The current Sprinter van lineup offers a 2.0L turbocharged gasoline I4 engine, a 2.0L turbocharged diesel I4, and a 3.0L turbo-diesel V6. The gasoline engine currently offers 188 horsepower and comes with a 9G-TRONIC 9-speed automatic transmission. The smaller diesel offers 161 horsepower, the V6 diesel pumps out 188 horsepower. The current diesel engines are paired with a 7-speed automatic transmission.
The new 2023 Sprinter lineup will offer only the four-cylinder gas and diesel engines, the V6 diesel will no longer be offered in the United States. The latest iteration of the Mercedes-Benz OM654 turbo-diesel engine will be offered in either 168 horsepower or 208 horsepower versions. Although the V6 diesel is going away, the latest four-cylinder diesel will offer more power. Mercedes-Benz has not specified the torque rating at this time.
While Mercedes-Benz says that the new diesel engines are more efficient than the outgoing version, the company does not list what MPG improvement to expect. We will have to test it on our driving loops to find out.
The entire new four-cylinder engine line will come standard with the 9G-TRONIC transmission. The current 7-speed transmission is going away. As the result, Mercedes says the new powertrain options will offer smoother acceleration, higher torque, lower emissions, and lower noise and vibration levels – when compared to the current engines.
Many Sprinter vans get converted to overland rigs or motorhomes. The current powertrains sometimes struggle to maintain highway speeds up steep mountain grades when fully outfitted in a motorhome or camping trim. The higher power and torque number of the new 2.0-liter turbo-diesel will be great to have. We cannot wait to put these latest powertrains to the real-world test.
That’s not all. The new Sprinter lineup is also switching from the current 4×4 system to a new AWD (all-wheel-drive) system. While the older 4×4 system required the driver to switch between different 2WD and 4×4 modes – the new AWD system is automatic. Mercedes says it can appropriate power front to back as driving conditions demand. Mercedes also says that the new Sprinter AWD model will maintain the same ground clearance, approach, and departure angles as the current Sprinter 4×4. There should not be any decrease in off-road capability.
We still have a lot of questions about all these powertrain and drivetrain changes. TFLtruck will be at the 2022 Work Truck Week show in Indianapolis this week. We will publish several videos from the show, including a detailed look at the 2023 Sprinter vans.
These new 2023 Sprinter van will go on sale next year.