Chicago Auto Show 2020

Metris Weekender draws inspiration from Mercedes-Benz's past

There's overlanding and then there's overlanding in style in the Metris Weekender.

Photo courtesy of Mercedes-Benz

Mercedes-Benz unveiled its first pop-up camper for the U.S. market at the 2020 Chicago Auto Show. Drawing inspiration on models of the past, the Metris Weekender camper van features a wide range of convenience features with an updated, modern design.

This Weekender is intended to be adaptable to a variety of needs. Whether you're traveling cross country, heading out for a weekend getaway, or simply taking a day trip to the mountains, the Weekender adds to the experience.

Mercedes-Benz Metris Weekender Owners can pop out and pop up tents of the Metris Weekender.Photo courtesy of Mercedes-Benz

Standard features include an elevating roof with sleeping room for two, an integrated spring system, two-inch memory foam mattress, three windows, and extra USB ports for lights and charging. There's additional sleeping room from the multipurpose rear bench seat, which opens into a bed for two.

If it's not sleeping accommodations but cargo room, that same bench seat helps adapt the Weekender for cargo. It moves along a rail into four locations to accommodate a variety of needs. Available roof racks are perfect for surfboards, skis, and larger items and the Weekender can tow up to 5,000 pounds.

The front seats swivel 180 degrees to turn the interior into a living space where everyone can easily interact. The Weekender will get you where you need to go, and then make it quick and easy to set up camp and relax.

Optional features make the Weekender even more versatile with off-grid power and integrated solar panels. There's upgraded audio and navigation to make the trip more fun and a range of personalization options with 200 available 3M wraps from which to choose.

Mercedes-Benz Metris Weekender The model has room for sleeping, dining, and riding.Photo courtesy of Mercedes-Benz

An available eight-foot awning is ideal for lounging in the shade and offering rain protection while bug screens for the rear hatch and sliding doors keep insects away. There's also a tent that attaches to the rear lift gate offering extra space and privacy and even an available pullout rear kitchen.

The Metris Weekender offers comprehensive safety that includes crosswind assist, load adaptive electronic stability, and attention assist along with good fuel economy so longer trips are easier on the family budget. Its 15,000-mile service interval lets you drive further before you need to schedule maintenance.

Mercedes-Benz Metris Weekender The Weekender makes sleeping over easy with an available fold-out bed.Photo courtesy of Mercedes-Benz

Customers can order the Weekender from any authorized Mercedes-Benz dealer starting this spring. Pricing has yet to be announced.

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New SUV

New Jeep Compass Coming Soon

The Compass gets a major update for 2022.

Stellantis/Jeep

The Chicago Auto Show is happening now, which means we've already seen a few new models and concepts. Just yesterday, Jeep introduced the new 2022 Compass compact SUV. It gets a new design inside and out, updated tech, and a load of new available driver aids. The Compass' refresh comes as new models from Ford, Subaru and others could cut into Jeep's off-road dominance.

As it was in previous model years, the new Compass is powered by a 2.4-liter "Tigershark" four-cylinder engine that makes 177 horsepower and 172 pound-feet of torque. It's good for up to 31 mpg on the highway in 2WD models and can deliver a max towing capacity of up to 2,000 pounds in 4WD models. A six-speed automatic transmission is standard for Compass Sport and Latitude 4X2 models, while all others get a nine-speed automatic transmission that can handle the 20:1 crawl ratio setting in the Trailhawk model.

An all-new Latitude LUX trim joins the Compass lineup for 2022 as well. It features leather upholstery, heated front seats, a leather-wrapped heated steering wheel, an eight-way power driver seat, a seven-inch full-color gauge cluster, and the larger 10.1-inch screen.


2022 Jeep Compass The new Compass is more upscale than its predecessor.Stellantis/Jeep


The Compass comes with a class-leading 8.4-inch infotainment touchscreen, but higher trims get an even larger 10.1-inch unit. It offers standard wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and runs Uconnect 5, a colorful, responsive infotainment system with advanced features and tech.

Several new safety features make an appearance, but most are added-cost options. The highway assist system offers a semi-autonomous driving feature, which Jeep says will become available later. Other tech includes traffic sign recognition, standard pedestrian/cyclist automatic emergency braking, a surround-view camera system, parallel and perpendicular parking assist, and a long list of more traditional advanced driver aids like blind spot monitoring and parking sensors.

The Compass lineup for 2022 includes five trims: Sport, Latitude, Latitude LUX, Limited, and Trailhawk. Pricing for the new Compass starts at $26,490, including a $1,495 destination charge. At the top of the lineup, the Trailhawk and Limited models both start at $32,890. It's expected to start arriving on dealers' lots in fall 2021.


2022 Jeep Compass New color schemes highlight the Compass' interior.Stellantis/Jeep

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EQS buyers will have access to two years of free charging.

Electrify America

The Mercedes-Benz EQSis set to start hitting dealers' lots in just a few months, and the automaker is working drum up excitement for the all-new EV. Today, Electrify America announced that it will partner with Mercedes to offer charging services to buyers of the upcoming vehicle.

The agreement means that EQS owners will have two years of free charging, which includes 30-minute charging sessions at Electrify America locations. The services go a step further, however, and will include the ability to plug and charge. This means that EQS owners who have activated their Mercedes me Charge accounts can start a free charging session just by plugging the vehicle into the charger. Electrify America says that no authentication or initiation steps will be required.


2022 Mercedes-Benz EQS The EQS is due to hit the market in late 2021.Mercedes-Benz


The agreement between Mercedes-Benz and Electrify America will also extend some services to future EQ battery-electric vehicles, as well as future Mercedes plug-in hybrid vehicles. The company notes that there may be costs to charge for those vehicles, but drivers will still be able to use the Mercedes me app to initiate sessions.

As more automakers jump in the EV game, free charging partnerships are becoming a bigger deal. Just last month, Hyundai announced that buyers of its Ioniq 5 EV will receive two years of free charging from Electrify America, and Ford offered free charging to its Mustang Mach-E customers, also through Electrify America, though The Blue Oval's offer only extended to 250 kilowatt-hours.

2022 Mercedes-Benz EQS The partnership with Electrify America will provide access to chargers across the country.Mercedes-Benz


The EQS itself is Mercedes' first vehicle in what will become an electric sub-brand for the automaker. It will hit the market as a 2022 model late in 2021, and will be offered in two models. The entry level machine features 329 horsepower and 406 pound-feet of torque, while the up-level EQS 580 4Matic will see 516 horsepower and 611 pound-feet of torque. Beyond its electric powertrain, the EQS will offer several advanced tech features, including a 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster and a 17.7-inch touchscreen. Even the passenger gets a display in the new car, as a second 12.3-inch screen will be positioned on the right portion of the dash.

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