The All New Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 2013

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Blind Spot Assist: safe lane changing

Mercedes-Benz Sprinter Blind Spot

Lane-changing in urban traffic, overtaking outside of built-up areas and on the motorway – all these situations require drivers to make safety-critical decisions in a matter of seconds. The Sprinter possesses large exterior mirrors with a wide field of vision which is further enhanced by wide-angle lenses. The optional new feature Blind Spot Assist – another first for the van segment – additionally helps the driver by warning him of other vehicles in the so-called blind spot during lane changing.

The new Blind Spot Assist function is operational from a speed of approx. 30 km/h. It is based on a total of four close-range radar sensors. These are installed on the right and left behind the side rub strips in the area of the B-pillar and the rear corner pillar and cover the area of the neighbouring lanes. When the sensors identify a car or motorcycle in the blind spot while the vehicle is on the move, a red warning signal appears in the exterior mirror on the side concerned. When the assistance system detects that the driver has activated the indicator and thus intends to change lane despite the warning, he receives an additional warning in the form of an acoustic signal and the red warning symbol begins to flash.

This assistance function can be deactivated by the driver.

Lane Keeping Assist: keeping the vehicle on course

Even more dangerous than careless lane changing is involuntary lane changing – when the driver is distracted or inattentive, for example. The optional Lane Keeping Assist function is now available to provide a timely warning here.

Lane Keeping Assist incorporates sophisticated technology. A camera behind the windscreen films the road ahead. An integrated electronic control unit measures the recorded data continuously, identifying the road surface and markings by reference to differences in contrast. If the van threatens to cross the side marking without the indicator having been activated or without parallel changes to the accelerator or brake pedal position, the control unit will conclude that the vehicle is leaving its lane unintentionally and will warn the driver with an acoustic signal.

Lane Keeping Assist is active from a speed of 60 km/h and responds not only to white lines on the road but also to yellow markings at construction sites. The driver can switch this assist system off as necessary – when driving along narrow and winding country roads, for example. Conversely, Lane Keeping Assist additionally helps the driver to stay on course when there is little room for manoeuvre – at motorway construction sites, for example.

Highbeam Assist: optimum illumination of the road ahead

The best possible visibility is crucial to safe driving. Driving in the dark is particularly demanding in this respect. With this in mind, the Sprinter comes with large and powerful headlamps. All models are optionally available with particularly powerful bi-xenon headlamps.

The new Highbeam Assist feature is a first in the Sprinter’s class. It guarantees optimum illumination of the road by switching high beam on or off according to the given situation. The course of the road, pedestrians or dangerous spots are now recognisable even earlier and more reliably. At the same time, Highbeam Assist also reduces the possibility of oncoming traffic or vehicles ahead being dazzled.

The system is based on a camera on the inside of the front windscreen which observes the traffic situation in front of the vehicle. When the camera detects two-track vehicles or motorcycles travelling towards or ahead of the driver’s vehicle, high beam is automatically dipped to low beam. Highbeam Assist is able to distinguish between moving and stationary objects. When the road is clear once again, the assistance system switches back to high beam. The camera system also responds to road lighting by deactivating high beam automatically – when passing through built-up areas, for example.

Highbeam Assist operates at vehicle speeds above 35 km/h. It will be available for both halogen and bi-xenon headlamps.

Driver assistance packages makes choosing the required functions easier

The new assistance systems are grouped together in logically compiled driver assistance packages. For closed model variants, i.e. panel van and crewbus, the Driving Assistance package comprises Blind Spot Assist, Lane Keeping Assist, Highbeam Assist and Collision Prevention Assist. Alternatively, Mercedes-Benz offers the Lane Tracking package for panel vans and crewbuses. This comprises Blind Spot Assist, Lane Keeping Assist and Highbeam Assist.

The Driving Assistance package comprising Lane Keeping Assist, Highbeam Assist and Collision Prevention Assist is available for the open model variants, such as chassis, platform trucks and crewcabs. Highbeam Assist is also available separately.

Assistance systems pay

The comprehensive range of assistance systems on board the new Sprinter prevents accidents and avoids expensive downtimes. These systems also pay in terms of hard cash. The Mercedes-Benz Bank offers lower insurance premiums when driver assistance packages are installed, for example. All-inclusive arrangements – comprising leasing, servicing and insurance, for example – are also available, guaranteeing customers an all-round “no worries” package from a single provider.

Mercedes-Benz Sprinter: safety on board as standard

Safety is on board every vehicle from Mercedes-Benz as standard. In the case of the Sprinter, for example, this means a safe and predictable chassis, precise steering and highly effective, fade-resistant disc brakes on all wheels. Adaptive brake lights warn the traffic behind in case of emergency braking. A bulb failure indicator warns of any defective lights and a seat belt reminder function prompts the driver to buckle up at the beginning of his trip.

The latest-generation ADAPTIVE ESP® which features as standard currently already pools a diverse array of functions. The vehicle dynamics control system has come to comprise:

  • anti-lock brake system (ABS),
  • acceleration slip regulation (ASR),
  • electronic brake force distribution (EBD),
  • hydraulic Brake Assist (BAS),
  • Load Adaptive Control (LAC) load-dependent control system,
  • Roll Over Mitigation roll-over protection and Roll Movement Intervention (ROM/RMI),
  • Enhanced Understeering Control system (EUC),
  • automatic brake disc drying system (Brake Disc Wiping) when driving in the rain
  • and anticipatory preparation of the brake pads in critical driving situations (ElecTRONIC Brake Prefill).

If the buyer of a Sprinter selects a trailer coupling or the corresponding preinstallation option for this item, the Trailer Stability Assist (TSA) system also comes as standard.

If an accident is unavoidable, despite the Sprinter’s high level of active safety, the occupants will benefit from the yielding and energy-absorbing body structure. A height-adjustable three-point seat belt with belt tensioner and belt force limiter, two-way head restraints and also a front airbag are there to keep the driver safe.

Optional extras ensure safety tailored to individual needs

Beyond the extensive scope of standard equipment, additional safety options are available to enable customers to adapt their Sprinters to their individual operational requirements. Bi-xenon headlamps with a static Add-Light System and a cornering light function, fog lights, a headlamp cleaning system and a heated windscreen provide for a further improvement of visibility.

A rearview camera, backup warning system and the PARKTRONIC system facilitate manoeuvring, while the Start-off Assist system (standard in conjunction with automatic transmission) helps when moving off on uphill slopes. The rain sensor with Headlamp Assist relieves the driver of the task of switching the appropriate systems on and off. A front passenger airbag (standard in certain variants and countries), windowbags and thorax bags enhance passive safety, while the optional tyre pressure monitoring system ensures the correct pressure on variants with single tyres.

Mercedes-Benz does not restrict safety aspects to the driver, however: all panel vans come with full-width partition walls which completely separate off the load compartment. Numerous robust lashing eyelets secure the cargo, optionally bolstered by rail systems in the floor, at the level of the belt rail and below the roof frame.

Key focus: driver-fitness safety

Equally as important as the safety equipment on board is driver-fitness safety. A well-rested and relaxed driver is better able to manage or even avoid dangerous situations. The workplace behind the steering wheel is consequently a central focus in the development of a Mercedes-Benz. As a result, every Mercedes-Benz van features a spacious driver’s cab and comfortable seats with good lateral support and height adjustment for the driver. The seat position is well chosen in relation to the steering wheel, pedals and the cockpit as a whole.

In every Mercedes-Benz the instruments are clearly arranged and the buttons, switches and control units are always positioned within easy reach. In critical situations, every detail is crucial here: in every car bearing the Mercedes star, for example, the illuminated switch for the hazard warning lights is conspicuously positioned at the top of the centre console.

The exterior mirrors on the left and right have separate fields of vision with wide-angle lenses. The mirror housings are aerodynamically optimised to reduce soiling.

High levels of ride comfort and low background noise combine with effective heating and ventilation to make even the longest trips a pleasure. Numerous well-conceived stowage facilities accommodate everyday items. Precision steering and a comparatively small turning circle round off the range of features for maximum safety and relaxed driving.