Review: 2020 Mercedes-Benz V 220d Avantgarde Long
European automakers, particularly German ones, have generally not delved much into people haulers. Rather, they have proven their worth in aesthetics and engineering via more compact forms. These brands have, by and large, shown that one need not be loud to be noticed.
Mercedes-Benz might have had other plans in mind when it developed the V-Class. Such a big beauty definitely gives its Japanese and American competitors a run for their money with the comfort and, of course, elegance that it offers.
Billed as a “spacious sedan with a star,” the Mercedes V-Class—particularly the 2020 Mercedes-Benz V 220d Avantgarde Long—shows that people carriers can have the same kind of luxury as smaller vehicles.
The 2020 Mercedes-Benz V 220d Avantgarde Long is 5.14 meters long, 1.928 meters wide and 1.9 meters high, with a 3.2-meter wheelbase. While this is ample room for many families, the brand also offers the Extra Long variant for even more space.
The ground clearance is not that tall, so make sure you treat the van right by not running fast on potholes and humps – not to mention floodwaters.
Another good thing about this five-door van is that it is wide-opening, meaning occupants can easily get in and out through spacious doorways.
Despite its size, the overall design of the 2020 Mercedes-Benz V 220d Avantgarde Long exudes sexiness with sleek lines that start at the bonnet. This complements the proud chrome grille that wears a pair of huge horizontal lines running through the intimidatingly large three-pointed star in the middle.
The sweeping lines of the van continue to its sides; and the wide window designs give its passengers more view of the outdoors, thus reducing the possibility of motion sickness, which turns every ride into an enjoyable trip.
Going to the rear, the simple but effective design of the taillights demonstrate that functionality and good design are enough to do the trick.
A six-seat configuration gives all passengers sufficient space to comfortably rest on the leather seats with sturdy armrests. The two front seats are electronically adjusted with the driver’s seat having three-memory adjustment buttons for easy configuration.
Also, the usually occupied space between the driver and co-pilot—a space typically taken by the vehicle’s transmission lever (or an awkwardly placed middle seat)—has been left open, so that even the passengers at the back portion of the vehicle can have access to the infotainment system.
The middle-row occupants enjoy a pair of tables for a comfortable meal or for working on a laptop. However, if you want to stretch a bit, you can open the rear door and work on the platform, where a pair of laptops (or any gadgets or equipment of such length) can be stowed.
It’s good to know that the Avantgarde trim is not, well, too avant garde. Everything is Mercedes-Benz-good and up to expectations. The interior hues should have a calming effect on occupants – with the white stitching on the black leather and the black vinyl with doublestripe design on the dashboard and rear panels upping the ante in this category. Occupant centricity is always the name of the game for Mercedes-Benz, and it’s no different in the 2020 Mercedes-Benz V 220d Avantgarde Long.
The 2020 Mercedes-Benz V 220d Avantgarde Long is powered by a 2.1-liter CDI turbodiesel matched to a seven-speed automatic gearbox 7G-Tronic that can provide ample performance — via a maximum of 163 horsepower and 380Nm of torque. It is also interesting to note that the said power mill registers very little lag and vibrations, adding to the reasons why every trip is enjoyable.
Since diesel engines are always welcome in the Philippines, this van could be a possible winner under the German brand. Also, the normal high pulling power of a diesel engine gives it better chances of surviving heavy Metro Manila traffic. After testing, it returned a fuel economy rating of around 10 kilometers per liter, making it a more responsible fuel sipper.
The leather steering wheel has enough buttons (not crowded), which gives the pilot more time to navigate on the road rather than fiddle with the vehicle’s infotainment system. Aside from the control buttons on the steering wheel, navigation options on the infotainment system are also available in the center console via touchpad and buttons and a big, shiny knob underneath it.
NVH levels have been managed, so passengers can enjoy the ride, along with the clear sound of music via Burmester speakers.
Safety features that are fitted in the 2020 Mercedes-Benz V 220d Avantgarde Long include electric parking brakes, 360 and rearview display, active parking assist, automatic folding mirrors and six airbags (dual front, curtain and side) and an Isofix system.
Priced at P4.89 million (and only P4.39 million this September), this Mercedes-Benz van, though more expensive than the average van, is about getting your money’s worth. After all, aren’t you willing to pay a good premium on comfort and elegance for your family? The 2020 Mercedes-Benz V 220d Avantgarde Long offers exactly that.
Photo/s from Ruben D. Manahan IV