- Sprinter City 45: length increased by 400 mm
- An additional row of three seats for passengers
- Large destination display system, professional bus equipment
Anyone talking about "minibuses" in reference to the European market is more likely than not thinking of the minibuses from Mercedes-Benz. The wide range of customised vehicle concepts built on the basis of the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter is highly impressive. From regular-service and inter-city routes to touring and transporting passengers with restricted mobility – with a total of four model series and 17 different models, Daimler Buses has just the right solution to suit all requirements in this segment too. The new Sprinter City 45 is a perfect example of this: previously available with right-hand drive only, the minibus plant in Dortmund is now building it in a left-hand-drive version too for use on the European continent and in other regions.
Sprinter City 45: length increased by 400 mm
Within the wide-ranging portfolio, the Sprinter City model series is the specialist for regular-service operations and offers its passengers the comfort of a low-floor entrance, either between the axles (Sprinter City 35, 45, 65, 65 K) or even along the vehicle's entire length (Sprinter City 77).
Like the Sprinter City 35, the new Sprinter City 45 is based on a Sprinter panel van with the longest available wheelbase (4325 mm). In this case, however, it is the version with a long rear overhang that serves as the platform. This stretches the Sprinter 45 by exactly 400 mm compared to the more compact model, giving it a length of 7.36 m. As the wheelbase is identical, the small turning circle of just 15.3 m remains unchanged. This combines with its slim width of 1.99 m to make the Sprinter City 45 surprisingly easy to handle. This manoeuvrability is a great advantage when driving along narrow old-town streets, on side roads as well as in residential areas.
As a result, the new Sprinter City 45 is ideally suited to use on routes with low passenger numbers on the outskirts of cities, during times when there is lower demand such as at weekends or on night services, as well as for regular-service operations in rural areas or in small towns.
An additional row of three seats for passengers
The big plus of the Sprinter City 45 is that the longer overhang means there is room for an additional fourth row of seating on the rear platform in the passenger compartment, increasing the number of passenger seats here from ten to 13. There is standing room for up to nine passengers in the low-floor area between the axles. Transport operators are also able to have as many as four folding seats and a wheelchair bay fitted here.
Passengers enter the Sprinter through a double-wing outward-swinging door that is glazed down to floor level. The entrance to the low-floor area is at a height of just 270 mm above the road. The minibus achieves this without having to resort to technical aids such as kneeling. A fold-out ramp is available for wheelchair users.
In view of the increased space available, the optional version of the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter base vehicle with a permissible GVW of 5.3 t offers added benefits, as it provides extra payload capacity for passengers and optional equipment.
Large destination display system, professional bus equipment
Distinguishing exterior features of the new Sprinter City 45 include its large destination display above the windscreen and the individually designed bus rear panel. The passenger compartment is professionally equipped, with features including a bus ceiling with air conditioning ducts at the sides, LED passenger compartment lighting and a stop signalling system. The passengers travel on light and functional "City Star Eco" seats with padded seat surfaces and backrests. Mention should also be made of the standard climate control system, featuring hot-air auxiliary heating, hot water heating with stationary heater function and convector heating in the passenger compartment.
Besides the passengers, drivers can also look forward to an enjoyable journey aboard the Sprinter City 45. For one thing, they travel on an air-sprung comfort seat. What's more, the standard specification includes a steering wheel with two-way adjustment as well as electrically adjustable and heated exterior mirrors.
The drive system in the minibus forms another highlight: the high-torque Mercedes-Benz OM 651 four-cylinder turbo-diesel engine has an output of 105 kW (143 hp) as standard with the option of a 120 kW (163 hp) version. Both variants are mated to the 7G-Tronic Plus seven-speed automatic transmission, resulting in high levels of driving comfort and great economy.