Mercedes did go through some struggle not that far away. Hard times were not hard as Kia’s one during Asian economic crisis or Porsche’s one at the beginning of 90’s, but it was rather a huge blow to the prestige image of the brand. Its sales volume was first overrun by Munich and then even by Ingolstadt, leaving Stuttgart cornered and ashamed after so many years of absolute reign. Anyway, Merc pull itself together, it regained its crown today, and one of the things that the company may thank to is definitely huge widening of model lineup. The set course remains, and that will eventually lead us to 2018 Mercedes X-Class.
Let’s say that X is a proper letter for its name because it is something definitely not foretold in the past. It will be the first pickup truck from Mercedes and first available by premium car maker, at least that is what Germans are claiming.
Ok, we have to correct obvious lie here, since we already had Lincoln Mark LT and Cadillac Escalade EXT, so then it will be the first non-American luxury brand to offer that kind of thing. At the end about X-Class bombshell, Mercedes has accustomed us to being first or among the first in the industry in many things, so actually, there is nothing surprising about that.
INSIDE AND OUT
Final looks of the X-Class is unknown, but we had the opportunity to see two concepts. One would be Concept X-Class Powerful Adventurer as a presentation of how rugged Merc could go in the world of trucks, while other is Concept X-Class Stylish Explorer which should provide evidence that pickup can pack some lavish luxury besides its rough nature. We should expect that final look of the production model to be closely drawn from mentioned concepts, whether is going to lean on one or other side, we don’t know, or maybe both concepts will have their five minutes.
That is not strange, at all. Take a look at Ford F-150 Limited, often bought as a status symbol and living along with F-250 Super Duty which probably sees more mud than tarmac in its life. Anyway, Merc can do both, luxury part is obvious in its lineup, but don’t forget about the cheaper side of it, featured in many brand’s commercial vehicles.
UNDER THE SKIN
As globalization is in its full swing, it was unreasonable to expect that Germans develop X-Class from scratch. That means it borrowed Nissan Navara underpinnings, same as Renault Alaskan did. Don’t expect some quasi-truck as Honda Ridgeline is, with unibody chassis, but also don’t expect hard-core working abilities as rear axle is not solid. This is supposed to be one the best behaving trucks on the road, with bespoke Merc’s smoothness, but which can also get dirty if you really decide to push expensive three point star into something like that.
Dirty part is taken care of by 4WD with two locking differentials and low range gearbox, but then you can make it AWD if you want to enjoy hassle free ride on civilized roads. The payload is 1,200 kg while towing power is 3,500 kg which are competitive numbers. Under the hood will probably settle 3.0-litre V6 diesel engine delivering 261 hp and 620 Nm of torque. Which four-cylinder unit is going to be offered underneath it, is unknown yet, one of the possibilities is to see the 2.3-liter I4, but that still needs to be confirmed.
You might have gone wrong in your thinking about possible rivals for this kind of Benz. Caddy and Lincoln have dropped the game, so you possibly lined it up against high-end F150 or Silverado, but that would not be the case here. X-Class doesn’t shoot for the American market, it is more Europe and Australia-oriented, and it is a mid-size truck in the first place. That will make it uniquely luxuries view of a pickup truck, between seas of Hiluxes, L200s, Navaras and Amarok roaming old continent, while none of them is even trying to go there.
2018 Mercedes X-Class Video
Here is what’s interesting. Nobody knows how the 2018 Mercedes X-Class is going to look, both inside and out, nobody knows precisely what would lie under the hood, and nobody even knows how much it will cost. All that aside as you can order one right now and pay $1,000 deposit to be among the first to get it when it arrives later in the year. We dare you!