Mercedes-Benz is working on an all-new Sprinter, but testing appears to be in the mule phase.

Mercedes-Benz is working on an all-new Sprinter, but testing appears to be in the mule phase.

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We are talking about a prototype that is covered by the current generation’s body, usually called a “mule.” As our friends at SB-Medien revealed, Mercedes-Benz is testing several prototypes of the upcoming Sprinter in this formula.

The photo gallery of this story has two prototypes spied wearing the same disguise – a camouflaged front grille. The rear of the vehicle has had its badging removed, but it’s obvious to all that the vehicle is a Mercedes-Benz Sprinter.

The new Sprinter is expected to come to market in 2017, so we should see more prototypes being tested on the road. These will have a production body, but it should not be significantly different from the one that you see in the article’s image gallery. After all, this is a van, and its features are more important than its design.

Mercedes-Benz will overhaul the engine range, as well as the technology offering. The new Sprinter will probably feature more driver assistance systems, along with enhanced connectivity options.

Naturally, these will be offered in higher trim levels and as optional equipment, as the Sprinter will remain a van for utility purposes ahead of anything else. However, since it is a Mercedes-Benz, it will be available with more features than its competitors.

As most of you know, Mercedes-Benz and Volkswagen had a partnership concerning vans, as Volkswagen’s Crafter is built in Daimler’s Ludwigsfelde and Düsseldorf factories, the same plants where the Sprinter is made. The two vehicles share many components, except for the engines.

The two companies have decided to split ways in the field of commercial vehicles, so the new Sprinter and Crafter will be made separately. While Volkswagen will build the next Crafter in a factory in Poland, located around 50 kilometers (31 miles) away from Poznan, Daimler will keep making the Sprinter at the two facilities mentioned above.

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