This is by far not the first batch of spy photos with the upcoming Mercedes-Benz EQS but it is surely the most revealing so far. The luxury battery-powered saloon looks almost ready given the relatively low level of camouflage. However, we don’t expect to see the final production version of the EQS before the early months of 2021.

This prototype rides on very interesting two-tone aerodynamic wheels. Obviously, we can’t confirm whether this is their final look but chances are high Mercedes will probably offer something very similar once the EQS goes on sale around the globe.

Gallery: Mercedes-Benz EQS new spy photos

The zero-emission S-Class equivalent will be marketed as a direct competitor against the Tesla Model S and future electric BMW 7 Series and will be based on the brand’s large-car Electric Vehicle Architecture (EVA) platform. It should be at dealers towards the second half of next year.

We don’t know much about the technology under the sleek skin but some of the photos seem to confirm the EQS will benefit from rear-wheel steering tech to compensate for the saloon’s massive dimensions. Mercedes has also hinted the most efficient versions of the EQS will have a single-charge range of up to 435 miles (700 kilometres) measured by Europe’s WLTP testing cycle.

If power is what you are after, there are rumours about an AMG-branded version of the EQS with a dual-motor setup and 600 bhp (447 kilowatts) on tap. Mercedes launch plans may be affected by the coronavirus pandemic but we know for sure the EQS will be followed by the EQE and a pair of electrified SUVs.

Interestingly, parts of the EQS will make an official debut later this week. Mercedes has teased its next-gen infotainment system before its premiere on 7 January during the 2021 digital version of the Consumer Electronics Show. This tech will be optionally available on the EQS.