Brabus consolidates technology in its latest Business Lounge van
Brabus business vehicles have long been lusted after by workaholics and digital nomads the world over. With each of these vehicles, Brabus reinvents the average Mercedes as a powerful rolling office. Brabus' latest Business Lounge puts more tech than ever at passenger fingertips. The upfitted V-Class van also keeps those passengers cozy and occupied with reclining seats, a refrigerator, a coffeemaker, and a full-blown productivity and entertainment suite. If you simply must travel by automobile, not private jet or superyacht, this is the way to do it.
The heart of the new V-Class Business Lounge is Brabus' new Touch Control Panel system, which puts full touchscreen control within arm's length of each of the two VIP rear passengers. There's also a panel accessible from the entryway, so passengers can start setting things up before they even step inside.
The typical passenger will likely start his or her touch controlling by adjusting the seat to taste. The two VIP seats can recline from fully upright to sleeping position and offer massage, adjustable lumbar support, heating and ventilation, all of which are controlled by way of that handy touch panel. An electric footrest below each seat further enhances comfort.
After getting comfortably cocooned in their recliners, passengers can turn their attention to properly partitioning themselves. The power-operated partition system can raise a 40-in (1-m) television or glass partition panel to separate passenger cell and driver cab. In place of the curtains we've seen on past Business Lounges, Brabus launches electronically tinting "magic glass" on the side windows, rear window and partition glass to provide full privacy. This, too, is controlled with the touch panel. When the partition is up, the passengers can use an intercom to communicate with the driver.
Those passengers that choose not to fully recline and snooze the ride away have access to the Brabus Media Center. Videos, music and other content can be played on the 40-in display and custom surround sound system or on individual devices connected via the onboard Wi-Fi network. In a break from the Touch Control Panels, passengers select infotainment content via a media center touchscreen mounted between the seats. The multimedia system also includes an Apple TV and PlayStation 4, and the display can be used to view the feed from the external camera.
The Business Lounge's integrated LTE connection supplies internet, and the Brabus Cloud helps manage content. A built-in inductive charging slot on the side of each seat allows for seamless phone charging.
The Business Lounge keeps passengers hydrated, sated and caffeinated with an included refrigerator and coffeemaker. Hot/cold cupholders keep those beverages at proper temperature once they're poured. A power-folding table at each seat provides a place for snacks, laptops and paperwork.
While designed primarily for two passengers, the Business Lounge can accommodate two more on fold-out assistant seats built into the partition wall. Not quite as cozy as the recliners, these seats are designed primarily for shorter trips, but they do include heating for a little sample of the Brabus luxury life.
The Business Lounge secures valuables in a center console safe. Like so much of the other equipment on board, the electronic safe is controlled via the Touch Control Panels, where an electronic code pops the lock.
Brabus finishes off its luxurious interior with a mix of fine leather, Alcantara, wood and carbon fiber, paying close attention to the customer's wishes. The debut model features an eye-catching combination of black and white leather and blue piping – it wouldn't be our first choice, but it does pop very well on a show van.
Brabus also does a bit of work on the exterior, adding 18- or 19-in Monoblock wheels and a subtle body kit. At the front, this kit includes a front spoiler and air intake attachments. The rear bumper gets a three-piece cladding, which hugs the four tailpipes of the new stainless sports exhaust.
Brabus upgrades the suspension system with sport springs, which in turn lower ride height. The PowerXtra D4 performance kit adds an extra 44 hp of four-cylinder turbodiesel output for a total of 232 hp. A set of high-performance tires provides the proper grip and stability below.
Brabus has launched the new V-Class Business Lounge at the Geneva Motor Show. A complete conversion based on the Mercedes V 250 d van with extra-long wheelbase starts at a cool €298,000 (approx. US$320,000). Brabus will also convert buyer-owned vans. Those in need of a simpler business van can consider the Brabus V-Class Business Light while those that need more seats can have a look at a Sprinter-based Business Lounge.
Brabus' video brings you aboard the new Business Lounge for a closer look.