Mercedes Sprinter 4x4 likely headed stateside

The all-wheel-drive Sprinter will likely arrive at U.S. dealerships by 2015 at the latest.

Though the Sprinter 4x4 was originally announced as a Europe-only model, Mercedes-Benz has decided that it will likely also offer the van in the United States.

As its name suggests, the Sprinter 4x4 is a variant of Mercedes' full-size van that has been fortified for inclement weather and off-road excursions with an all-wheel-drive system. The setup features push-button activation and a fixed 35/65 output split between the front and rear axles, while four inches of additional ground clearance further enhance capability.

Those interested in venturing far beyond the beaten path can opt for a low-range transfer case.

In the United States, buyers should plan on a 188 horsepower, 325 lb-ft of torque 3.0-liter turbodiesel V6 mated to a five-speed automatic as the only powertain option. The 2.1-liter turbodiesel four-cylinder and six-speed manual available in Europe aren't likely to make it across the pond.

The Sprinter 4x4 should arrive in U.S. showrooms no later than 2015, according to an Automotive News report. As with Mercedes' other Sprinter models, it will also be marketed under the Freightliner brand.

For the complete story on the Sprinter 4x4, check out the debut article here.

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