What to hide: we expected from this chic minivan comfort, comparable to the S-class sedan. After all, both the price and the prefix in the title oblige.
In this class of cars, we do not have much choice in our country. Too few favorites. Similar living rooms on wheels – luxury minivans, capable of providing passengers with a space and comfort at the level of representative limousines. To play the role of both a prestigious office on wheels, and a car for trips to nature or travel by a large company. And here comes a special Mercedes. The cost of the new version of Exclusive (just over six million rubles in the test car) implies: this minibus is just from this category. So you can count on perfection in everything.
The main difference between an exclusive V-Class and an ordinary one is a solid interior: six chairs made of Nappa leather. Each with heating and ventilation. Plus a panoramic roof, which increases the feeling of free space in the “lounge”, as well as the acoustic system Burmester with 15 speakers. Not so little, given the good “packaging” even the base minivan, flaunting the luxurious front panel in the style of the S-Class. But we are more interested in the little things and nuances that you pay attention to, checking the car not on refined autobahns of Germany, but outside the Moscow Ring Road.
Loader in a chic suit
Present at the wheel in an exclusive van can anyone: a hired driver, and quite a non-poor owner, especially when he is a lover of distant travel. And if the former habitually does not notice the shortcomings, then the second has the right to ask: whether it was worth overpaying? Yes, the front panel of the V-Class is chic. With the usual menu for cars and a multimedia monitor. Enjoyable and convenient. But the steering wheel without heating! Lost or saved? In Russia, the issue is not at all secondary. And completely destroy the harmony protruding from under the bottom seat cushions metal ledges with wire skeins. A similar atavism, hinting at a fully working pedigree of the machine, surprised even in the ordinary V-Class. And in the version of Exclusive and does shock. Let’s try to close on the annoying miscalculation of marketers and engineers of the eye? And forget …
Maybe “Exclusive” is great on the go? On decent Moscow roads it is really hard to find fault. Normal smoothness of the stroke, and in the cabin, silence, although hardly in a whisper to talk. So for the role of company-car, plying within the metropolitan rings, this minibus is probably quite good.
As you know, the V-Class was built on a modernized platform from the utilitarian Viano. And in the version of Exclusive, and reconfigured the suspension, making it a little more athletic. Have such changes been beneficial? Looks like no. It broke out beyond the limits of the capital, as the suspension had already ceased to cope even with minor defects of asphalt – unpleasant blows were constantly felt in the cabin. Well, if the driver could not get around a large hole, the shock absorbers simply break through.
Work or relax?
The discomfort increased noise in the area of wheel arches and doors. A completely different level of soundproofing is expected in the version with the prefix Exclusive. Talking in a low voice at high speed will not work. It seems that the broken roads to such a car are simply contraindicated. But what about travel? It turns out, it does not make any sense in this case to choose an expensive modification, and it’s easier and more practical to purchase a version simpler. All the same, the level of comfort will be approximately comparable. Or are we too strict judges?
“The Captain’s Bridge” driver in the “Exclusive” and want to change the passenger seat from behind. Suddenly there will be a little more positive impressions? Looks salon solidly and soundly. Two side doors are automatically shifted, and the ceiling is high: you can enter and leave, almost without bending. As it should be to aristocrats, in full growth.
However, an attempt to sit comfortably on one of the second-row seats does not all succeed. Perhaps a passenger of small stature and can not find fault. And if he is slightly above average, then, probably, he will try to find the adjustment of the length of the bottom cushion. And, after all, not finding such a “small thing”, will think: is there any sense in expensive leather, in all this luxurious design, if you still sit in the pose of the clerk, who is not supposed to fully relax for a minute.
So, does the trip still work? Only how? For passengers there are no pull-out tables – there is nowhere to attach a laptop. If only on your knees. But there are cupholders. And if the passengers of the third row are just a stone’s throw away from them, then from the second row you have to reach … No, you still have to get up – in fact the seats for the glasses are located in the box behind the front seats. Maybe the engineers cared so much about the health of the passengers: even if you do not want to, you will eventually make a “charge”?
A little strange comes out “exclusive” in the performance of Mercedes-Benz. After a trip in this vein, both behind the wheel and in the salon there was a certain taste of luxury. As without him, right? But the aftertaste of special comfort and harmony seems to be gone. The obvious dissonance. Conclusion suggests an unambiguous: if you still vote for V-Class, then the usual version is preferable. Of course, only if you are used to counting money.
Photo of the author and Mercedes-Benz