes.
- The letter ‘c’ will be replace ‘Natural Gas Drive’ on all of Mercedes-Benz compressed natural gas vehicles.
- The letter ‘d’ will stand for ‘Diesel,’ regardless of the type of diesel engine and how its injectors function.
- Meanwhile, ‘e’ will stand for anything with a plug, be it a fully-electric car or a plug-in hybrid, replacing the old ‘ED,’ ‘Electric Drive’ and ‘Plug-in Hybrid’ name plates.
- In the same line, the lower case letter ‘f’ will designate a hydrogen fuel-cell vehicle, replacing the outgoing ‘F-CELL’ nomenclature.
- Finally, ‘h’ will be used on all non plug-in hybrid cars, with gasoline-powered vehicles having no suffix at all.
Those of a skeptical nature will note that the ‘e’ suffix will make it harder for people to differentiate between fully electric and plug-in hybrid versions of the car. Since it’s likely that Mercedes-Benz will likely use all-electric drivetrains only for its smaller cars like the Smart ForTwo, ForFour, A-Class and B-Class, while giving larger cars like the C, E, and S-Class plug-in hybrid drivetrains, we suspect this confusion will be transitory.
What do you think of Mercedes-Benz’ new naming conventions for denoting the fuel type of its cars? Are you frustrated that electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles now get the same single-letter suffix? Or are you just disappointed with the disappearance of ED?
Leave your thoughts in the Comments below.
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