Mercedes-Benz will pivot to its new electrified Van.ea structure beginning in 2026, with new choices each within the business and personal automobile areas based mostly on the brand new all-electric modular platform that may finally exchange the platform underpinning the present Sprinter. And whereas the corporate has no identify for it but (in different phrases, it is in all probability not going to be Metris), one of many first merchandise to launch on the brand new platform will likely be a midsize passenger van with the posh appointments one expects from the Mercedes-Benz badge.
The Van.ea structure is supposed for midsize and enormous merchandise, with the previous representing the core overlap between non-public transportation and business choices. Mercedes-Benz says its non-public Van.ea fashions will likely be pure Mercedes-Benz choices, with upscale cabins and high-tech options, whereas its business vans will proceed within the Metris/Sprinter custom, solely electrified. The rollout will start in 2026, and Mercedes-Benz says America will likely be a part of that transition — a primary for the USA.
That is proper; the USA (alongside China) will see the brand new passenger-oriented midsize van. Mercedes cautioned us to not use the present European V-Class mannequin to border our expectations; what we see right here ought to be extra luxurious, and will probably be marketed as a part of the core Mercedes-Benz lineup, not as a business providing. Individually, Mercedes will nonetheless provide upfit packages and coordinate with aftermarket suppliers for its Sprinter and eSprinter lineups and has plans to stay within the RV area.
With reference to present nameplates: The place precisely do they match? eSprinter, for instance, is already slated to reach in the USA for 2024. That hasn’t modified. Mercedes says its present van platforms will likely be steadily phased out, with their petroleum-based powertrains being provided in parallel to the Van.ea rollout. Gasoline- and diesel-powered variants will stay in manufacturing so long as demand stays, and Mercedes says that ought to be no less than a decade, if no more, even after the eSprinter is changed by a brand new Van.ea beginning in ’26.
Why the gradual roll? Mercedes says its clients are break up on electrification. Some need it instantly; in reality, many are being compelled or incentivized by regulators who’re pushing for a fast transition. However the fleets that want EVs to hit bold sustainability targets are solely a part of the market. Mercedes expects about 20% of its clients to be EV consumers by 2026, with that quantity rising to 50% by 2030.
Whereas eSprinters and future vans will likely be in-built the USA, Mercedes has no present public plans to construct batteries within the USA. Firm representatives didn’t say that the choice had been dominated out. Even below the brand new provisions of the Inflation Discount Act, electrical vans are already worthwhile for Mercedes — simply not as worthwhile as their gasoline- and diesel-burning counterparts.