What is it like on the inside?
And you thought an E-Class estate had a big boot. The Vito is colossal in the back, though it must be said, not the most massive van on the market at this price. You do get twin sliding side doors as standard though, which makes loading and manoeuvring cumbersome objects inside much easier, especially if parking is tight. The rear doors open to almost 180 degrees and are stiffly sprung so they don’t swing back and take your fingers off on a windy day.
The L1 and L2 will swallow two standard pallets on the floor, while the L3 can take three pallets. All versions, however long, offer 2,800mm of load space between the bare metal wheelarches. Given this is a Mer-say-deez, it’d have been nice to see perhaps the Premium model cover these vulnerable, easily-scuffed areas in rubber matting. The interior skin is at least shielded by sacrificial wooden panelling that’s easily removeable. You get a few metal loops for lashing bungee cords to, but otherwise, it’s a gimmick-free zone in the back. As it should be. However, you can spec a whole suite of optional packages inside to suit how your van will be used: sliding rails, load compartment trays, and even a wooden floor are all possible if you’re running a mobile dance studio.
Up front, you might expect the Vito to mirror the sumptuous V-Class interior, complete with floating tablet infotainment, C-Class esque dials, and a luxuriant sweep of wooden trim. But no. It’s a 1960s tower block of plastic inelegance. But that’s fine – it’s hard-wearing and simple to use, with all the switchgear coming from last-gen Mercs and therefore, considerably easier to use than a new A-Class. Annoyingly there’s no in-built phone mount, though the recent inclusion of Apple CarPlay will help with that particular connectivity bugbear.
Seating is three-abreast, and comfortably so. You even get a bit of backrest adjustment so you’re not forced to sit bolt upright against the bulkhead. There’s a decent range of steering adjustment and the seat is properly spongey, and is strangely welcoming after a hard day’s graft, whatever one of those is.