Mercedes-Benz Vans Announces an Armoured V-Class in Collaboration with Certified VanPartner, SVI Engineering

Mercedes-Benz Vans South Africa is proud to introduce a new special-protection conversion of the V-Class by an official VanPartner, SVI Engineering. Combining all the famed luxury, power and functionality of the V-Class, the special-protection conversion also provides drivers and passengers the peace of mind that comes with B4-ballistic protection.

SVI Engineering is a leading specialist manufacturer of armouring products and an approved Mercedes-Benz VanPartner. The new V-Class conversion package offers state-of-the-art B4 protection against handguns, up to .44 Magnum.

“At Mercedes-Benz Vans, we strive to gain a deep understanding of our customers’ needs, which enables us to craft innovative and forward-thinking solutions that bring the luxury of ease and convenience to life. Therefore, we take great pleasure in announcing the availability of this special B4 conversion of the V-Class, in collaboration with SVI Engineering. The B4-armoured V-Class retains the luxurious spaciousness and performance of the original vehicle - as well as the vehicle’s standard warrantees - but with the added benefit of ballistic protection. We trust that this added safety will provide our customers with more peace of mind on the road,” said Marinus Venter, Head of Product & Marketing at Mercedes-Benz Vans SA.

Serving as a discreet anti-hijack solution, the armouring package is completely concealed and thus, virtually imperceptible to the untrained eye. Using top-quality imported materials, SVI’s team of experienced engineers systematically developed a B4 solution, specific to the V-Class.

The bespoke package makes extensive use of lightweight Kevlar as well as high-grade 21 mm ballistic glass, with the latter carefully curved to OEM specification. In addition, custom-fabricated armoured steel plates are incorporated into all pillars, allowing the front windows to open up to 200 mm.

All the state-of-the-art Mercedes-Benz safety systems – including those relying on sensors mounted behind the windscreen – remain fully operational. Meanwhile, additional options include a PA system, B4 roof armour and B4 floor armour.

In total, the meticulously implemented conversion – which has a build time of three months – adds approximately 400 kg to the V-Class, a figure well within the vehicle’s payload and easily handled by the V300d’s torque-rich 2.0-litre, four-cylinder turbodiesel engine. This refined OM654 power-plant effortlessly delivers 174kW and 500Nm to the rear axle via a smooth-shifting 9G-TRONIC automatic transmission, ensuring a luxuriously smooth drive and precise handling, despite the additional weight.

Available on all V-Class models, the B4 discreet package can be ordered directly from Mercedes-Benz dealerships nationwide, as of September 2023. The armoured V-Class conversion from SVI comes with the selected PremiumDrive maintenance plan fully intact. SVI provides a two-year/unlimited kilometre warranty on the armouring. Current V-Class owners are also able to add the B4 discreet package onto their vehicles whilst maintaining existing warrantees and maintenance plans.

“Over the past few years, we’ve noticed an uptick in demand for armoured luxury people movers. There’s no better example of this genre of vehicle than the venerable V-Class, so we were delighted to partner with Mercedes-Benz Vans SA to make this OEM-backed conversion a reality,” said Jaco de Kock, Chief Executive Officer of the SVI Group of Companies.

As an official VanPartner, SVI Engineering has successfully completed an extensive screening process to ensure it adheres to the Mercedes-Benz quality standards. SVI Engineering is an original equipment manufacturer, specialising in armoured vehicles since 2004. The Pretoria-based company is a market leader in Africa, serving the private, corporate, security, mining and governmental segments. SVI holds a Level 2 B-BBEE certification whilst its quality-management system is certified to ISO 9001:2015 by TÜV Rheinland.