Mercedes-Benz has released the first teaser image of the new T-Class van that will reportedly replace the Citan in Europe later this year.

While the image by Germany's Auto Motor und Sport only depicts the basic silhouette, indication of what the headlights will look like plus the thee-pointed star badge, the newcomer will once again be made in partnership with the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance and, like the Citan, spun-off of the next generation Renault Kangoo.

A model that has copped some flack on the Old Continent for its obvious Renault roots, Stuttgart's Head of Vans, Marcus Breitschwerdt, has indicated that the T-Class, which refers to the passenger model and not the panel van that will seemingly retain the Citan name, will be different from its predecessor in that it will adopt a more Mercedes-Benz rather than Renault feel.

Mercedes-Benz teases Citan replacing T-Class small van

"The new Citan will be a completely new development and a vehicle that is clearly recognisable as a Mercedes-Benz at first glance. We will give the successor to our small vans a brand-typical identity," the publication quoted Breitschwerdt as saying.

Already seen undergoing pre-production testing, the Citan/T-Class will most likely continue with the Renault supplied 1.5-litre turbodiesel engine, which in the current model offers a choice of three outputs; 59kW/210Nm in the 108 CDI, 70kW/230Nm in the 109 CDI and 85kW/260Nm in the range-topping 111 CDI. Regardless of the output, only a six-speed manual gearbox is offered with drive going to the front wheels.

For the first time though, an all-electric model will will be added, reportedly using the same 52 kW unit as the Kangoo Z.E that offers a range of 400 km between trips to the plug. At present, no word of either model coming to South Africa has been made.

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