The new design incorporates some of Mercedes new design features like the front and rear lights, the more sporty grille and the prominent creases on the bodywork that give it a more dynamic appearance.
The interior is designed from scratch and adopts some of Mercedes’ new stylistic elements, like the circular vents seen in the SLS AMG. Mercedes claims that it sets new quality standards in its class and the dashboard can be optionally covered in hand crafter leather finish and stitching.
Other highlights include the new three-spoke steering wheel, the new vents and the 5.8 or, optionally, 7.0-inch TFT color display.
On the options list one can also find the Easy-Vario-Plus system, which allows for the easy adjustment of the rear seats by 140 mm, varying luggage space from 488 to 666 liters, and a folding passenger seat that further enhances practicality.
Mercedes says the small MPV is more agile on the road than its predecessor without compromising comfort thanks to the new four-link rear suspension, the lower center of gravity and the upgraded ESP.
Buyers can opt for the sports suspension, which is 20 mm lower than the standard and features selective damping shock absorbers, plus a Direct Steer system that becomes more direct at greater steering angles enhancing the car’s agility.
The new B-Class will be offered with a wide range of petrol and diesel engines, all of which have an auto stop/start system as standard. The new, M270 four-cylinder petrol engines sport Mercedes’ third generation direct injection system and have been designed for both transverse (like the B-Class) and longitudinal installation.
The petrol engine available at launch is a 1.6-liter unit with either 122 HP and 200 Nm (147.5 lb/ft) of torque for the B 180, or 156 HP and 250 Nm for the B 200.
The four-cylinder turbo diesel is a development of the common-rail OM651 unit that powers a wide range of models, from the C- to the S-Class. In this configuration, its displacement has been reduced to 1.8 liters and, like its petrol counterpart, is available in two versions: with 109HP and 250 Nm for the B 180 CDI and with 136 HP and 300 Nm for the B 200 CDI.
Another novelty for the B-Class is the extremely compact 7G-DCT seven-speed dual clutch gearbox, while the standard six-speed manual transmission offers easier shifting and lower weight.
The new B-Class will be offered in four equipment levels (Chrome, Sports, Exclusive and Night).
Being a Mercedes, the B-Class couldn’t do without a comprehensive list of safety features such as adaptive headlights, blind-spot, lane keeping, attention and speed limit assist systems, and for the first time in the class offers the PRE-SAFE preventive occupant protection system by optimizing all safety parameters if it detects a probable collision.