German luxury auto giant Mercedes-Benz is known for its aggressive launch strategy in India in order to ensure its leading position in the luxury car market of the country. Mercedes will be continuing with its back to back launch strategy in India in the New Year as well. Mercedes-Benz India is expected to set off its new model launch deluge in 2019 with the launch of the V-Class in January. The Mercedes-Benz V-Class luxury MPV will be another attempt of the company in the top-notch MPV market of India after the MB100, MB140 and R-Class, all of which were pulled out of the market owing to poor sales.
Mercedes-Benz India is now set to try its hands on this niche segment again with the V-Class. The V-Class made its global debut back in 2014, ever since which Mercedes started studying the Indian market to launch the V-Class. Although the previous luxury people movers did not click in India, the German auto giant thinks that India is now matured enough for such model owing to the economical growth, particularly in the service and hospitality industries, from where most of the demands for the V-Class would come. Mercedes India is also targeting those luxury car buyers who don’t have any other option of premium MPVs above the Toyota Innova Crysta.
The Mercedes V-Class will be initially imported to India from Spain, where the model is produced in limited numbers. Mercedes-Benz will think about local assembly in India only after checking its sales rates and demands. Given the Spanish production cost is lower as compared against German production costs, the V-Class is expected to come to India at a comparably lower pricing, which will offset some of the exorbitant customs duties which are levied on imported CBU car models.
The latest iteration of the Mercedes V-Class has evolved in terms of styling over the years to adopt the new design philosophy of its maker. The luxury MPV’s cabin has been updated to offer better luxury, comfort and tech including the new Mercedes Comand infotainment system, while it shares some features with the new C-Class and S-Class sedan models. The up-market look and feel of the interior is enhanced with the use of wood and Napa leather trims.
The V-Class comes with a massive 5,170 mm length in its standard version, while an extended length option that stretches the MPV to 5,370 mm. The India-spec V-Class is expected to come in two seating configurations - 7-seater version aimed at the high-end travel sector and a 6-seater version aimed at personal buyers. The 6-seater variant will come with high customization levels with too many luxurious features options which can offer experience of a proper lounge-like ambience to an on-the-go conference room, to a luxury sleeper as per the customer’s requirements. Although it remains to be seen what all is offered on the India-spec model.
The V-Class will also be high on advance safety techs and will offer Crosswind Assist and fatigue detection systems among tons of others.
The India-spec Mercedes-Benz V-Class will come powered by a single diesel motor option, which is the OM654 powering the refreshedC-class and theE-class All-Terrain models in India. This BS-VI compliant 2.0 litre 4-cylinder oil burner offers 194 hp and 400 Nm.
The Mercedes-Benz V-Class is expected to be priced in India in the range of Rs. 75 to Rs. 80 lakhs (ex-showroom).