Earlier this year it was revealed that Mercedes-Benz was halting production of the current A-Class and B-Class after the current cycle and replacing the two aging models with
a new family of small vehicles
ranging from cabrios to sports coupes. We reported that this replacement would entail a whole new family of models consisting of four distinct variations, including a cabriolet, a coupe, a people mover and a soft-roader. Now Mercedes-Benz has confirmed that at least three of these variations will be made for the replacement B-Class, including a hatchback, a mini-MPV
and a soft roader.
The soft roader will be known as the BLK, and CAR is reporting that it will be available in two trim levels - 'Street', for the majority of purchasers who don't actually require any SUV-capabilities, and 'Nature', which will be for those who intend to take the BLK into a more rough and tumble sort of environment. There has also been speculation that despite its off roader marketing, only the top of the range BLK models will actually have a 4WD system, while the base spec models would stick to front wheel drive. This will keep weight and costs down, and improve mileage figures for the end consumer. Weight for the range topping model will be approaching 3,500lb (1600kg), while the entry level model should be closer to 2,970lb (1350kg).
Currently, Mercedes has outlined a number of powerplants for the BLK, with many of them lifted straight out of the C-Class. There are expected to be three petrol versions and three diesel versions, and while the petrol and diesel models will share similar horsepower outputs, it is the diesel models that will return superior torque and mileage.
For example, the petrol BLK 180, with its 1.8L engine, will have 136hp (101kW) and 140lb-ft (190Nm) of torque, while the diesel BLK 180 CDI will also have 136hp but almost 30% more torque at 200lb-ft (271Nm). Similar results are found when comparing the other petrol engines in the range to the diesels:
- the 2.0L petrol BLK 200 has 177hp (132kW) and 214lb-ft (290Nm) of torque, while the 2.0L diesel BLK 200 CDI has 170hp (127kW) and 295 lb-ft (400Nm).
- the 2.2L petrol BLK 220 has 224hp (167kW) and 258lb ft of torque (349Nm), and the diesel BLK 220 CDI has 204hp (152) and 355lb-ft (480Nm).
Preview: 2012 Mercedes-Benz B-Class variants
2011 Mercedes B-Class