Wald International Mercedes-Benz Viano Black Bison is Soccermom Chic
While most Americans know Mercedes-Benz as a maker of premium automobiles, in global terms, it’s a truly full-line automaker. Yes, we get a taste of the company’s non-luxury car and SUV side in the form of the Sprinter van range, but the Sprinter is just a tiny slice of the pie. Mercedes-Benz also builds medium- and heavy-duty trucks, buses, smaller vans and of course the mighty Unimog. You can also get most of the company’s passenger cars with smaller gas and diesel engines than the ones offered here, as well as features like cloth upholstery and steel wheels with hubcaps.
But back to those vans not named Sprinter. The Sprinter’s smaller, more car-like brother is the Vito, a rear- or all-wheel-drive cargo van which forms the basis for a passenger van aimed at non-commercial customers (read: families) called the Viano. And it is for the Viano that Japanese tuning house Wald International has developed one of its snazzy Black Bison body kits.
The new front bumper features two LED running light arrays and AMG-like styling, complete with side vents. Side vents are also incorporated into the replacement front fenders, while side skirts help the van look lower to the ground than it is. The rear liftgate is topped by a spoiler, and the new rear bumper features a stylized diffuser and a pair of faux exhaust tips. We like the overall look a lot, though we could do without the fender vents (aka this century’s fake convertible tops).
We also like the wheels fitted to the example shown in these pictures. Wald offers a whole host of wheel styles and sizes, but these multi-piece split-spoke alloys look the business. Besides, why bother with the body kit and leave the rolling stock alone?
However, as with all of their other kits, Wald says you’re on your own with regard to interior and powertrain upgrades. A factory specification Viano seats up to eight people, and is available with a gaggle of four-cylinder and V6 gas and diesel engines, meaning other tuners have something nice with which they can work. And because this Black Bison body kit (Try saying that three times fast. We’ll wait…) is just that and not bundled in with performance and interior parts, it shouldn’t be terribly expensive, meaning money left over for upgrades in those other areas. Nice how that just works out, isn’t it?
Source: Wald International