New Mercedes B-class – full reveal image

Mercedes Benz unveiled official information and photos of the new B Class, ahead of the Frankfurt auto show that will come next month.

The new Mercedes B-Class is a bigger step forward than it might look at first glance. It’s a couple of inches lower to the ground and there are hints of it being a baby R-class tourer rather than a boxy babywagon van. It is the first model to be based on Mercedes’ new front-wheel drive MFA (modular front architecture) compact car platform.

“No model change in the history of Mercedes-Benz has ever seen so many new
developments introduced in one fell swoop,” stresses Dr. Thomas Weber, Member of the Board of Management responsible for Group Research and Head of Development, Mercedes-Benz Cars.

Merc B-Class Powertrains
The new four-cylinder petrol engines (internal designation M270) will be the basic petrol engine and marks the launch of a completely new engine series. In the new Mercedes B Class, this petrol will be available in two configurations: the B 180 rated at 90 kW (122 hp) and the B 200 with an
output of 115 kW (156 hp). The maximum torque stands at 200 and 250 Nm respectively.
As about the diesels, the B180 and B200CDI will be powered by the 1.8 liter OM651 diesel engine. The B 180 CDI generates 80 kW (109 hp) of power, while the B 200 CDI has an output of 100 kW (136 hp). Total torque stands at 250 Nm from 1400 rpm for the 80 kW variant and 300 Nm from 1600 rpm for the 100 kW variant.
New for the 2012 B-class is a seven-speed twin-clutch transmission. All engines come with stop-start, and a six-speed manual will be standard on most models.
Revealed here ahead of a Frankfurt motor show, the new 2012 Mercedes B Class is 4359mm long, 1786mm wide and 1557mm tall – compared to the old model its 89mm longer, 11mm wider and 48mm lower.

Exterior and interior design

At the exterior, first you notice the side line: the bonnet flows seamlessly into the A-pillar and the roof line descends sleekly to the striking roof spoiler. The roof features a swage line which lends the vehicle a longer appearance.

Inside, the current car’s austere, angular design has gone, replaced by a curvy dash with large circular air vents. B-Class buyers will be able to choose from four different interior packages: Exclusive, Chrome, Sports and Basic.

The Exclusive interior comes with a dash top formed from the German car maker’s faux leather that it dubs Artico (the name Drive believes is a touch of German humour, being an abbreviation for artificial cow).

The new B Class is optionally available with the so-called EASY-VARIO-PLUS system. This enables simple reorganisation of the interior so as to enable the transportation of bulky items. Features of the EASY-VARIO-PLUS system include fore/aft adjustment of the rear seats by up to 140 millimetres (thereby increasing the luggage compartment volume from 488 to 666 litres) and a front passenger seat whose backrest can be folded forward onto the seat cushion.

For the first time in the compact segment, the new B Class will come with a radar-based collision warning system with adaptive Brake Assist as standard, which lowers the risk of rear-end collisions. Also, new is the Mercedes PRE-SAFE system – reversible belt tensioning, the closing of side windows and sliding sunroof in case of critical lateral dynamics and adjustment of the fully electric front passenger seat with memory function to an ideal position for maximum effectiveness of the restraint systems.

The car will be available to European dealers in November 2011. Price from £21,500 (est – UK)

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