The Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 2500 Cargo played a key role in revolutionizing the notion of the commercial van throughout North America. Here’s everything you need to know about it.
It is often said that, while Mercedes-Benz did not invent the commercial van as we know it today, it certainly played a crucial role in terms of revolutionizing it throughout North America. The Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 2500 Cargo was originally sold as a captive import by Freightliner and Dodge before it became rightfully adorned by the Benz’ three-pointed star. It was actually the first commercial van to be sold in Canada that had the famous European styling. Competitors have since followed in Mercedes’ footsteps by bringing over a number of challengers. Here’s what you need to know about the legendary Sprinter.
What’s in a Name?
While it might sound confusing at first, there are actually a number of models and separate trim levels in which the Sprinter is available. Configurations include 2500 and 3500 forms, both available with 144- and 170-inch wheelbases. Then you have the different body styles, which include Cargo Van, Crew Van (essentially a Cargo Van with panel rear windows and second-row seats), Passenger Van, and lastly, Chassis Cab. But, it doesn’t end there: the Cargo, Crew and Passenger vans can all be additionally modified and configured in order to have different roof heights depending on needs. These options for heights are Standard, High and Super High. As a result, you’re able to configure your Sprinter to suit a very specific and intended purpose.
Two Engine Choices for Your Hauling Needs
There are two diesel engines that can be had under the hood of the Sprinter. The base version found both on the 2500 and the 3500 is a 2.1-litre four-cylinder engine that generates 161 horsepower and 265 lb.-ft. of torque. It is mated to a seven-speed automatic transmission, which combines to create a powertrain configuration Mercedes claims to boast class-leading efficiency. There’s also a more powerful, 3.0-litre V6 turbodiesel engine that generates 188 horsepower and 325 lb.-ft. of torque. Joined with a five-speed automatic transmission, this powertrain combination is better suited for those who have the need to frequently haul heavy loads.
A Contrasting Notion
Sprinter Vans are actually celebrated mostly for their sprightly performance and nimble handling – for a commercial vehicle, that is. They are essentially designed as industrial-grade workhorses; but interestingly, you’re also able to get a 4x4 model of the Cargo Van and Passenger Van. Such a combination will also feature a High Roof configuration and 144-inch wheelbase, as well as the V6 engine. Standard with this particular setup are also all-terrain tires, elevated ride height and low-range transfer case, making the Sprinter the only commercial van to actually offer factory-fitted four-wheel drive. But, it’s not all ruggedness and function. Additional trim features include everything from a collision prevention system, lane-keeping assist, blind spot monitoring and bi-xenon headlamps to automatic high beams, automatic headlights and wipers, feature heated seats and many more options sure to make your ride safe and comfortable.
Excellent Value for Money
The Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 2500 Cargo is an unusual van, to say the least. Its design suggests it was built for hauling weight and getting the job done no matter the obstacle. Yet, it still manages to slip in a nice amount of refinement typically synonymous with much pricier and luxurious Mercedes. While it is difficult to place it into any specific group, one thing is certain: it is an exceptional piece of German engineering and everything you’d expect from a Mercedes-Benz. Definitely consider investing in this van if you’re on the market for refined reliability in all conditions.