Vans

Mercedes debuts new V-Class van, promises electric EQV concept for Geneva

It's just a refresh, but the promise of an electric one is great.

Mercedes-Benz

The Mercedes V-Class, known as the Metris here in the US, is an eminently capable van. Now Mercedes has refreshed it with some new kit, and it promises to bring a near-production electric concept to the Geneva Motor Show, too.

The refreshed Mercedes V-Class doesn't look all that different from its forebear. The main exterior visual update comes by way of a new front bumper that makes the whole thing look a bit wider. There are multiple design "lines" available to add additional flair, including an AMG Line upgrade that adds AMG's flashy "diamond" grille design, along with unique wheels.

The interior keeps its design pretty close to other new-ish Mercedes-Benz models, with a flowing center console that houses delicate switchgear and the rotary controller for the infotainment system. The V-Class adopts the same "turbine"-style HVAC vents as other Mercedes vehicles, and the instrument cluster has some new gauges to take in. You can have the trim made from wood, carbon fiber or aluminum, and if you want to get really fancy, you can wrap the seats in some premium leather.

It's worth noting that, for now, these changes only apply to the V-Class sold outside the US. Mercedes-Benz has not made any announcements about the Metris in the US, so it's unclear when (or if) some of these changes will come Stateside.

The EQV concept hasn't been teased yet, but expect it to look a bit more futuristic than the regular ol' V-Class seen here.

Mercedes-Benz

If you opt for a passenger-oriented V-Class configuration, things can get real fancy. The first row of rear seats can be optioned to include full recline functionality, in addition to offering a back massage function. Now that is how you live the van life.

Under the hood, there's a new diesel engine that will probably never see the light of day in the US. This new four-cylinder diesel puts out 239 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque. A nine-speed automatic transmission replaces the old seven-speed box, and rear-wheel drive is standard.

Mercedes-Benz also beefed up the V-Class' complement of safety tech. A new automatic emergency braking system can detect cars, pedestrians and stationary objects, either priming the brake for human intervention or taking control of the brakes to avoid or otherwise diminish the effects of a collision. There's also a new automatic high-beam system that basically leaves the high beams on at all times, deactivating some of the LEDs when oncoming traffic is detected to prevent dazzling other drivers.

That's not all from Mercedes-Benz's van division, though. At the 2019 Geneva Motor Show in March, the automaker will introduce the Concept EQV, a near-production preview of a battery-electric van that Mercedes intends to bring to production. We don't know much about it, but then again, we don't have long to wait until we see it, either.

Mercedes-Benz Metris: Check out Roadshow's long-term Metris.

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