All-New Mercedes-Benz V-Class Production Begins
The new V-Class combines the best of two worlds: the functionality of a van and the strengths of a Mercedes-Benz car
by John Clark | 03 March 2014
The first new V-Class rolled off the production line today at the Mercedes-Benz plant in Vitoria, Spain. The production start of the Mercedes among MPVs is another milestone in Mercedes-Benz Vans’ growth strategy and strengthens the second-largest van plant in the division’s global production network. The new V-Class combines the best of two worlds: the functionality of a van and the characteristic strengths of a Mercedes-Benz car. These strengths range from an emotive design and high-quality interior appointments to exemplary safety features and efficient driving pleasure. In these ways, Mercedes-Benz Vans is completely redefining the MPV segment.
“The new V-Class has many new features that are without parallel in this segment. They will allow us to address new customer groups. In particular, we will be able to reach customers who have previously preferred to buy a traditional car even though they actually need the space that an MPV offers,” said Volker Mornhinweg, Head of Mercedes-Benz Vans, as the first series-produced V-Class was completed. This vehicle is primarily targeted at three groups of customers: families with two or more children, people who are very active in their leisure time and have large amounts of sports and outdoor equipment, and operators of luxury VIP or hotel shuttle buses.
Big investments strengthen the production plant
Daimler AG invested extensively in the Mercedes-Benz plant in Vitoria, Spain, to prepare the facility for the production of the new V-Class. The investment of around €190 million primarily covered the modernization and reorganization of the plant’s body shop, paint shop, and assembly units. The site’s logistics were also optimized. “Today is a very special day for our plant, and we are all very proud to manufacture the new V-Class here in Vitoria,” says Emilio Titos, Head of the Vitoria production plant. “All of the employees worked extremely hard to make this day happen and prepare themselves for the new production processes. This shows that we have a highly motivated and qualified team whose members are highly committed to their work. I would like to thank you very much for this achievement, and I hope that we are all very successful with the new V-Class.”
The approximately 600,000-square-meter Mercedes-Benz plant is the only automotive factory in the Basque region. With its approximately 3,100 employees, it is also one of the largest industrial enterprises in the area. This facility in northwestern Spain, which was built in the early 1950s, has been producing the Viano and the Vito van since 2003. From Vitoria, the vehicles are being exported globally and are sold in Europe, Asia, Russia and Africa. Around 75,000 vehicles roll off the production line each year.
About the new V-Class
The new V-Class sets new standards for its segment from both an aesthetic and a technological point of view. The styling makes the vehicle stand out from the crowd and is in line with Mercedes-Benz’ new car design idiom. In addition, the new V-Class is the only MPV to include a wide range of assistance systems that combine safety with comfort. These systems include the standard-fitted Crosswind Assist and the optional active parking assist. The latter makes parking the MPV as easy as parking a compact car. Best-in-class fuel efficiency is ensured by cutting-edge turbodiesel engines boasting incredibly low fuel consumption values of 5.7 to 6.0 liters per 100 kilometers. The new V-Class is also a standout because of its great spaciousness and its wide variety of seating and cargo configurations. The separately opening rear window, which enables users to access a second luggage compartment, is a special highlight for the easy loading and unloading of cargo.
The new premium MPV will be appearing at all Mercedes-Benz car and commercial vehicle dealerships at the end of May. Because the vehicle will be available through both sales channels, all customer groups can be optimally served.