Mercedes-Benz has lifted the curtains off its new Renault Kangoo-based Citan delivery van several months ahead of its first public outing at the 2012 IAA Commercial Vehicle Show in Hanover this September.
The Citan is the first project to come out of the partnership between Mercedes-Benz's parent company Daimler and the Renault-Nissan Alliance, which was formed in 2010. The new Mercedes van will be produced at Renault's factory in Maubeuge, France, where the automaker assembles the Kangoo.
The production version of the Citan is much less Mercedes and far more Renault that what the German company's teaser sketches initially suggested.
On the outside, the Mercedes van gains a similar front end to the latest A-Class with bespoke hood, front fender and bumper designs. Inside, whereas the German firm's renderings showed a unique interior with two deeply set instrument gauges and SLK-like round air vents, the production Citan's dashboard features a more utilitarian design that keep's the Kangoo's instrument panel.
The front-wheel drive Citan will be available in three different lengths: compact at 3.94 m (155.1-inches), Long at 4.32 m (170-inches) and Extra-Long at 4.71 m (185.4-inches). There will also be three separate models including a panel van, a crew bus and a passenger version called Mixto.
The choice of engines at launch will include three turbocharged diesels with direct-injection and a standard particulate filter with outputs ranging from 74hp (75PS) to 109hp (110PS), and a supercharged petrol engine generating 113hp (114 PS).
A BlueEFFICIENCY package that includes an ECO start/stop function, battery and generator management, plus low rolling resistance tires will be standard on the petrol model and optional on the diesel variants.
Five- or six speed (depending on the engine) manual transmissions will transfer power to the front wheels.
Mercedes said that all Citans will be equipped with an Adaptive Electronic Stability Program that takes the vehicle load into consideration, as standard.
The new Citan will reach European dealerships before the end of the year. The company said it has no plans to offer the compact van in the United States.
Hat tip to Bruno for the heads up!