Mercedes Sprinter review

Category: Large Van

Section: Introduction

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Mercedes-Benz Sprinter front
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  • Mercedes-Benz Sprinter front
  • Mercedes-Benz Sprinter front
  • Mercedes-Benz Sprinter interior
  • Mercedes-Benz Sprinter parked
  • Mercedes-Benz Sprinter infotainment
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What Car? says...

If any brand has come the closest to making the perfect van, it has to be Mercedes-Benz. The Mercedes-Benz Sprinter has won countless awards, has legions of loyal customers and has improved like a fine wine through more than 20 years of gradual refinements.

The latest third-generation model is no exception, but in the current digital age the Sprinter, a humble van, is trying to keep up with the trends by adding connectivity and voice control to its repertoire of talents.

Like its closest competition, the Ford Transit and Volkswagen Crafter, the Sprinter has a wealth of body types to choose from and has also now added a front-wheel drive configuration to the existing rear-wheel drive and four-wheel drive options. There are four body lengths, three roof heights and – in addition to panel van models – there are crew cabs, chassis cabs, chassis crew cabs, dropside bodies and minibus Tourer versions.

Power initially came from a four-cylinder 2.1-litre diesel with 111bhp, 143bhp and 163bhp outputs, as well as a 3.0-litre diesel V6 engine producing 187bhp. These all met Euro-6 emissions requirements.

However, the introduction of Euro-6d engine regulations meant that the 2.1-litre engine had to be revised and the range revamped. The line-up now consists of a similar 2.1-litre unit producing 143bhp, along with a 2.0-litre engine producing 148bhp or 168bhp. Front-wheel-drive is limited to the 2.1-litre engine, while rear-wheel-drive is the only option for the 2-litre vans.

A six-speed manual gearbox is standard across all vans, but a nine-speed 9G-Tronic automatic option is available on all models.  The 7G Tronic Plus gearbox has now been deleted from the range, having previously been available on all 2.1-litre engine models. There’s also the option of a fully electric Sprinter van. The Mercedes-Benz eSprinter is front-wheel drive and is single drive – meaning there is no gearbox.

Trim options in the Sprinter start with the Pure model, followed by Progressive and finally Power. Mercedes briefly abandoned dedicated trim levels, instead allowing the Sprinter to be customised with various option packs. While the packs, which include the Driver Pack, Comfort Pack, Premium Pack, Active Safety Pack, Lane Tracking Pack and Comfort Pack Plus, all remain available, much of the equipment is incorporated into the new trim tiers.  Equipment like parking sensors and electric heated door mirrors, right through to less obvious options like covered storage compartments or an adjustable steering wheel, are all available.

Read on to find out how the Sprinter compares with its key rivals.

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