Mercedes-Benz @ Hochgurgl 2018: Stars in the snow

Dec 6, 2018
  • Manager Global Product Communications SUV

Stuttgart/Hochgurgl. Drivers who are often confronted with difficult road conditions, and may even find themselves in mountainous regions, know the true value of all-wheel drive. At Mercedes-Benz there is a host of tailor-made solutions right across the entire range for drivers who appreciate high reserves of traction and excellent agility combined with optimum handling safety, and who therefore turn to a 4x4 drive system. All-wheel drive systems are available from the compact class and the CLS right through to off-road vehicles and light commercial vehicles as well as the Unimog, and in conjunction with a variety of different engines and body designs. And thanks to the continual enhancement of the all-wheel drive from Mercedes-Benz, drivers of such vehicles do not have to forego energy efficiency.

Except for Roadster models, all passenger car models from Mercedes-Benz are currently available with 4MATIC. This is also true of the A-Class, C-Class and CLS model series revised during the course of the year, as well as the new X 350 d 4MATIC (fuel consumption, combined: 9.0-8.8 l/100 km, combined CO2 emissions: 236-230 g/km)1.

Fully variable: 4MATIC in the compact class

The new Mercedes-Benz A-Class is as youthful and dynamic as ever, but grown-up and comfortable like never before. It completely redefines modern luxury in the compact class, and revolutionises interior design. Technologically the new A-Class not only takes first place thanks to MBUX – Mercedes-Benz User Experience: it also offers a number of functions that were previously the preserve of the luxury class. In certain driving situations it is able to drive semi-autonomously for the first time, and MULTIBEAM LED headlamps are available on request.

The new A-Class with the 1991 cc petrol engine is optionally available with the permanently engageable 4MATIC all-wheel drive system with fully variable torque distribution and comes in two output variants: as the A 220 4MATIC rated at 140 kW (190 hp) (fuel consumption, combined: 6.6-6.5 l/100 km, combined CO2 emissions: 151-148 g/km)2 and as the A 250 4MATIC rated at 165 kW (224 hp) (fuel consumption, combined: 6.6-6.5 l/100 km, combined CO2 emissions: 151-148 g/km)2. Both deliver their power to an automated 7G‑DCT dual clutch transmission. The sporty all-wheel drive system has been developed further compared with the predecessor, and now offers even more driving pleasure and efficiency.

4MATIC components include the power take-off to the rear axle, which is integrated into the transmission, and the rear axle differential with an integrated multi-plate clutch. This is no longer electro-hydraulically powered, but instead electro-mechanically.

Drive torque distribution between the front and rear axles is fully variable. Depending on the driving situation, 100 percent of the drive torque can be directed to the front axle (e.g. when driving straight ahead with no increased slip at the front axle), or in borderline cases up to 100 percent can be directed to the rear axle if the friction coefficient suddenly changes.

Using the DYNAMIC SELECT switch, the driver is able to influence the characteristics of 4MATIC even more than before. In the A-Class there are two characteristic curves available for clutch control. The vehicles equipped with 4MATIC have a four-link rear suspension.

The C-Class: 4MATIC for four bodies, as petrol and diesel variants

Having entered its fifth year of production in 2018, the C-Class is the most successful model series from Mercedes-Benz and boasts a wealth of enhancements. In terms of looks, the focus of the redesign work was on the front of the vehicle as well as the design of the headlamps and tail lamps. The electronic architecture is completely new. The customer benefits from a user experience that can be further enhanced by the option of a fully digital instrument display and by multimedia systems with customisable display and information settings. With assistance systems on a par with the S-Class and new petrol and diesel engines, additional technical features have been updated.

A wide selection of C-Class variants are available with 4MATIC permanent all-wheel drive alongside the mid-range petrol and diesel engines, including for example the C 300 d 4MATIC rated at 180 kW (245 hp) (fuel consumption, combined: 5.8-5.3 l/100 km, combined CO2 emissions: 153-139 g/km)2 in the guise of the Saloon and Estate, and the C 400 4MATIC rated at 245 kW (333 hp) (fuel consumption, combined: 8.7-7.7 l/100 km, combined CO2 emissions: 198-176 g/km)2 as the Coupé and Cabriolet. Improved traction and driving stability are of course particularly advantageous in difficult wintry road conditions. The 4MATIC has an active all-wheel torque distribution of 45 % to the front and 55 % to the rear. The combination of the ESP® driving dynamics control system with the electronic traction system 4ETS makes regular differential locks superfluous. This saves weight and noticeably improves handling safety as well as ride comfort.

The top-of-the-range suspension in the C-Class, the AIR BODY CONTROL air suspension, ensures particularly smooth driving characteristics with its variable damping control at each wheel, thus resulting in remarkable comfort. In addition, the suspension automatically adjusts to different vehicle loads and as such increases reserves of safety.

Elegance with 4MATIC as standard: the Mercedes-Benz CLS

The third generation of the Mercedes-Benz CLS is now building more strongly than ever on the aura and unique character of this trendsetting model: the arching waistline, flat side window lines and low passenger compartment make the four-door Coupé unmistakable. At the same time the CLS is another example of the logical evolution of the design idiom of Sensual Purity: sharp edges and lines have been significantly reduced.

The CLS is not only decidedly sporty, but also comfortable. The AIR BODY CONTROL suspension, ENERGIZING comfort control and also the very latest infotainment systems with Office in the car, smartphone connectivity via Mercedes-Benz Link and wireless charging accentuate this. The touchpad with controller in the centre console gives haptic and acoustic feedback when operating the numerous convenience functions and settings.

The most powerful engine is the six-cylinder petrol unit. The new systematically electrified six-cylinder in-line engine with EQ Boost (integrated starter-alternator) and 48 V on-board electrical system now powers the CLS 450 4MATIC (fuel consumption, combined: 8.0-7.8 l/100 km, combined CO2 emissions: 184-178 g/km)2. Its performance data: 270 kW/367 hp and 500 Nm plus a further 250 Nm of torque and 16 kW/22 hp available via EQ Boost over short periods. The integrated electric motor known as EQ Boost assists the combustion engine e.g. when accelerating, makes driving without the combustion engine possible ("gliding") and supplies the battery with power by means of high-efficiency recuperation. By doing so, it makes fuel savings possible that were previously the exclusive domain of high-voltage hybrid technology. All in all, the new six-cylinder in-line engine delivers the performance of an eight-cylinder engine with significantly lower consumption. The CLS 450 4MATIC is equipped with a particulate filter as standard.

All Mercedes-Benz CLS models with 4MATIC permanent all-wheel drive feature a sporty setup with an all-wheel drive torque distribution of 45 percent to the front and 55 percent to the rear. As in the C-Class, the combination of the ESP® driving dynamics control system with the electronic traction system 4ETS takes over the function of a differential lock when a wheel starts to spin. This saves weight and noticeably improves handling safety as well as ride comfort.

The X-Class with six-cylinder engine and permanent all-wheel drive

Like no other pickup, the new X-Class resolves apparent contradictions: modern design and convincing robustness, impressive off-road capabilities and a high level of driving dynamics, stylish comfort and well thought-out functionality. As such the X-Class is the Mercedes of pickups: It delivers driveability and handling that match many demands – both with regard to driving dynamics and ride comfort.

The top-of-the-range X-Class, the X 350 d 4MATIC, features a powerful six-cylinder diesel engine rated at 190 kW (258 hp) and 550 Nm of maximum torque plus the proven combination of the 7G-TRONIC PLUS automatic transmission and 4MATIC permanent all-wheel drive with low-range reduction gear and optional differential lock on the rear axle. The response of the engine and transmission can be changed from comfortable to sporty at the tap of a finger thanks to DYNAMIC SELECT. This combination provides high reserves of traction on snow and ice and excellent agility together with optimum handling safety – for more driving pleasure, even in winter.

The all-wheel drive system of the X 350 d 4MATIC features a two-stage transfer case, which is flange-mounted to the 7G-TRONIC PLUS main transmission. It is fitted with a central differential of planetary design which distributes the drive force between the front and rear axle with a fixed torque distribution of 40:60 percent. This rear-biased configuration provides for enhanced driving dynamics and higher lateral acceleration on the road as well as improved traction when accelerating. Optimum traction in off-road terrain and in wintry driving conditions is guaranteed by a continuously adjustable longitudinal differential lock in the transfer case, in the form of an electromechanical multi-plate clutch. This ensures that the traction potential of all four wheels is fully realised in demanding terrain.

The Sprinter 4x4 defies even difficult conditions

Excellent handling qualities, very good traction plus hallmark safety and effortless superiority: since its market launch in 2011 the Sprinter 4x4 has represented the epitome of the large van which defies even the most adverse driving conditions while at the same time fulfilling all of the comfort promises of its counterparts with conventional drive systems. The third generation of the Sprinter with all-wheel drive is just as much at home on snow-covered mountain pass roads as it is on temporary construction roads or gravel tracks. The number one among vans can also be ordered with all-drive drive with immediate effect. In the new edition of the Sprinter the engageable all-wheel drive also improves traction in difficult weather conditions or poor road conditions in particular, and thus provides additional handling safety and driving dynamics. For demanding applications a reduction gear can additionally be ordered. For the first time the 7G-TRONIC PLUS automatic transmission is also optionally available for the Sprinter with all-wheel drive, enabling high ease of shifting and exemplary fuel efficiency.

More than ever before, Mercedes-Benz Vans is using the technology of the Daimler group to redefine the van sector in terms of comfort, ergonomics and functionality. The new Sprinter impresses with numerous equipment features and operating concepts that raise the large van segment to a new level.. Outstanding new features include the new MBUX multimedia systems (Mercedes-Benz User Experience), the control and display concept in the cockpit, ergonomically shaped seats and the latest assistance systems.

The Unimog U 4023 – the standard for perfection in off-road terrain

It is only the most demanding of routes in extreme off-road terrain that really highlight the formidable handling qualities of the Unimog. The basis for this comes courtesy of the all-terrain suspension: the welded frame and tubular cross-members guarantee good robustness and torsional flexibility of up to 600 mm. This is matched by the degree of articulation of up to 30 degrees. On top of this there are portal axles, the low vehicle centre of gravity and extremely favourable values for the angle of approach (44 degrees at the front, 51 degrees at the rear), breakover angle (34 degrees) and slope climbing ability (45 degrees) – all this is what characterises the all-terrain Unimog. In addition it boasts a maximum fording depth of up to 1.20 m and a side tilting angle of 38 degrees. Driving in extreme situations with all-wheel drive engaged is supported by the engageable differential locks and the tyre pressure control system. Single tyres have been part of the Unimog concept since day one - the rear wheels follow the front wheels precisely in a track and thus make use of the stability of the already compacted driving surface.

The special capabilities in difficult off-road terrain are supported by the mid-engine design. With the introduction of the Euro VI European emissions standard, the engine has been moved one metre towards the rear, a measure which not only helped with accommodating the additional equipment required for Euro VI, but also improved traction and off-road handling thanks to the central centre of gravity.

The Unimog U 4023 is driven by a four-cylinder engine with an output of 170 kW (231 hp – which is what the 23 in the model designation refers to) and a displacement of 5.1 l. The high efficiency is reflected in the torque of 900 Nm, which remains available across the entire main operating range from 1200 rpm to 1600 rpm.