Sprinter van front-runner in space race

Mercedes-Benz Sprinter panel van is a true workhorse with a huge capacity.

Mercedes-Benz Sprinter panel van is a true workhorse with a huge capacity. - Credit: Mercedes-Benz

The Mercedes-Benz Sprinter is a workhorse with loads going for it, says motoring editor Andy Russell.

The Sprinter, now in its third generation, is a real workhorse of the Mercedes-Benz van range.

It lives up to its reputation and its name – this is a van that will cover hundreds of thousands of miles doing deliveries, courier work... you name it, the Sprinter can do it.

When your van is off the road that is money lost and inconvenient to your business so the Sprinter comes with a comprehensive aftersales package as standard including:

Three-year, unlimited mileage warranty.

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24-hour roadside assistance.

MobiloVan enhanced support services for the lifetime of the van while dealer serviced.

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And so your van is available when you most need it, Orwell Truck & Van offers exclusive overnight servicing so it can be maintained while you sleep – that's on top of long maintenance intervals of as much as 37,000 miles.

The Sprinter panel van is available with short, medium or long-wheelbase and low and high-roof versions so there is a model to meet your business needs, making the versatile Sprinter a popular choice.

Wide-opening rear doors, which fold back completely flat along the sides of the van and out of the way, make loading and unloading easy, while the nearside sliding door is big enough to take a full-size pallet on a forklift truck. The sides of the load bay can be clad in a protective ply-lining as a factory-fitted option.

There's a strong range of turbo diesel engines with the popular 129hp 2.1-litre, four-cylinder unit in the 313 CDI pulling strongly across the rev range but returning up to 40mpg on the combined cycle.

The four-cylinder engine is also offered in 95hp and 163hp guises and there's a 190hp 3.0-litre V6 diesel.

When you spend many hours a day at the wheel, it is important to have a van that is easy to drive and live with. Given the size of the Sprinter, it is surprisingly car-like and agile to drive – confident through corners and comfortable when cruising, helped by supportive seats and a host of creature comforts on the equipment front. For a van it's a pleasure to drive.

The Sprinter shows off the best of the Mercedes-Benz commerical range's safety technology – this is the first van to get Crosswind Assist which links sensors to the Electronic Stability Program and braking systems to counter any tendency to drift to the side. Add a host of safety features – including traction control, load-sensing stability control and anti-lock brakes – and you've got a package that's as big on safety as it is on carrying cargo.

The panel van is the big seller of the Sprinter range but it is also available as a five-seater crew van and a 17-seater Traveliner minibus as well as chassis and crew cab versions with different seating configurations up front and various options, such as a flatbed, on the rear of the chassis.

The Sprinter has huge potential and is a vast volume of van that really has loads going for it.

Drive the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter at Orwell Truck & Van in Norwich, Ipswich, Colchester and Newmarket. Find out more by visiting the website at www.orwellmercedes-benz.co.uk

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