Review of Mercedes Benz India’s B Class – To B or…

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Mercedes-Benz B 180 AT Base

Review of Mercedes Benz B Class – To B or not to B!

Posted by autocarma December 10, 2012 ⋅ 1

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The childhood dream never A lot of us Indian’s have one thing in We would have a dream car in (more specifically, a car made by a manufacturer) by the time we could the 13 tables. And I can bet you that your dream brand would been Mercedes Benz. is probably because Merc was the luxury brand in India.

stands between you and your In this case about INR 35 However, all that is about to With the launch of the B Class and the A Class lined up for next owning a three-pointed star for VW money is becoming a reality. So the B MB India has made several moves. The first being they have entered is perceived as forbidden territory by manufacturers. And that is having a for the price of a luxury sedan. MB India sold every B Class they imported in the lot! In fact do not expect to get B Class delivered before Feb if you book now. The second move being that the B is a CBU (Completely Built Unit) And that means higher norms. The third being only a petrol engine is on But enough of that jibber Lets talk about the

You’ll be in for a very pleasant when you see a B Class in the flesh than on a computer screen. is because the B Class is not exactly a car. It looks much The car has generous proportions in all departments, and height taking a major I generally don’t talk in about the exteriors as it is very and varies from person to However, that said, I the way the B Class looks. It has a beautiful going on, right from the front grill, the ‘waterfall’ headlamp cluster, the slightly MPV side profile and the E Class tail lamps closing the The highlight of the B Class is that it to look big without being and that shows while the car inside the city as well. Oh and it is a head turner as well. A lot of overtake/stop to have a second at the most affordable three-pointed in the country. Some even about the price. (And move away disappointed but come to that later)

MB India has two trim levels of the B on offer, a standard B180 and the Sport. Certain exterior such as twin tailpipes, fatter alloy wheels and running lights separate the from the standard visually. The also has a very attractive sunroof while the standard not.

The Interior 

Even getting in to the car, you would the solidly built door closes with a satisfying sound’. Even while in to the B Class, it amazes you with a user-friendly ingress/egress. You don’t to crouch and be a gymnast to get your in to the foot well.

Now for the interiors. You have no clue which you’re sitting in until tells you. It is that The build quality and attention to is staggering most of the time and in a few areas as well. Only the door handle seems to be a bit to operate. Everything else in the is top-notch. Right from the you adjust the electrical seat the buttons mounted on the door to the ORVM’s. The interior ambience and quality will leave you Adjusting the ‘360 degree’ SLS AMG air vents is something special. It like there are motors their movement each you turn them. The driver’s is one of the most comfortable seats as The Mercedes COMMAND screen is present on the B Class and it tends to like an aftermarket fitment. The lever is mounted on the steering while the wiper adjustment and share a single stalk. It can be a bit to use it at first but nothing you won’t get to. The Sport variant also with Cruise Control and really neat wood ash on the dashboard.

Moving to the rear seats Rear space is decent for people to sit abreast. The center however loses on some thigh support compared to the You can definitely sit in a very relaxed as long as the person in the front is not tall. I found the minimum to be a bit short as your knees to hit the plastic back of the front However, if the front seats are not all the way behind (I’m 5’10’’ rear legroom is very acceptable.

The B Class features a big boot as well. At 486 L with all in place, the shape of the boot allow your huge to sit comfortably. However, as you may see in the picture, the wheel is kept on the boot rather than beneath it. So have to juggle things to get maximum space. With all the folded, the B Class will 1545 L of luggage and the “Sports moniker starts to take the interiors deserve a special of appreciation. What I really is that the interiors speak the of a luxury sedan, rather an affordable luxury hatchback. genuine effort by MB India be appreciated by their customers as

Engine, Performance Fuel

As I said before, the B Class is only with a petrol for now. And the petrol in question is a 4-cylinder engine. It develops at 5000rpm and generates 200Nm of from 1250rpm. Power is to the front wheels via a 7 speed Yes, the B Class is the first from the MFA platform of Mercedes in India. MB India claim comes up in 10.2 seconds the B Class will achieve a top of 190km/h. A lot of you may quickly point out even something like a Altis is quicker and faster. But are you of entering a drag race a B Class? And with our present of highways, the top speed of the car is irrelevant. could have probably got the version of the same engine.

Anyway, how does the B Class on our roads? It feels a bit more while driving than on that’s for certain. If you’re in start-stop traffic, the B Class very smooth and it feels Leave the gearbox in fully and you can focus your attention on else. It feels very Closing gaps in traffic take getting used to the automatic is a bit slow to downshift. could be for economy reasons but you can use the paddle shifters to get a quick on. Also, while driving it in a manner, the engine is hardly You’ll want more on the front only after full bore launches. For all purposes, I find the B Class to an adequate engine.

The B Class with three driving – economy, manual and sports. In mode, you take complete of the gearshifts while in economy it is automatic. I found that it in the sports mode did not significantly the performance of the car. The transmission at the redline and holds on to the lowest gear. Apart from the Sports mode does to alter the driving characteristic of the B. It the B Class very noisy and is left unused unless serious on going fast.

The B also features an Eco button is in the interest of increasing the fuel It also has a Start/Stop function activated. When driven the B Class can deliver 9-10km/l in the and probably 14km/l on the highway. the fuel efficiency drops when you’re a bit more on the throttle. You can use the normal unleaded and there is no need to use high-octane for the B Class.

Ride Quality and

The ride quality is probably the disappointing area of the B Class. on roads with minor the B Class sends shock in the cabin. You’ll find slowing down to a very speed after a few times so you’re not shaken about. The it makes when it goes rough patches is also like. In fact, existing owners will definitely the ride quality unacceptable for a car the ‘three stars’. It feels as good as something like a Sunny or a SX4, there is Mercedes about it at all. I the ride quality to be a huge from what I expected. And that Mercedes are the pioneers in department with the C, E and the S Class, a lot tuning should have done specifically for the Indian

Note: The test car was the B180 and comes with 17’’ We think that the lower with 16’’ wheels offer a different ride.

very un-Mercedes quality of the B was the sound insulation. You expect not to anything when you close the of a Merc. Unfortunately, the B Class not have that special and even conversations taking outside the cabin can be heard.

The B handles in a very safe and manner. Under steer is control and for a front wheel car with MPV proportions, the B can even be as a fun car to drive about. The steering tremendous feel at all speeds and you feel in control of the car. It very well to steering as well. Overall, the B Class has the department well sorted

Features and Equipment

The B Class all the right boxes when it to features and equipment. Because it is a you can be rest assured that is well taken care of the standard array of airbags, TCS and Pre-Safe. Both variants get wheels, albeit in different You get Bi-Xenon’s on the Sport trim as as LED daytime lights. Cruise and sunroof is available on the Sport as However, I really think it is time Mercedes make COMMAND screen a bit more and a bit less boring.

Mercedes-Benz B 180 AT Base


A lot of you may have skipped to this of the review and with good How much does the most luxury car from Mercedes (By the way, the B Class can enjoy title for only a small of time with the A Class on its MB India announced a price of INR lakhs for the base and 24.87 for the Sport. Both being prices. However, with all one has to consider the on-road price to the heavy taxation. As a result, the Sport comes at a ‘all of a expensive’ price of nearly 32 on road Chennai! And about 5 of that is just for registration and RTO

Mercedes now faces a problem. Let me you an example. Person ‘X’ is confident on a B Class and goes to his nearest with his cheque book. he is told to wait, he casually the price list displayed. He that the price difference a B180 Sport and a base C is only about INR 2 lakhs price). Person X’s face up. Even though he is not a car aficionado, he that a C Class is much premium than a B Class, in alphabet and the Mercedes lineup. He that the C is a sedan while the B is a the C has impeccable ride while the B not so and finally he knows that the C has a engine than the B. The C is also in a segment than the B and that boosts Person X’s ego. he is contemplating, he sees an advertisement the showroom from a prominent bank offering car loans at a low EMI. Even though is not his subject, it takes only a for him to realize that for a few thousand extra every month, he can own a and better car. X is sold on the and the dealer has sold a C. Instead of a B And that is the biggest problem of the B In a move to launch a more product below the C Class, the B gives you even more to buy the C Class.

However, lets the C Class cannibalizing into the B sales for a moment and focus on the Is the B Class a good car? Yes it is. It a lot of things very well and my problem with the B is its poor quality. The interior build is faultless and that is the core of the B. So what can you get for about the same You can find a full-fledged sedan in the S60 D3 diesel. It costs nearly the as the B and is a CBU as well. It is a diesel as well and we found our S60 to offer a dull experience, (check out our Issue #7) it has the neatly covered.

For about INR 1 lakh more the on-road price of the B180 you can get the BMW 3 Series in its newly launched guise. BMW India has slipped in model without much but it comes to 28.5 lakh and being a local assembly, the tax be low as well. And you can be rest assured the BMW will offer better and driving pleasure than the B

Coming back to that problem of the B Class I was mentioning. It has two going against it. The steep and the lack of a diesel. With the offering products that their USP’s cut out for them at that are affordable as well, MB have to double their and get a localized diesel variant of the B The B Class is no doubt a very car, but, in the current scenario, there are better for more or less the same Merc’s very own C Class a prime example.

What we

Faultless Build quality


Easy to drive

What we Dislike

Ride poor

Sound insulation be better

Mercedes-Benz B 180 AT Base
Mercedes-Benz B 180 AT Base

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