The new generation of the R-Class now features an enhanced self-assured appearance, highlighting the unique personality of this versatile vehicle. The overall impression in particular has benefitted significantly from the completely redesigned front section, which borrows elements both from Mercedes-Benz saloons and SUV models. In addition to the fresh exte-rior, the "twenty-ten" model year R-Class also impresses with a number of distinctive interior features. These include the economy of space found in the latest MPV's, as well as the comfort, high-class appeal and prestige associated with classic Mercedes-Benz saloons. At the same time, the latest generation offers the same level of interior diversity for which its predecessor was renowned, and also boasts the robustness and all-wheel-drive properties of Mercedes-Benz SUV's. The R-Class will be celebrating its world premiere on 31 March 2010 at the New York In-ternational Auto Show (NYIAS).
In addition to the modern petrol variants adopted from the preceding model, with their customary effortless power delivery and high drive comfort, a range of optimised diesel engines is now also available to enhance the appeal of the R-Class. With a fuel consumption figure of 7.6 l/100 km*, compared with its predecessor the R 300 CDI BlueEFFICIENCY model requires around 7 per-cent less fuel while offering the same power output and enhanced perform-ance. The new R 350 CDI 4MATIC combines the high performance of a V8 model with the low fuel consumption of an economical V6 variant. It consumes 8.5 litres* of diesel per one hundred kilometres, thereby undercutting its predecessor by 0.8 litres – yet is able to offer significantly enhanced per-formance. While previously the maximum performance topped out at 165 kW (224 hp), the V6 diesel engine now boasts 195 kW (265 hp) as well as massive torque of 620 Newton metres. Making its debut in the R-Class, this powerful package enables the sportiest of all of the R-Class models with diesel engine to achieve effortlessly superior levels of performance. Acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h takes 7.6 seconds, while the top speed is 235 km/h.
With the R 350 BlueTEC 4MATIC, Mercedes-Benz is offering one of the cleanest diesel models in the world. The V6 engine achieves an output of 155 kW (211 hp) and substantial torque of 540 Nm. Compared with its predeces-sor, this model also manages to achieve reduced fuel consumption and lower emissions while providing enhanced performance. Equipped with highly-effective AdBlue© emission control, the compression-ignition engine consumes an average of 0.3 of a litre less, at 8.4 litres* of diesel per one hundred kilometres, generating in the process the same level of emissions as a com-parable petrol engine. As a result, this model currently already meets the emission values planned for 2014 according to the EU6 standard. All other petrol and diesel versions of the R-Class meet the EU5 standard.
The latest generation of the R-Class features a new, self-assured appearance. The overall impression is virtually seamless and encapsulates the unique personality of this highly versatile vehicle. The focus of the designers was the completely revised front section which, by emphasizing the width and making use of a horizontally structured bonnet, affords the entire vehicle a look which is as harmonious as it is powerfully dynamic. In addition to the bonnet, the vehicle's wings, radiator grille and surround, headlamps and bumpers with chrome underguard have all been completely redesigned. As an optional extra, a chrome insert with integrated LED daytime driving lights in conjunction with bi-xenon headlamps is available to enhance the look of the R-Class even further.
The side view features coupé-like lines - a pleasant contrast to regular large-capacity vehicles - and is characterised by the modified exterior mirror hous-ings and the wheel design. Wheels are available in 5-spoke, 5-twin spoke or 10-spoke designs, and in sizes ranging from 43.2 to 53.3 centimetres (17 to 21 inches). The design idiom of the front is continued consistently through the rear area which, with its new bumper covering, modified tail lamps and integrated tailpipe trim, has also been given an accentuated wide look. The 2010 model year R-Class looks particularly refined in the new "diamond white" paint finish.
If there was a versatility test for car interiors, the R-Class would certainly be the favourite to take first place. A wide variety of options are available when it comes to seat variations in particular: designed for a relaxed, safe driving en-vironment, the saloon offers five seats as standard in both the normal and long wheelbase versions, but four, six or even seven seat configurations are also possible. The R-Class comes with partially power-adjustable seats for driver and front passenger as standard, while as an option front passengers can also enjoy the luxury of actively ventilated and heated multicontour seats with full power adjustment and memory function.
The R-Class also reveals another benefit in the form of its large, versatile lug-gage compartment: in the standard-wheelbase versions the luggage com-partment holds up to 1950 litres, while the long-wheelbase version boasts 2385 litres. In all five-seat variants there is a separate stowage compartment beneath the load compartment floor, while the optional EASY PACK tailgate which can operated remotely by means of a switch or key also makes access to the luggage compartment easier. As such the R-Class is the most variable and spacious vehicle in the entire Mercedes-Benz passenger car product range.
The bright, classic interior - which seems even more spacious when fitted with the optional panoramic glass sunroof - makes use of new materials and colour combinations which enhance the high-class appeal and quality of this unique long-distance saloon. At the same time they underline the sense of wellbeing which is typical of the Mercedes-Benz interior. Available interior appointments include the upholstery combination of "Aspen" fabric and breathable, soft-touch ARTICO man-made leather.
Two-tone interior appointments are a new addition to the range: this is where the base colour almond beige can be combined with the contrasting colour mocha brown. Alternatively, the base colour alpaca grey combined with con-trasting dark basalt grey is also available. Both colour combinations are used on the dashboard, steering wheel, centre console, seats, door linings and floor coverings. When choosing ARTICO or leather appointments at the same time, the piping is fin-ished in a contrasting colour. Single-tone nappa leather appointments are also available as standard in conjunction with the AMG Interior Sports package. In addition to aluminium trim with a dark longitudinal-grain and chrome trim in silver shadow, luxurious wood trim in high-gloss brown eucalyptus, high-gloss brown burred walnut or high-gloss anthracite poplar can also be ordered.
The nine basic variants already provide an opportunity to tailor the R-Class according to personal vehicle preferences in each case. All models boast nu-merous features as standard which help to make travelling both on long jour-neys as well as on short urban trips even safer and more relaxed. These fea-tures include the unique anticipatory occupant protection system PRE-SAFE®, a complete restraint system with eight airbags, crash-active NECK-PRO head restraints, a tyre pressure loss warning system and adaptive brake lights. Safety is also enhanced thanks to high-performance telematics systems such as the Audio 20, Audio 50 APS or COMAND APS with an extremely user-friendly interface.
The THERMATIC automatic climate control system is fitted with a combination filter to hep further reduce pollutants which may be contained in the outside air entering the vehicle. As an optional extra, a THERMOTRONIC system provid-ing separate rear air conditioning is available to meet all interior air conditioning requirements. The spacious glove compartment now comes with an AUX-IN connection for external audio or entertainment devices. Connection options can also be extended further with an optional Media Interface (UCI).
To complement the extensive standard equipment, the R-Class provides a va-riety of assistant systems which push ride comfort and safety to the highest level and contribute to the vehicle's leading position in this market segment. These include DISTRONIC proximity control, AIRMATIC air suspension with the Adaptive Damping System (ADS), or Blind Spot Assist, which can make changing lanes significantly safer. The modern LINGUATRONIC voice control system makes using the telematics systems even easier and more convenient, while a re-versing camera provides for smooth, easy parking or manoeuvering in blind spots. As soon as the driver engages "R" gear, the image from the camera is shown on the high-resolution COMAND APS display. Rear passengers, meanwhile, can enjoy their own entertainment programme thanks to the Rear Seat Entertainment System. Seat heating can also be ordered for the second row of seats to increase comfort even further in winter.
Experience shows that Mercedes-Benz models belong to the most stable ve-hicles on the market in terms of values and they therefore offer a significant fi-nancial advantage. This was confirmed once again last year by a neutral third-party when specialist magazine "Auto Bild" selected the "2010 Value Champi-ons" in different vehicle categories based on surveys conducted by Saar-brücken-based market research institute Bähr & Fess Forecast. The "Value Champion" among MPV's, the R 300 CDI, emerged ahead of the field in this market segment and according to the forecasts would retain a value of 47.5 percent after four years. The R-Class already held this leading position in the expert analysis of residual values last year.