The new Mercedes-Benz B-Class puts the emphasis on sport with the Sports Tourer. It looks more dynamic than its predecessor and is more agile on the road while offering greater comfort. Its avant-garde interior makes for a unique feeling of space with the distinctive design of the instrument panel. One of the special features is a basic volume, which drops away towards the occupants and has cutouts in the area of the driver and front passenger. The intuitive user interface of the adaptive MBUX multimedia system is ground-breaking. Its strengths include brilliant graphics, “Hey Mercedes” voice control, a standard touch screen and functions such as MBUX Augmented Reality. When it comes to active safety, state-of-the-art driving assistance systems make the B-Class one of the segment leaders with functions carried over from the S-Class. In addition, the interior is now more spacious, while the engines are more efficient and cleaner. The eight-speed dual-clutch transmission makes its debut. Start of sales for the new B-Class is 3 December 2018, with delivery due to begin in February 2019.
“More practical than ever, more chic than ever,” is how Britta Seeger, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG, responsible for Mercedes-Benz Cars Sales, characterises the new B-Class. “In our portfolio of compacts, it’s the perfect vehicle for the whole family. And MBUX â€“ the new Mercedes-Benz User Experience â€“ provides also the B-Class with an all-new customer experience with functions that were previously the reserve of the luxury class.”
“The latest derivative of the new generation of compact cars from Mercedes-Benz, the B-Class writes a further punchy chapter in the success story of the dynamic Mercedes-Benz Sports Tourer,” says Gorden Wagener, Chief Design Officer of Daimler AG. “With its emotional yet purist design, the new B-Class blends seamlessly into the design language of Sensual Purity.”
The designers’ brief was to make the new B-Class stand out visually from the world of minivans. That brief was accepted and executed, with the long wheelbase (2729 mm) with short overhangs, slightly lowered roof line and larger, 16- to 19-inch wheels making for dynamic proportions. The relatively squat, progressive front end with flowing transition from bonnet to A-pillar and on to the windscreen, along with the muscular shoulder of the body, underlines the sporty overall look.
The same is true of the low-profile headlamps, the inside of which is already high-grade, detailed and precisely designed on the basic model with H7 headlamps and LED daytime running lights. When ordered with LED headlamps or higher, the B-Class comes with its own daytime running light signature in the form of a double torch. The optional MULTIBEAM LED headlamps have an especially sporty look. They allow fast, electronically controlled adjustment of the headlamps to suit the current traffic conditions. This feature from the luxury class, which made its debut in the compact segment in the new A-Class, now produces striking looks and added safety also in the new B-Class.
At the back, the width of the vehicle is accentuated by two-part lamps, reflectors integrated in the bumper and a distinctive black bumper bottom section with diffuser look and chrome trim strip. The large roof spoiler, along with high-gloss black spoilers at the sides of the rear window, makes for improved aerodynamics while ensuring a sporty appearance.
The cdÂ value of the new B-Class starts at 0.24 (predecessor: 0.25). The lower roof line further contributes to a best-in-class airflow due to the smaller end face of the car. In addition, the aerodynamics engineers have reduced the wind noise thanks to extensive detail work. The benefits: a high level of alertness as well as the ability to engage in a relaxed conversation.
The improved seat geometry and lower belt line make for an even more generous feeling of space than in the previous model. The driver sits 90 millimetres higher than in an A-Class, thus enjoying an especially good all-round view â€“ also thanks to optimised cross-sections of the roof pillars, which obscure less of the surroundings.
Interior design: revolution, the second
The interior of the B-Class is as avant-garde as the much-praised revolutionary interior architecture of the new A-Class, yet distinctive: while the instrument panel of the sister model is split into two horizontal basic bodies, that of the B-Class has a single basic volume, which drops away towards the occupants and has cutouts in the area of the driver and front passenger. The cutout in front of the driver houses the fully free-standing display unit, which comes in three different versions: with two 7-inch displays (17.78 cm), with one 7- and one 10.25-inch display (26 cm) and, in the Widescreen version, with two 10.25-inch displays. A head-up display is optionally available.
The five round air vents feature a high-grade turbine look with finely styled air ducts, inspired by the world of aviation. In the Style equipment line, the vent surround is colour-accentuated in the depth of the vent geometry to give the impression of an afterburner. The centre console with touch-based control and input system comes with a black panel look similar to the E-Class. The ambience lighting with 64 colours and ten colour worlds, a unique selling point in this segment, allows individual adjustments, even to suit the mood.
The seats offer a flatter and, therefore, more comfortable seating position as well as a larger adjustment range, which also increases the maximum headroom. There is also more space in the width: at 1456 millimetres (plus 33 mm), the front elbow width now has the dimensions of a mid-range vehicle.