According to Mercedes, which previewed the Metris at last year’s SEMA show with some wild custom jobs, part of the Vito’s naturalization process (besides the name change) involved developing a powertrain specifically for the needs of North America. While the maker is a little light on the details, we do know that the engine is a gasoline-fueled 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that produces 208 horsepower and 258 lb-ft of twist. A seven-speed automatic transmission shuffles the power to the rear wheels, and Mercedes is claiming service intervals of up to 15, 000 miles, which will warm the hearts of fleet managers everywhere. Engine stop-start is optional, but fuel-economy numbers will be released at a later date.
On the safety front, the Metris offers enough assist-themed features to be voted an NBA All-Star. Leading the way as standard equipment are Crosswind Assist, Attention Assist, and load-adaptive stability control. Optional aides include Active Parking Assist, Lane Keeping Assist, Collision Prevention Assist, and Blind Spot Assist, plus parking sensors and a rearview camera. Six airbags in the cargo version and eight in the passenger variant add another layer of safety (the latter model seats seven or, optionally, eight). Arguably the most important feature is the addition of large cup holders to meet the refreshment needs of thirsty American workers.