At present we’ve only got limited information about this ‘van. Indeed, the quoted £50,000 OTR price is only an estimation. More information on which models will be made available in the UK – and when – is expected towards the end of this year.
Front-, rear- and all-wheel drive options
The Mercedes-Benz base vehicle means it will be good to drive
An electrically-powered pop-top is optional
Rivals are less expensive
Rotating the driver and passenger seat is quite tricky
Ah, those pesky steering wheels. If it wasn’t for our insistence on driving on the left (and having our steering wheels mounted on the right), we would have had a lot more of the Continental offerings made available to us here in the UK. A case in point: the newest iteration of one of the motorhome world’s best-kept secrets – the Mercedes-Benz Marco Polo motorhome by Westfalia.
This model has been around for 34 years, but up until now, Mercedes-Benz UK has not stepped into the market in Britain with a Mercedes-Benz badged offering. Originally launched as a Westfalia-only product on the Mercedes L207/208 van in 1981, the Marco Polo is now in its fifth generation and Mercedes-Benz UK has confirmed it will go on sale here for the first time next year.
The reason we haven’t seen previous models here in the UK is due to Mercedes’ vans in RHD form always having a sliding door on each side in order to reduce the number of body-in-white variants for Mercedes-Benz to produce. This has made it difficult to offer a kitchen aisle as in the Marco Polo. We spoke to Mercedes-Benz Vito expert Andreas Rein and suggested leaving the left door and creating a closed rear panel for the kitchen. “That’s not a bad idea, but we will have to see if it could work and what the numbers are,” he said. Mercedes-Benz UK spokesman Angus Fitton hinted that the reason for the launch delay was partly due to engineering work to enable both variants being offered in the UK.
Mercedes-Benz UK has confirmed it will go on sale here for the first time next year
For a compact van-based motorhome, the Marco Polo is quite luxurious – and seats four rather comfortably. Both the driving and passenger seats can be rotated in conventional fashion, although doing so requires some skill and effort due to limited space.
The kitchen aisle to the left (in LHD form) contains a cooker, a sink and a nifty coolbox which rear-seat passengers can access during transit without having to leave their seats.
Clever ideas include the fold-away table that stays attached to the kitchen and slides away when not in use, plus cooker and sink lids in transparent glass so you still get some light into the ’van when all are lifted up. Another neat idea is the carry-box for an outdoor table and chairs which is suspended from the rear load shelf in order to allow extra items to fit underneath.
The control panel in the lower dashboard operates the electrically powered pop-up-roof, programmes the stationary heater and indicates the fluid levels for fresh and waste water.
The Marco Polo sleeps four rather comfortably – and, probably, just as you’d expect. Yes, that’s right, two are accommodated on the fold-down two-seater bench in the cabin, the other two in the pop-up roof.
We found the fold-down bed a little too firm. During our one-night test, however, the pop-top’s bed proved to be ultra-comfortable due to its slatted frame construction. According to Andreas Rein, inspiration for the Marco Polo’s sleeping arrangements came from another part of Mercedes-Benz. “We are a big company, so when we needed advice on how to create comfortable beds in a small space, we sought help from our Actros truck division.”
|Shipping Length||5.14 m|