B-Class Gets A Facelift

BY Azfar Hashim

A little nip and tuck to keep it relevant and even closer looking to its smaller A-Class sibling

More than 350,000 of the compact MPV have been sold since the market launch in late 2011. Now the best-seller from Mercedes-Benz has undergone a major facelift including exterior and interior enhancements along with attractive, redefined design and equipment lines.

"As the first member of a completely new generation of compact class, for us the B-Class paved the way for great success in this vehicle segment. The pioneer is now in better shape than ever," says Ola Källenius, Member of the Divisional Board Mercedes-Benz Cars responsible for Marketing & Sales. "The B-Class is the perfect (family) car for anyone who attaches importance to practicality, comfort and safety, but at the same time doesn't want to miss out on sportiness or driving dynamics."

The easiest way to recognise a facelifted B-Class is from the front: a new bumper, wide radiator trim with two louvres and now integral daytime running lamps in the headlamps give the vehicle a more organic and dynamic appearance. The rear bumper has also been modified and now features a contoured covering and an additional chrome trim strip.

LED High Performance headlamps create a more striking look, both day and night. These increase safety at night due to their wide beam pattern and light of a colour similar to daylight. Bicolour tail lamps, featuring LED technology, provide emphasis and make the vehicle more visible.

Inside, Mercedes-Benz has enhanced a number of high-quality details in the B-Class such as the large, free-standing head unit display, which is now larger, with a diagonal of up to 20.3 cm, and the stylish dial layout for the instrument cluster. There is a choice of 12 colours for the ambient lighting, allowing different moods to be created.

No further news has been confirmed from local Mercedes-Benz distributor, Cycle & Carriage Industries, whether a diesel version will be introduced for local buyers. However looking at the success of the current B-Class, we reckon only petrol variants (with 7-speed DCT) will be made available when it arrives here in the first half of 2015.

This facelifted B-Class comes with two 1.6-litre petrol variants, the B 180 and B 200. Both see slight improvements in power output: the B 180 now whips out 122 bhp (2 bhp bump) and 200 Nm, while the B 200, 156 bhp (also 2 bhp bump) and 200 Nm.