Think of a vehicle that you can take to work, for a party, out on a road trip or even to a race track. Well any car or bike will take you there but can one bring a smile on your face? A sports tourer maybe? There is one. But before you think it’s a motorcycle, let me tell you it’s not. It’s the newest Merc in town, the B-Class. Mercedes likes to call it a sports tourer so we went out to find out if it really is one. Not just anywhere but to India’s best race track and expressway, the Buddh International Circuit and the Yamuna Expressway. It’s going to be a road and track test then. Let’s roll. [h=4]Design and Styling[/h]From the old family van like styling in the previous generation model, the B-Class has actually transformed into a more grown up hot hatch. But since the old B was never sold in India, it doesn’t really matter what it looked like. Let’s focus on the new model then. Viewed head on, the most striking, sporty element is the blacked out headlamps. It’s not just mean to look at but also features a neat projector unit with bi-Xenon lamps. The new design LED daytime lights, like in most new Mercedes-Benz models, flows along the upper side of the headlamp making it a serious attention magnet. The three-point star takes centre stage and though the Indian model doesn’t get the blacked out front grille, the twin slat unit is quite a looker. From the sides, the A-Class concept inspired angular shoulder lines give a lot of character to an otherwise clean profile. The five-spoke, 17-inch wheels and 45-section tyres add to the sport quotient. The sport intent doesn’t end there, the rear end boasts of a small mock diffuser that’s complemented by a chrome tip exhaust on either side. Step in and the steering wheel looks like it came off an AMG model, thanks to the added support and use of brushed aluminum. Speaking of AMG, the standard race pedals are borrowed from the Mercedes tuner’s parts bin, they not only look great but offer good grip as well. It doesn’t end there, the propeller like SLS AMG inspired air vents also catches ones attention and highlights the car’s sporty intent. Quality of materials used is top notch while fit and finish is on par with bigger Mercs. Coming to space, the cabin offers enormous room (more than the BMW X1 and AUDI Q3 SUVs), enough for five adults to travel in comfort. Since the gear selector is placed behind the wheel and there is no mechanical handbrake, a lot of space is freed up on the centre console. The seats offer good support and headroom and shoulder room are impressive. The rear offers quite a bit of kneeroom, 900mm (maximum) to be precise which makes it just 65mm short of the much larger S-Class, if one needs even more space, the rear seats can slide backwards too. Bigger windows also mean there is more visibility than the average sedan. There’s also a sunroof and a panorama roof at the rear that give the cabin a very airy feeling. There’s lot of boot space too, 666 litres to be exact. And if you want to go fishing or golfing, the seats can be folded to offer 1545 litres. This makes the B not just sporty but very practical too.