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by David Zalstein

The interior of the all-new Mercedes-Benz V-Class has been revealed ahead of its anticipated 2014 debut.

The planned successor to the Viano van, Mercedes-Benz says the new V-Class will be its largest passenger car and the ideal vehicle for large families, those who take part in active recreational activities and for shuttle service operators.

Said to combine “outstanding spaciousness and exceptional functionality” with quality, comfort and aesthetic appeal typical of the German car maker, the V-Class interior clearly takes inspiration from the new C-Class, E-Class and S-Class.

The new Mercedes-Benz V-Class – Interior, Cockpit, TecDays 201

Adopting passenger car design elements, the V-Class features a swooping leather-topped dash and leather seats, armrests and door trims all contrasted with white stitching. A leather 12-button multi-function steering wheel has also been added along with ambient lighting available in three colours.

A free-standing central display screen sits atop the dash, above circular silver-rimmed air vents and the rotary push-button controller and touchpad for the infotainment unit.

Employing a gesture, letter or number recognition system similar to that of smartphones, the touchpad is used to control stereo functions including those for the top-spec COMAND Online multimedia system. Comprising navigation, DVD player and internet access functionality, the system can be teamed with an optional 640-watt 16-speaker Burmester Surround Sound audio package.

The new Mercedes-Benz V-Class – Interior, Cockpit, Controller,

As seen in the recently revealed C-Class interior, an uprated climate control system now features a GPS-linked tunnel-detecting automatic air recirculation function that ensures a fume-free cabin. Mercedes says cooling air intensity for drivers and front passengers is now also automatically adjusted according to the position of the sun.

In a claimed segment first, the V-Class has been equipped with a separately opening rear window attached to its upper tailgate frame. Allowing for easy loading and unloading, the new rear window can be opened and closed independently of the tailgate.

Again borrowed from its passenger car siblings is a comprehensive list of safety technologies. Coming under the umbrella title of ‘Intelligent Drive’ and relying on radar, camera and ultrasonic sensor development, they include Attention Assist, Crosswind Assist, Blind Spot Assist, Collision Prevention Assist and Traffic Sign Assist. Active Parking Assist is also included and allows the V-Class to automatically park itself in parallel and perpendicular spaces.

The new Mercedes-Benz V-Class – purportedly seen in design sketches in August – is tipped to debut at next year’s Geneva motor show.

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