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Sunday 19 August 2018

New generation Merc Sprinter 2018 unveiled


Merc Sprinter 2018Mercedes-Benz Vans has pulled the covers off its third generation Sprinter; no revolutionary re-design, but it’s a very different story under the skin. For starters it will be available with front-wheel drive for the first time, adding 50kg to its payload potential and lowering the rear loading height by 80mm. On sale in the UK from June (2018), FWD variants will sit alongside more familiar rear- and all-wheel drive models.


Power for the new Sprinter comes from basically the same 2.1-litre four-cylinder and 3.0-litre V6 diesels as the current range, regardless of the chosen drivetrain. The only difference is that the 2.1-litre is mounted transversely in FWD models and has one, rather than a twin-turbo set-up. Output choice for FWD is 114hp and143hp, with a 177hp version reserved for the camper van market. Go for RWD or AWD and it’s 114hp, 143hp, 163hp and the mighty 190hp V6.

Merc Sprinter 2018A six-speed manual gearbox is fitted across the board, but in the case of RWD and AWD there’s the option of a seven-speed 7G-TRONIC PLUS torque converter auto ’box which features Drive Select; Merc-speak for being able to manually shift gear. Front-wheel drive variants , however, can be specified with a new nine-speed automatic torque converter transmission.

All powerplants are fitted with a Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) system so regular topping-up with AdBlue is required. The good news, however, is that the tank size has been raised from the current 18 litres to 22 litres, increasing the range between fill-ups. Service intervals are a maximum of 37,250 miles/two years for FWD and AWD models, reducing to 24,850miles/two years for those with the front wheels driven. Merc has done away with the dipstick, by the way. Oil level is now checked electronically from the comfort of the cab.

There will be an all-electric eSprinter, but we are going to have to wait until 2019 before that reaches dealerships. The eVito is expected to hit UK showrooms in the last quarter of 2018.

Merc Sprinter 2018Gross vehicle weights start at 3.0t and go up to 4.1t in the case of FWD, and 5.5t for RWD. Wheelbases go from 3,250mm to 4,325mm and gross payload and load area capacity peak at 3,150kg and 17.0m3 respectively. Available load lengths range from 2,732mm to 4,810mm, maximum internal width is 1,787mm and load height starts at 1,719mm up to a maximum of 2,243mm.

The new cab interior has been designed to be as flexible as possible and provide the driver with all the creature comforts. As we would expect, this latest generation Sprinter is simply bristling with all the latest driver aid, infotainment and connectivity tech and we’ll go more into the detail once the UK specifications and availability are announced. In the meantime, take a look at the infographics below to whet the appetite.

From what we have seen so far of this third generation Sprinter, Merc seems to have covered all the bases. All that remains now is to get behind the wheel, but we will have to wait until April for that to happen; can’t wait.

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