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Mercedes updates mid-weight

Drivetrain

The front drive Vito will use a 1.6-litre diesel delivering 88hp and 114hp, while rear drive models will use the proven 2.2-litre diesel rated at 136hp, 163hp and, in 119 BlueTec form, a

powerful 190hp. That range-topping engine, which replaces the previous 3.0-litre V6, is also the first Euro 6 diesel in this mid-weight class.

Six-speed manual gearboxes are standard on all models up to the 119 BlueTec, which comes as standard with a 7G-Tronic Plus seven-speed automatic transmission. The auto box is available as an option on the two lower powered

Low friction axles, electro-mechanical steering and auxiliaries and those redesigned engines combine to offer up to an average 20% fuel saving across the range. The Vito 116 CDI BlueEfficiency model is said to offer up to 49.6mpg. All Vito models will have 25,000 mile/two year service intervals.

Practicality

Vito continues to be offered in two wheelbases and three body lengths. However all three are 140mm longer than the previous model, though most of that has gone into an extended front end for improved pedestrian protection. That said, the smoother design at the front does play a part in a drop in Cd value to just 0.32, contributing to the fuel savings.

The vans can be had with three gross weights of 2.8 tonnes, 3.05 tonnes and an uprated 3.2 tonnes. The compact front drive engine contributes to a maximum payload of up to 1,289kg for a FWD medium wheelbase van. However rear drive models with the new 3.2-tonne gross weight can carry up to an impressive 1,369kg.

Safety

Adaptive ESP and all-round disc brakes are standard across the range and the vans have driver and passenger airbags and seatbelt reminders as standard. Other standard kit includes Attention Assist and Crosswind Assist, already seen on the larger Sprinter van since last year.

Options include Active Parking Assist, Blind Spot Assist and Lane Keeping Assist. There is also the option of Mercedes’ Intelligent Lighting System, consisting of LED indicators, LED daytime running lights and LED low-beam headlights with a cornering function. Depending on road speed, the headlamps also adapt by varying light distribution to meet the needs of motorway or country road driving.

People carriers

Mercedes is introducing the Vito Tourer alongside the standard Crew Bus people carrying model. Available in Tourer Pro and Tourer Select trim, Vito can be tailored for a range of people carrying duties.

Tourer models can be provided with up to eight airbags and a comfort suspension system with less taut springs for increased comfort.