Mercedes X-Class

After almost 10 months of waiting since its reveal in October last year, Mercedes-Benz finally showcased the X-Class premium pickup in metal form. It is the first pickup truck from the German premium automaker.

According to Mercedes-Benz, the X-Class will be manufactured in cooperation with the Renault-Nissan Alliance. The production will take place at the Nissan plant in Barcelona, Spain this year. At launch, it will be available in 3 model variants: the X-Class Pure, X-Class Progressive, and the X-Class Power – all of which bear distinct design qualities and functionalities. 

Upfront, the X-Class retains the similar styling as compared to the brand's typical SUV front apron. The fascia is consisted of a twin-louvre radiator grille with a centrally-positioned star emblem, high hood, and wraparound headlamps. The wheels are 22-inch light-alloys that are placed under its large wheel arches. The X-Class is based on the Nissan Navara, which makes its body closely comparable with the Japanese truck.

As for its rear, the X-Class is said to be the only mid-size pickup truck to offer lighting in the cargo area, which can be switched on and off on the center console. Aside from this, customers can order the Merc pickup without the rear bumper on it. The sole purpose of this is to have a tailgate that can open to 180 degrees - if the typical 90 degrees could not suffice.

Meanwhile, the interior is what makes the X-Class a Mercedes. A concave-trimmed instrument panel can be observed right away, which stretches across the entire width of the instrument cluster. Each of the 3 variants offers unique set of design and equipment line. The X-Class, for example, features pixilated matt black, aluminum effect, and brown matt woodgrain trims, contrasted by a black or nut brown Artico synthetic leather. 

For tech-bits, the premium pickup gets a 8.4-inch COMAND Online multimedia system with a 960 x 540-pixel resolution. In addition, it has the high-contrast IPS technology that results to high definition image quality of the 360-degree camera and navigational maps. Moreover, 12 buttons are integrated on the steering wheel, alongside a multifunctional touchpad for improved control over audio and height adjustment.

What's under the hood? A variation of 4- and 6-cylinder engine will power the X-Class. At launch, there will be two 2.3-liter 4-cylinder engines that will be available – the X 220 d and X 250 d. The 2.3-liter diesel engine will be available in 2 power outputs: 163 hp for the X 220 d and 190 hp for the X 250 d. These will be mated to a 6-speed manual transmission and an available 7-speed automatic for the X 250 d 4MATIC models.  

The X 350 d V6 engine, on the other hand, is expected to be released in 2018. This can churn out 258 hp and 550 Nm of maximum torque. It will be mated to a 7-speed Tronic Plus automatic transmission with paddle shifts and ECO start/stop function. All X 350 d models come in 4MATIC.  

However, it seems like we're far away from seeing a Mercedes pickup truck as of now. Currently, the only markets that were announced were Europe, South Africa, Australia, Argentina, and Brazil. Of note, the X-Class will be available in Europe by November 2017, while South African and Australian markets are set to have it in the beginning of 2018. Then, it will be available in Argentina and Brazil by the start of 2019.

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