A news story that may have passed under the radar this year saw Mercedes-Benz once again winning Vincentric Best Fleet Value in Canada awards for its lineup of Metris and Sprinter commercial vans. You’ve…

Four Mercedes-Benz Vans earn Vincentric Best Fleet Value in Canada awards

2017 Mercedes-Benz Metris and Sprinter Cargo Vans
Both the mid-size Metris and full-size Sprinter won their classes in Vincentric’s Best Fleet Value in Canada awards. (Photo: Mercedes-Benz Vans)

A news story that may have passed under the radar this year saw Mercedes-Benz once again winning Vincentric Best Fleet Value in Canada awards for its lineup of Metris and Sprinter commercial vans. You’ve seen them everywhere, although one could be forgiven for not paying attention to yet another big white delivery van or silver airport shuttle with blacked out windows.

The Vincentric award tallies up a commercial vehicle’s overall lifecycle cost in order to determine its value, and the Sprinter has earned top marks in the full-Size three-quarter-ton Cargo and Passenger Van categories for six consecutive years, while the Mercedes-Benz Metris Cargo and Passenger Vans have won their respective classes for two years running.

2017 Mercedes-Benz Sprinter Passenger Van
The Mercedes-Benz Sprinter Passenger Van makes an ideal sightseeing vehicle. (Photo: Mercedes-Benz Vans)

Specifically, the list of Mercedes-Benz winners include the Metris Cargo Van in Vincentric’s “Mid-Size Commercial Cargo Van” category, the Metris Passenger Van in the third-party analytical firm’s “Mid-Size Commercial Passenger Van” category, the Sprinter Cargo Van 2500 V6 Standard Roof 144-inch WB in the “Full-Size ¾-Ton Cargo Van” category, and the Sprinter Passenger Van 2500 V6 Standard Roof 144-inch WB in the “Full-Size ¾-Ton Passenger Van” category.

2017 Mercedes-Benz Metris Passenger Van
The Metris Passenger Van also won its category. (Photo: Mercedes-Benz Vans)

“We focus on providing the best possible fleet solutions for the Canadian commercial market, and we know that low total cost of ownership is a key differentiator for our vehicles,” said Nicolette Lambrechts, Vice President, Mercedes-Benz Vans. “That the Metris has achieved this level of recognition in both of its first two years on the market demonstrates that we are achieving our goal and fulfilling our promise to customers.”

2017 Mercedes-Benz Metris Cargo Van
The Metris is low enough to fit into regular parking garages, making it extremely versatile. (Photo: Mercedes-Benz Vans)

The Metris fills a unique niche in the commercial market by providing a lot of capacity from a mid-size model, yet making it small enough to fit under the low roofs of many parking garages. Its relatively lightweight design and turbocharged four-cylinder gasoline engine make it fuel-efficient too, while its rear-wheel drive layout makes for lower repair costs and allows it to haul more weight than front-wheel drive competitors.

2017 Mercedes-Benz Sprinter Van
You don’t just have to get white, as Mercedes-Benz Vans offer a large palette of optional colours. (Photo: Mercedes-Benz Vans)

“With consecutive wins for the past six years, the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter has built on a long-established reputation for delivering exceptional value,” added Lambrechts. “These most recent awards further underscore its worth and utility for Canadian fleets from coast to coast.”

Based on typical use patterns, Vincentric analyzes cost of ownership of more than 2,000 commercial vehicle configurations monthly. The studies are comprehensive too, factoring in “all major ownership and operating costs for each vehicle, including depreciation, fees and taxes, financing, fuel, insurance, maintenance, repairs, and even opportunity cost, or the loss of potential interest income as a result of owning and operating a vehicle,” said Mercedes-Benz Vans in a press release. What’s more, evaluations are done in all 10 Canadian provinces by using 24 different lifecycle cost scenarios. Vincentric bases each winner on lowest fleet lifecycle costs in the most scenarios.

2017 Mercedes-Benz Sprinter Cargo Van 4x4
Mercedes is the only van maker to offer 4WD in a van as large as the Sprinter. (Photo: Mercedes-Benz Vans)

“Mercedes-Benz Vans have consistently displayed great value to Canadian fleet buyers in the Mid-Size and ¾-Ton van segments,” says Vincentric President, David Wurster. “All four of the award-winning Mercedes-Benz vehicles combined low depreciation costs with strong fuel economy to earn their awards.”

The Metris is a one-size-fits-all affair, but the Sprinter can be had in many lengths and roof heights, plus it’s one of the only full-size vans available with a four-wheel drivetrain. This variety, along with its renowned quality, plus its turbo-diesel fuel-efficiency and overall dependability make it very popular amongst fleet buyers and independent business owners alike.

Did you attend last night’s Killers concert in Vancouver or the Jimmy Eat World show in Toronto? Planning on taking it to the limit one more time with The Eagles this spring or singing “Stay With…

Mercedes sponsorship deal with Live Nation making imprint on Canadian concertgoers

Mercedes-Benz and Live Nation Canada sponsorship deal
Mercedes-Benz and Live Nation Canada are celebrating a new arrangement that brings exclusive benefits to Mercedes, Smart and commercial Van customers. (Photo: Mercedes-Benz)

Did you attend last night’s Killers concert in Vancouver or the Jimmy Eat World show in Toronto? Planning on taking it to the limit one more time with The Eagles this spring or singing “Stay With Me” at the top of your lungs at the Sam Smith show in the fall? Chances are you won’t only be enjoying your favourite songs while taking in some great live shows, but you’ll see Mercedes’ three-pointed star branding on site as well.

Mercedes-Benz Canada inked a deal with Live Nation Canada earlier this year, which now gives the automaker excellent exposure at fun, uplifting events that are ideal for positive brand association.

Mercedes-Benz and Live Nation Canada sponsorship deal
Why not arrive to your next Live Nation event in style aboard this 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLA? (Photo: Mercedes-Benz)

Along with other key branding at venues, an animation of colourful dancing concertgoers will appear on digital screens at key points throughout the event (see video below), culminating with an emotive “Be Moved” message.

“This partnership with Live Nation is about celebrating our passion for performance,” said Virginie Aubert, Vice President of Marketing at Mercedes-Benz Canada. “Be Moved” plays on both the literal and figurative meaning of the word, making a bold statement about the Mercedes-Benz brand, while also extending an invitation for concert-goers to embrace, enjoy and be inspired by the live music experience.”

Mercedes-Benz and Live Nation Canada sponsorship deal
Black-Eyed Peas duo are looking cool in their ForTwo, Smart customers also benefiting from Live Nation deal. (Photo: Mercedes-Benz)

The Live Nation Canada deal allows Mercedes to connect with music fans of all ages, from teens, which will soon be learning to drive, potentially with the brand’s innovative Mercedes-Benz Driving Academy, attending Katy Perry’s upcoming concert tour, young adults at the same event that might choose to get there and go home using the automaker’s forward-thinking Car2go ride sharing program, to parents who may consider one of Mercedes-Benz’ wide array of cars and SUVs for their next new vehicle, while the slightly more mature Foo Fighters faithful may need something larger like Mercedes’ GLC, GLE or GLS sport utility for their growing families.

Mercedes-Benz and Live Nation Canada sponsorship deal
Are you and the girls heading to the upcoming Katy Perry concert? Make sure to get your reserved seats through Mercedes’ concierge service. (Photo: Mercedes-Benz)

The Live Nation Canada partnership extends for multiple years, “striking a chord with Canadians by celebrating the power of music and live performance,” said the automaker in a press release.

Along with sponsorship, Mercedes introduced an exclusive concierge service for its current customers (including Pre-Owned, Vans and Smart cars) dubbed Mercedes-Benz Star Access, which personally assists with ticket purchases between 11am and 7pm ET (8am and 4pm PT) by calling 844-389-STAR or emailing mbstaraccess@livenation.com.

Mercedes-Benz and Live Nation Canada sponsorship deal
Mercedes has long affiliated with live events, Phil Collins shown singing his heart out at a previous Smart-sponsored concert. (Photo: Mercedes-Benz)

What’s more, a separate program called Mercedes-Benz Star Access VIP is designed to “create unique experiences for their customers at Live Nation Canada events across the country.” The program reserves blocks of premium concert tickets for its customers, which will be especially helpful at events that only offer general admission tickets otherwise.

“We believe our customers deserve the best,” said Brian D. Fulton, President and CEO of Mercedes-Benz Canada. “It’s what they expect from our vehicles and it’s what we strive for in every customer interaction. Through this partnership, we can now facilitate access to the best live events in the country. Live music has the power to move people. We want to be a part of that fun and excitement.”

Mercedes-Benz and Live Nation Canada sponsorship deal
Make sure to contact Mercedes to find out if they have special reserved seats for the next concert you attend. (Photo: Mercedes-Benz)

“Live Nation and Mercedes-Benz are both brands that are passionate about performance,” added John May, President, Media and Corporate Partnerships, Live Nation Canada. “That passion has made us best-in-class in our respective fields and we’re thrilled to now be working together.”

If you’re already a Mercedes-Benz customer, you can sign up right now at: http://promo.livenation.com/email/setlist/?camefrom=CFC_MercedesBenzCA_website (note: don’t include a space with your postal code). Alternatively, we’re quite certain your local Mercedes-Benz retailer will be only too happy to tell you how you can gain privileged access to all the special perks just mentioned, which are only available to Mercedes-Benz and Smart owners.

Now, go ahead and check out the Mercedes-Benz and Live Nation Canada “Be Moved” video:

 

Mercedes’ B-Class isn’t the newest kid on the compact luxury block, but it’s still a worthy tall wagon that easily outperforms most of its rivals when wanting a practical yet premium experience.…

2018 Mercedes-Benz B 250 4Matic Sports Tourer Road Test

The B-Class moves into 2018 mostly unchanged, but this is hardly a bad thing considering its attractive tall wagon/MPV shape, superb interior, and finely balanced ride and handling.

Mostly unchanged? True, Mercedes has added plenty of new standard features to the base B 250 mix, this raising the entry price by $4,050 to a still very affordable $35,900, or $38,200 for the all-wheel drive 4Matic. And you get a lot for that money. Now standard is the previously optional Avantgarde Edition package, which adds high-performance auto on/off LED headlamps, blindspot assist, dual-zone automatic climate control, an 8.0-inch tablet-style infotainment display filled with a dynamic guideline-enhanced backup camera plus Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration, this package continuing with power-adjustable front seats with four-way powered lumbar support and a panoramic sunroof, turning what was a good little albeit more rudimentary luxury compact into something you can really Read Full Story
Those not personally invested in the first-generation GLA may not notice that this 2018 version has received a mid-cycle update, but put the new model beside its predecessor and the changes are obvious.…

2018 Mercedes-Benz GLA 250 4Matic Road Test

While luxury branded competitors scramble to fill niches within all the various SUV categories, Mercedes has long led the way.

The German automaker was one of the first with a serious 4x4-capable SUV, its legendary Gelandewagen, now G-Class, dating back to 1979, as well as one of the first with a luxury crossover SUV in the M-Class, more recently dubbed GLE-Class, a mid-size five-seater that harks back to 1997.

The three-pointed star brand has steadily grown its SUV lineup since then, adding the seven-occupant GL-Class in 2006, now named GLS, the GLK in 2008, now replaced by the entirely new GLC, and more recently this GLA-Class in 2014. The following year Mercedes expanded its GLE-Class lineup by adding a sportier Coupe variant, which was followed up last year by the GLC-Class Coupe.

The last two models have more in common with the GLA than any of the others on that long list. No doubt the success of Mercedes' entry-level SUV, along with the mid-size BMW X6 Read Full Story
Anyone not cognizant of a steady increase in luxury SUV sales has been focused on other things than the automotive market, but they’ll likely become amply aware when it comes time to trade in their…

New AMG GLC 63 S 4Matic+ to leave sport ute rivals far behind

2018 Mercedes-AMG GLC 63 S 4Matic+ SUV and Coupe
New 2018 Mercedes-AMG GLC 63 S 4Matic+ SUV and Coupe models to dominate compact SUV performance segment with 503-hp apiece. (Photo: Mercedes-Benz)
Anyone not cognizant of a steady increase in luxury SUV sales has been focused on other things than the automotive market, but they’ll likely become amply aware when it comes time to trade in their ride and they visit the showroom of their favourite premium brand. Along with the usual assortment of sport-luxury sedans, two- and four-door sport coupes, convertibles, and traditional sport wagons, they’ll be met by more new SUVs than they’ve ever seen, filling ever-increasing segments as well as micro niches never before imagined. The new GLC Coupe is just one of those unusually welcome alternatives within the burgeoning luxury SUV sector, helping to fill out a particularly focused market segment that was previously only occupied by BMW’s X4. The sporty Mercedes SUV arrived in similar fashion as the German brand’s GLE Coupe, which now handily goes up against BMW’s long-running X6 in the larger mid-size SUV category. The fastback Merc went on sale in 2014, a considerable eight years after the Bimmer, with Stuttgart appearing to have waited in order to judge market reaction to the Bavarian’s entry. Surprising many, Mercedes took no time bringing the smaller GLC Coupe to market the following year as a 2016 model.
2018 Mercedes-AMG GLC 63 S 4Matic+ SUV
The AMG GLC 63 S 4Matic+ SUV is the more practical of the two due to its traditional SUV design. (Photo: Mercedes-Benz)
Now that we’re about to enter model year 2018, things are heating up a lot more thanks to the expected arrival of Mercedes-AMG’s new GLC 63 S 4Matic+ Coupe. It’s a perfect example of how the top German brands lead all premium competitors by filling niches within niches. In this case BMW was first with its X4 M40i, but that sporty model in no way diminishes the impact of this exciting new three-pointed star entry, especially considering that along with the SUV coupe version comes a more practical AMG-tuned compact SUV. That would be Mercedes-AMG’s GLC 63 S 4Matic+ that first showed up alongside the SUV Coupe variant at the 2017 New York International Auto Show in early April, a model that only has Audi’s SQ5, Jaguar’s F-Pace S and Range Rover’s new Velar for competition, being that BMW has yet to modify its more traditional compact X3 SUV. Just the same, both AMG-tuned M-B SUVs deliver a level of potency that should cause their rivals to shy away from a direct fight on the track.
2018 Mercedes-AMG GLC 63 S 4Matic+ Coupe
The sweptback AMG GLC 63 S Coupe 4Matic+ gets a unique “Race” mode for track dominance. (Photo: Mercedes-Benz)
Where the X4 M40i and SQ5 put out a similar 355 and 354 horsepower respectively, plus 343 and 369 lb-ft of torque, and the slightly larger supercharged 3.0-litre V6 powered F-Pace and Velar improve on both with 380 horsepower apiece, albeit only 332 lb-ft of torque, Mercedes seems to have its targets set more directly on Porsche’s Macan Turbo that unleashes 400 horsepower and 406 lb-ft of torque in regular trim or 440 and 442 respectively with its Performance package. Still, as impressive as Porsche’s top compact SUV is, in all-conquering AMG style the two new GLC 63 S 4Matic+ models produce 503 scorching horsepower and 516 lb-ft of tire smoking torque. The dominant engine is nothing less than Mercedes-AMG’s handcrafted and individually signed twin-turbocharged 4.0-litre V8, a dry-sump version of which is shared with the mighty AMG GT sports car, whereas cog swapping duties come by the brand’s new in-house designed and built AMG SpeedShift MCT 9-speed automatic that debuted in the E 63 S 4Matic+, a lightweight paddle shifter-actuated transmission boasting a start-off wet clutch (that replaces the torque converter), ultra-short shift/response times, and double-declutching functionality.
2018 Mercedes-AMG GLC 63 S 4Matic+ SUV and Coupe
Both AMG GLC 63 S 4Matic+ SUV and Coupe models boast the same hand-built twin-turbo V8. (Photo: Mercedes-Benz)
Of course, such specifications result in a very quick tag team of sport utilities, with zero to 100 km/h sprints of 3.8 seconds each, aided by an electronic limited-slip rear differential and constantly variable front-to-rear torque distribution from the standard 4Matic+ all-wheel drivetrain that’s also tuned by AMG. Top speed is electronically limited to 250 km/h. Four wheel grip is further enhanced by a standard set of twinned five-spoke lightweight 20-inch alloys on 265/45 front and 295/40 rear performance tires (or optional 21-inch forged alloys with 265/40 front and 295/35 rear rubber) that also help it stop faster via special high-performance brakes featuring 390-millimetre drilled and internally-ventilated discs front and back, whereas an adjustable air suspension with adaptive adjustable damping optimizes cornering capability. What’s more, in order to give the GLC 63 S Coupe 4Matic+ an edge over its more pragmatic sibling, Mercedes has added a “Race” mode to its usual Comfort, Sport, Sport+ and Individual driver-selectable AMG Dynamic Select performance settings. These modify engine, transmission, suspension, steering, ESP, and all-wheel drive responsiveness depending on demands.
2018 Mercedes-AMG GLC 63 S 4Matic+ SUV and Coupe
Interior detailing includes high grade materials finished with unique AMG detailing in black and red. (Photo: Mercedes-Benz)
An easy way to tell these ultimate performance SUVs apart from their less formidable brethren are AMG Panamericana-style frontal grilles with unique vertical strakes, similar in design to those found on the much lauded Mercedes-AMG GT C Roadster and GT R sports coupe. The GLC 63 S 4Matic+ SUV and GLC 63 S 4Matic+ Coupe also benefit from unique front and rear bumper designs, while the wheel arches are widened to fit their meatier rims and rubber, plus the SUV body style gets its first rear rooftop spoiler. Inside, special sport seats are covered with Mercedes’ exclusive Artico leatherette bolsters and suede-like Dinamica microfibre inserts, these materials showing up elsewhere around the cabin as well. Additionally, a tasteful supply of aluminum trim joins a mostly black interior that gets spiced up with red accents, not to mention the expected AMG-embossed badges. Beautifully finished carbon-fibre trim is also available, inside and out.
2018 Mercedes-AMG GLC 63 S 4Matic+ SUV
The new Mercedes-AMG GLC 63 S 4Matic+ SUV and Coupe promise superb handling for both road and track. (Photo: Mercedes-Benz)
“For us, the new GLC 63 S 4MATIC+ is quite a special vehicle,” said Tobias Moers, CEO of Mercedes-AMG GmbH. “It is no easy job designing an SUV to be highly sporty and dynamic, while at the same time offering exceptional driving stability. This required us to put our heart and soul, along with our many years of SUV expertise, into the development of this vehicle. The result is an SUV that can be driven with high precision and agility and which, if required, is equally at home on a high-speed lap of the racetrack. With our V8 biturbo engine, we hold a decisive USP in the Performance market. What is more, with SUV and Coupe, we offer the widest choice in the segment. Also, the technical closeness to our sports cars is underscored visually by the Panamericana grille, which was previously reserved for our AMG GT models.” Of note, the Canadian market will not be getting the 469 horsepower non-“S” AMG GLC 63 variant of these two SUVs, models that are available in the U.S. as well as other markets. When the 2018 Mercedes-AMG 63 S 4Matic+ SUV and Coupe arrive in showrooms across Canada later this year, pricing will likely start in the high $80k to low $90k range.