Mercedes Benz has launched the top end version of the B-Class hatchback in Australia. The B250 variant of the B-Class hatchback, Sports Tourer in Mercspeak, features the 2 liter-four cylinder turbo petrol engine delivering a peak power of 208 Bhp with peak torque rated at 350 Nm. This transversely(East-West) mounted engine is mated to a 7 speed dual clutch automatic gearbox, that puts power to the front wheel of the car. Given that the B-Class is based on Mercedes Benz’s brand new MFA platform, all its current variants come in the front wheel drive guise.
Apart from the more powerful engine, the top end variant of the B-Class gets lowered suspension to make for a lower stance. The car also gets 18 inch alloy wheels and a paint job that eliminates most of the chrome bits, to endow the B250 will a more aggressive look. Bi-Xenon headlamps and drilled front disc brakes are the other bits on the B-Class B250 variant that signifies its positioning as the top end variant. The B-Class hatchback is expected to get an all wheel drive layout in the future, specifically in the AMG spec version of this car and this is expected to happen sometime in 2013.
The B-Class hatchback is also sold in India, as Mercedes Benz’s entry level luxury car. In India, the car is available only with a 1.6 Liter turbo petrol engine currently. Mercedes Benz plans to launch a 1.8 Liter turbo diesel engine for the B-Class in India, in the next few months with its engineers working feverishly to convert the diesel engine of the car to run on India-spec diesel. The diesel engined B-Class could do well in India given that the overwhelming majority of luxury cars sold in India feature turbo diesel power. The arrival of the B-Class diesel in India could coincide with CKD assembly of this car.
Currently, the B-Class is being imported as a completely built unit. However, CKD assembly will not result in the price of the B-Class being reduced given that Mercedes Benz India has already factored in the price differential in the pricing of the B-Class. The German luxury car maker will also launch the A-Class sports hatchback in India during 2013. The A-Class is expected to be positioned under the B-Class in terms of price and positioning, making for the brand’s least priced luxury car in the Indian car market.