The Mercedes-Benz Vito 2019 is the mid-size van from Merc, sitting in between the smaller Citan and larger Sprinter vans. From this year, there are three new trim levels (Pure, Progressive and Premium) as well as an ‘uplift’ in the level of standard equipment – read on to see how it performs.
Mercedes-Benz first launched the Vito in 1995 as a replacement for the outgoing and very successful ‘Bremen’ van, named after the town in which it was manufactured. Following this tradition Mercedes decided to call its next generation mid-sized van after the newly built ‘Vitoria’ factory in Spain.
The second generation was launched in 2003 and followed by the third-generation van in 2014 and during those last five years around 450,000 units have been sold.
Cab and interior
Vito is the oldest in the group, and this is immediately obvious upon climbing into the cab; the dashboard and instrument panel is dated, the display isn’t touchscreen like the other two and is much smaller, and it lack a carpeted covering on the bulkhead. The seating position is also considerably lower, which means the visibility isn’t quite as good.
Mercedes-Benz Vito 2019 specification
As mentioned in the introduction there are now three trim levels on the new Vito line-up and they offer the following standard equipment:
Aimed predominantly at fleets, the Pure level covers the basics with Active Parking Assist, parking sensors, heated and electrically adjustable exterior mirrors and heat-insulating glass, and infotainment is provided by the basic Audio 10 system.
Progressive models get more curb appeal with front fog lamps, metallic paint, colour-coded front and rear bumpers, full wheel trims, electrically-folding exterior mirrors on the outside, while the interior is furnished with Audio 15 infotainment system, cruise control, and driver’s seat lumbar support, and is available for all engines (except the top-spec 119 CDI).
The new flagship Premium level will turn even more heads with 17-inch alloy wheels and a chrome radiator grille and offer more in terms of creature comforts with air conditioning, reversing camera, anti-theft protection package and double lock, velour floor mats, and pre-installation for Becker Map Pilot navigation.
Mercedes-Benz Vito 2019 engine and driveline
There will be no fewer than 5 engine options on the 2019 Mercedes-Benz Vito; a 1.6-litre diesel available in power ratings of 94hp/240Nm and 114hp/300Nm which has been developed by alliance partners Renault or Merc’s own veteran 2.1-litre diesel in 136hp/330Nm, 177hp/400Nm, 190hp/400Nm. There is a choice between 5- or 6-speed manual, or a 7-speed automatic, depending on the engine choice.
On the road
We found that the front wheel-drive, 1.6-litre Vitos can be slightly anaemic and more rugged than the larger-engined, rear wheel-drive versions, although it suffice for most operators’ needs. The 2.1-litre engines are surprisingly more refined and quieter but provide much more grunt when the going gets tough.
The Vito is at the top of the class in terms of driving characteristics thanks to its low centre of gravity, which minimises body roll and allows for more direct steering, but its let down by the poor NVH (noise, vibration and harshness) as the shock absorbers do little to cushion bumps and potholes while there is a noticeable amount of niggly squeaks and rattles above 40mph.
Mercedes-Benz Vito dimensions and weights
The 2019 Mercedes-Benz Vito is available in two wheelbases; offering three load lengths of 2,568mm, 2,831mm and 3,061mm respectively. Given the standard load height of 1,391mm and width of 1,685mm (1,270mm between the wheelarches), this equates to load volumes of 5.5, 6.0 and 6.6 cubic metres. Gross vehicle weights (GVWs) vary between 2.8 and 3.05 tonnes with payloads ranging from 677 to 1,167kg.
Twin side loading doors and cargo floor lining are both standard, which is unique in this segment, and the Vito has a low loading height of just 556mm.
Mercedes-Benz Vito 2019 price and warranty
While we admired the looks, handling, fuel economy and pricing of the Mercedes-Benz Vito, it’s starting to show its age in the cab and the fit and finish isn’t the best. There are also lots of niggly squeaks and rattles emanating from the bulkhead.
The Vito pricing starts at £20,630 for the ‘Pure’ entry model trim and goes right the way up to the ‘Premium’ trim level at £32,210. The warranty is a very comforting 3-years combined with unlimited mileage.
Mercedes-Benz Vito 2019 technical information
Engine: 1.6 (1,598cc) diesel, 2.1 (2,143cc) diesel
Performance: 94hp/240Nm, 114hp/300Nm, 136hp/330Nm, 177hp/400Nm, 190hp/400Nm.
Fuel economy: 42.8 – 46.8mpg
Load lengths: 2,568mm / 2,831mm / 3,061mm
Load height: 1,391mm
Load width: 1,685mm
Between the wheelarches: 1,270mm
GVWs: 2,800kg – 3,050kg
Payload range: 677kg – 2,167kg
Load volume range (m³): 5.5 – 6.6
Warranty: 3-years, unlimited mileage
Starting price: £20,630 plus VAT (approx.)
Also read: Vito v Transporter v Custom