2011 Mercedes-Benz B-Class Photos Leaked by EU Patent Office

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The European trademark office has done it again; following the premature leaks of the 2010 Mazda3, Renault Megane Coupe and the 2010 Nissan 370Z Roadster, the latest slip out from the bureau concerns the first official photos of Mercedes-Benz' new B-Class hatch that will compete head on with the Audi A3 and VW Golf. According to our sources, the new B-Class will be unveiled sometime in 2010 with sales starting in Europe towards the end of the year and in the U.S. and other international markets, during the first half of 2011.

Mercedes-Benz officials have high hopes for the new B-Class that will spawn a whole range of models including a three-door hatchback, a small four-door coupe sedan in the likes of the CLS called BLS plus a small SUV model that will most likely be named BLK.

Power will come from a variety of naturally aspirated and turbocharged gasoline engines as well as 'uber' clean diesels including the range-topping 2.2-liter CDi with an output of 204-horsepower. There's also talk of a gasoline-hybrid variant but Mercedes-Benz has yet to confirm the rumors.