Mercedes Sprinter review

Category: Large Van

Section: Performance & drive

Mercedes-Benz Sprinter front
  • Mercedes-Benz Sprinter front
  • Mercedes-Benz Sprinter front
  • Mercedes-Benz Sprinter interior
  • Mercedes-Benz Sprinter parked
  • Mercedes-Benz Sprinter infotainment
  • Mercedes-Benz Sprinter front
  • Mercedes-Benz Sprinter front
  • Mercedes-Benz Sprinter interior
  • Mercedes-Benz Sprinter parked
  • Mercedes-Benz Sprinter infotainment
What Car?’s Sprinter deals

Performance & drive

What it’s like to drive, and how quiet it is

With a revised range of engines from 143bhp to 170bhp, the Sprinter no longer has significantly more power than its rivals

While the entry-level 2.1-litre engine is essentially the same unit that has been used in the Sprinter van since its upgrade to Euro-6 engines in 2014, and remains on a par with rivals in terms of performance and efficiency, the new 2.0-litre engine is a thoroughly modern and efficient engine. For that reason, the 143bhp unit would not be our choice, unless you needed to have a front-wheel-drive van (which gets you a fraction more in terms of payload).

The six-speed manual gearbox is well paired to all the engine options, and as such there’s little need to opt for the nine-speed automatic. If you do need an automatic gearbox, however, the 9G-Tronic is a smooth unit that responds quickly to kickdown requests and seamlessly shifts up and down through the gears.

Our biggest gripe is with one of the safety features that has been introduced to make the van even better. Along with Adaptive Cruise Control, Lane Keeping Assist is a safety feature designed to make motorway miles, in particular, much easier and safer. Yet, in the Sprinter lane keeping is corrected through the use of the brakes rather than the steering. The net result is severe breaking on the opposite side of the vehicle to the direction you’re straying in which prevents you leaving the lane.

The downside is sometimes a significant reduction in speed which can startle other drivers, but in the Sprinter’s defence, Mercedes says the drastic braking is in fact to startle the driver to make sure they adjust their driving wayward driving.

Mercedes-Benz Sprinter front