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Mercedes-Benz B-Class (2012–)

Last updated 22 May 2018

Loads of cabin space front and rear. Lots of safety kit. Engines are all frugal and even the most powerful deliver low CO2 emissions. All electric B Class from Spring 2015.
Ride too firm in all conditions. Inconsistent steering response undermines driving pleasure. Dash-top information screen could be clearer. 7G-DCT transmission has as many problems as previous model's CVT.
Updated 22 May 2018

Complaint of 18,000 mile 2014 Mercedes B180d with DCT automatic transmission "sometimes hardlys moves from standstill and it is very sluggish, but sometimes pulls away okay; also the gear changes sometimes...

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Introduction

The Mercedes-Benz B-Class is a development of the ideas originally thought up for the first generation of A-Class. This is why the B-Class has tall sides and single box styling, whereas the A-Class has developed into a more traditional premium hatch.

Those tall sides give the B-Class ample interior space for five, making it a plausible alternative to many MPVs and crossover rivals. Add in the appeal of the Mercedes-Benz three-pointed star badge, a large boot and strong build quality and the B-Class begins to build a case for itself.

There’s a choice of two petrol versions, which both use the same 1.6-litre turbo petrol engines in two different outputs. You can also choose from a 1.5-litre diesel or two versions of the 2.1-litre diesel and the most powerful diesel is also available with 4Matic all-wheel drive.

While the variety of engines and premium appeal of the B-Class will attract some to its ranks, this Mercedes-Benz does not offer much in the way of driving thrills. The handling is at best average for the class and the firm ride is necessary to stop the tall-sided B-Class from lolling about too much in corners.

Where the B-Class does regain ground is the amount of safety equipment supplied as standard with the car. All B-Class models have seven airbags, a Collision Prevention Assist Plus system to avoid accidents happening in the first place, plus a driver drowsiness warning. Mercedes-Benz also includes automatic child seat recognition to deactivate the front passenger airbag when a child seat is fitted.

For some, the safety and practicality of the B-Class will be enough of a draw, even if Mercedes-Benz offers cars from within its own ranks that are more fun to drive. For others, the B-Class will be too expensive compared to rivals that make do without a Mercedes-Benz badge.

Mercedes Benz B220CDI 2015 Road Test

Owners' reviews

5
Best car for a family
1
serious intermittent electrical fault
3
Mercedes badge but Renault interior quality and Renault engine
5
Very well made, roomy and so economical.
5
Comfortable quality with enough grunt and performance and quiet
5
Outstanding chassis, style and comfort; a pleasure to drive, roomy and well thought through.
DonA
 

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