The new Mercedes-Benz B-Class launched in Singapore on Friday, with prices starting from $178,888 with COE (as of May 17, 2019).
It’s much sleeker and sportier than the outgoing model, which looked a bit too much like a minivan.
The new B-Class, with tighter styling, makes it look more akin to the BMW 2 Series Gran Tourer.
Outside, the car’s roofline has gotten a haircut and has been lowered from the outgoing B-Class.
Combined with the long wheelbase and short overhangs, it makes for a much sportier look than its predecessor.
Powering the B-Class (in B200 trim) is a turbocharged 1.33-litre, 4-cylinder engine making 163hp and 250Nm of torque.
That gets mated to a seven-speed DCT transmission, good for an 8.2-second 100km/h sprint and a top speed of 223km/h.
The new B-Class offers a “balance of practicality, comfort, space and safety”, said president and chief executive of Mercedes-Benz Singapore Philipp Hagenburger.
The new B-Class is slipperier through the air with a 0.24 drag coefficient compared with the 0.25 of the old one.
As a result of that, Mercedes claims wind noise has been reduced through “extensive detail work”, allowing for a “relaxed conversation” on the go.
Larger than the outgoing model, the new B-Class also gets a much more high-tech interior.
Chief among the improvements is the inclusion of the Mercedes-Benz User Experience (MBUX) multimedia system.
First rolled out on the A-Class, the B-Class gets the MBUX system with voice control, displayed across twin 10.25-inch displays.
You can activate it with the “Hey Mercedes” hotword, part of the system’s natural speech recognition capabilities.
Other smart technology in the B-Class filters down from the S-Class, including semi-autonomous driving capabilities with the optional Driving Assistance package.
Mercedes-Benz’s DISTRONIC helps the driver to maintain a distance from the vehicle in front but also nudges the steering wheel to keep you on track on bends.
The package also includes, among others, autonomous emergency braking, blind spot assist and active braking assist with cross-traffic alert.
The cabin of the new B-Class gets the usual modern Mercedes-Benz styling, including turbine air vents, ambient lighting and a touchpad.