The X-Class, which was shown in concept form in October and made its first in-person appearance at the recent 2017 Geneva Motor Show, is a mid-size pickup based on the Nissan Navara. It will launch in European, Asian and South American markets later this year, but Daimler believes the truck is too small for American tastes.
The X-Class’ status as a mid-size premium pickup makes it a tough sell in North America. Few buyers will be enticed by a mid-size Mercedes pickup when they could have a full-size truck for the same price, or perhaps even less. The profit margins for mid-size trucks are also low compared to full-size offerings, amplifying the automaker’s hesitance to offer it in America.
General Motors’ expressed confidence in the once fading mid-size pickup segment by launching the GMC Canyon and Chevrolet Colorado for the 2015 model year and Ford will soon follow suit with an all-new version of the mid-size Ranger. Honda also competes in the segment with its unibody Ridgeline pickup, but unlike the X-Class, those trucks aren’t premium and undercut larger offerings in price significantly.
The X-Class will be powered by a turbocharged V6 Mercedes diesel engine and will feature the automaker’s 4Matic permanent all-wheel drive system. When it first showed the X-Class concept last year, the company said the it will be the “first true premium pickup for the modern urban lifestyle,” and will “open up and change the segment of mid-size pickups.”
[Source: Car & Driver]