By KBB.com Editors - Updated Date: 5/26/2011
For 2011 the Mercedes-Benz R-Class crossover utility vehicle has been given a fresh new face, the same sophisticated fascia that's shared with many of the manufacturer's other models. While the change may seem small, the alteration has given the R-Class a more unified look. Potential buyers may still be left scratching their heads over exactly what to call the R-Class, but the "sport tourer" offers plenty of passenger and cargo capacity for families who want a more luxurious way to get around town. The R-Class includes a seven-speed automatic transmission, standard all-wheel-drive and a choice of gasoline or diesel engines. Unsurprisingly, it's rather spacious inside, with feature-rich seating for six people and so much cargo space it bests the huge Cadillac Escalade.You'll Like This Car If...
If you can't quite stand the thought of owning a minivan but require an abundance of space and functionality, the R-Class is a winner. The interior offers three rows of luxury seating and a BlueTEC diesel engine option delivers impressive fuel economy without a power penalty.
Make no mistake, this is a huge vehicle. If you don't find yourself playing chauffer to the neighborhood on a regular basis, something smaller may be a better option. Navigating tight city streets or jousting in cramped parking lots can be difficult at best.What's Significant About This Car?
The 2011 Mercedes-Benz R-Class has an entirely new front-end, complete with fresh fenders, a new hood and a redesigned front fascia. The look borrows heavily from the German automaker's new design language and the big people-mover wears it well.Driving It Driving Impressions
The 3.5-liter V6 powering the R350 is partnered with a full-time all-wheel-drive system and a seven-speed automatic transmission to create a pleasant, but not spirited, driving experience. The R350 BlueTEC actually feels quicker, which is no surprise given the engine's abundance of low-end torque. We found that even on winding roads the R-Class smoothly carved through the turns while the seven-speed transmission delivered seamless shifts, with the shift logic always finding just the right gear when needed. Like many Mercedes-Benz vehicles, the R-Class has both Sport and Comfort suspension settings, and we found the Sport setting quite pleasing and agile. Stopping this heavy vehicle is also no problem with its big 13.8-inch front brake rotors and standard ABS and Brake Assist features. The R-Class also has an excellent turning radius, making it even easier to maneuver than many SUVs.Favorite Features
Second-Row Captain's Chair Seating
The comfortable second-row seats in the 2011 R-Class offer nearly as much room and comfort as those in the front, providing rear passengers a comfortable riding experience that's nearly unsurpassed.
Mercedes-Benz has made the R-Class available with a panoramic sunroof that stretches over six feet. The option does much to help passengers feel less trapped in the second and third rows.