Mercedes Benz has announced that its new compact Citan has the best fuel efficiency in the class. The Citan is based on the Renault Kangoo mini hauler and the engine is also soured from the French brand.
However, the Citan is available with Mercedes Blue Efficiency features that trim the official fuel economy figure to a remarkable 4.3 litres per 100km for the leanest engine in the range. The fuels saving measures include electric power steering, a controlled oil pump, smart alternator and stop/start technology that kills the engine at idle to save fuel.
A clever system recovers some braking energy to reduce the amount of time the alternator needs to run in order to top up the battery. Mercedes has introduced rolling resistance tyres on some models to drive down the consumption. The company revealed the best efficiency figure of its new Citan ahead of its coming out at the Hannover Truck Show later this month.
Available in numerous designs
The new van has been confirmed for Australian sale, although it is not yet clear which engine options will be available for the local models. A diesel and a petrol unit are available for the Citan in Europe.
Stylish front look
There are three different output options for the 1.5-litre four-cylinder turbo diesel engine. The entry-level unit makes 74hp and 180Nm of torque, the second manages 88hp and 200Nm and the range-topper produces 109hp and 240Nm.
There is also a 1.2-litre petrol four-cylinder turbo unit that generates 113hp and 190Nm. A five-speed manual gearbox is used for the two lower output diesels, while the petrol Citan and the higher output diesels are fitted with a six-speed manual.
There is no word of an automatic version. Both manual transmissions come with a shift indicator system that advises the driver when to make changes and shows arrows to indicate whether an up-change or down-change is required.
The cheapest Citan will cost €14,660 (roughly Kshs 2.1 million), which is almost Kshs 91,190 more than its Renault twin. However the price makes the new Citan the cheapest Mercedes money can buy.