If stylistic concessions to the exterior are made to allow for a more practical car overall, the interior takes almost full advantage of that. There is only about an inch more head room for passengers in the front and rear seats than the A-Class, but that car is far from cramped, and the cleverly lowered beltline of the B-Class gives its cabin a genuinely pleasant, airy ambience unmatched among its rivals.
It’s a feeling exaggerated by seats that set the hip point of front seat occupants a whole 90mm higher than in the A-Class, and while the trade-off for this is a driving position that feels more MPV than hatchback, it also makes for satisfyingly effortless ingress and a commanding view of the road ahead.
Indeed, there’s barely any need to drop yourself down into the confines of the B-Class, and with the increased width of this new platform, there’s now also even more space for knees and elbows. Elsewhere, we measured (allowing for a driver of average proportions) rear leg room at 740mm – just 10mm shy of what you can expect in an E-Class saloon – but due to an intrusively raised section of floor and firm cushioning, middle seat passengers won’t appreciate longer journeys. It is worth noting, too, that there are only two Isofix child seat points in the rear, whereas some rival MPVs offer three.