The Ambiente trim is much better value than the Trend, as it comes with much more as standard including leather seats. However, this is still more money than it should be given the performance of the engine.
PROS: The 2.2 litre engine is best suited to the people carrier model and the long wheelbase means loads of room for passengers and in the boot. The Ambiente is the best trim option, with leather seats as standard.
CONS: Even this engine is not fast and the long wheelbase doesn’t offer much more room than the short wheelbase.
The Viano is far from speedy, but has quite good handling for such a heavy vehicle. However, the suspension is not very good and does not provide a particularly comfortable drive.
The engine is 2143cc and uses diesel fuel with a fuel tank capacity of 75 litres. There is a five-speed automatic gearbox, which provides smooth acceleration.
The engine not as refined as the other Mercedes engines due to how hard it has to be driven to get up to any serious speed and the road and wind noises are also quite loud on the motorway.
The Ambiente 2.2 CDI L has a 161bhp engine delivering 265lb-ft of torque at 1600-2400rpm and reaches 0-62mph in 11.1 seconds with a top speed of 113mph.
The interior of the Viano people carrier is well-designed and high-quality, living up to the reputation of Mercedes-Benz as a stylish manufacturer, but not exactly luxurious given the practical nature of the people carrier.
The seat and steering wheel adjust comfortably and the dash is comprehensive with the Comand system proving easy access to the equipment such as satellite navigation and stereo, although it is a bit more distracting than the BMW’s iDrive system. The seats are supportive and comfortable. Visibility is a little impaired.
The Ambiente 2.2 CDI L comes with leather seats, power steering, alloy wheels, cruise control, metallic paint, air conditioning, stability control, Bluetooth, MP3 connectivity and stereo as standard, with optional extras including rear parking sensors for £645, satellite navigation for £1,710 and climate control for £1,034.
For fuel economy, the Viano people carrier has a start/stop system, which allows for great efficiency and low CO2 emissions.
The Viano people carrier comes with most of the safety equipment you would expect in a high-quality car including driver, passenger and front side airbags, alarm and immobiliser as standard. It also has the stability control, Attention Assist system, which alerts tired drivers, the Pre-Safe anticipatory crash-protection system and a pop-up bonnet to protect pedestrians in the case of a collision.
Mercedes-Benz has a great record in reliability and came 6th in the 2011 JD Power survey out of 28 other manufacturers.
The boot is a large size offering 730 litres with the rear seats up, thanks to the extra room allowed with the long wheelbase option. The Viano people carrier has plenty of room in the front and enough in the back seats for eight passengers in total.
The running costs are high with the Viano people carriers despite the efficient engine stop/start system. The Ambiente 2.2 CDI L model costs £36,470 and has a combined economy of 34.9mpg and CO2 emission rate of 216g/km.
The 2.2 litre engine is the best suited to the people carrier, but still not exactly powerful. The long wheelbase too is not a great upgrade option, as the short wheelbase still has loads of room.
The upgraded Ambiente version offers much more for your money than the Trend version, which is the most basic and does not come with a great deal of equipment.
However, overall this people carrier is still more money than it should be given the performance of the engine and the fact that running costs and emissions are pretty high.
The resale value on the Viano people carrier is not great, but Mercedes-Benz promise good service and reliability as well, although servicing is expensive.
The Viano Trend 2.0 CDI is the cheapest people carrier in the Viano range, but this still does not make it an attractive option. The engine is weak and the Trend trim does not offer much for your m...
The Viano Ambiente 2.2 CDI Long has the best engine option for the people carrier range, but even this is fairly slow. The long wheelbase is a costly addition, which is quite unnecessary as the sho...
You might want to read reviews for other Large MPV cars that you can then compare to the Mercedes-Benz Viano. Here are some popular Mercedes-Benz Viano alternatives: