The start point for the best source of fleet information
Mercedes has moved its V-class executive people carrier away from the Vito panel van in styling terms to differentiate the carrying of important people from important loads.
The new V-class is a cutting-edge and stylish machine that has successfully established its own identity, with the front and rear lamp clusters particularly prevalent.
But the vehicle is really all about what's on the inside. The rear can be specced with either four individual chairs, with the option of a table between them, or a two rows of three, all with three-point seat belts. Any or all can be removed to create van-like loading space; however, despite Mercedes describing it as "very little effort", the seats are heavy and bulky and take some moving for a person on their own.
Up front there could do with being more room for taller drivers to slide the seat back, but everything looks good, is designed logically and works well in the cabin.
Power comes from 2.1-litre four-cylinder engines of 163hp in the V220 CDI and, driven here, 190hp in the V250 CDI, while the efficiency figures read an official 49.6mpg and 149g/km and 44.8mpg and 166g/km respectively, all connected to Mercedes' automatic 7G-tronic transmission. Both are considerable improvements on the previous model's emissions.
The only real rival is VW's Caravelle, which is cheaper but not as good-looking, good to drive or well-appointed inside. With the 180hp 2.0 BiTDI engine it does almost match the V-class for power, but that comes at a price, with emissions at 199g/km for a 37.2mpg official average economy.
But the LWB SE Caravelle is more than £5500 cheaper, so you're paying for the luxury. Below that, the likes of Ford's Tourneo Custom or the Vauxhall Vivaro have eight-seat versions, but they're not in the league of the leather-seated V-class, which carries a residual value north of 40% and an impressive list of equipment.
Mercedes set out to show that "an elegant and dynamic appearance is also possible in XXL size", an aim it has achieved.
Mercedes V-class 250 CDI 190 Sport Extra Long
Model price range £41,610-£47,200
Residual value 40.2%
Service, maintenance and repair £2879
Vehicle Excise Duty £705
National Insurance £6058
Cost per mile 94.1p
Fuel consumption 44.8mpg
CO2 (BIK band) 166g/km (31%)
BIK 20/40% per month £244/£488
Warranty 3yrs/unlimited miles
Boot space (min/max) 1410/6660 litres
Engine size/power 2143cc/190hp
Unrivalled prestige and quality for multiple-executive transport