Mercedes-Benz reveals luxury pickup truck
USA - Mercedes-Benz is jumping into the luxury pickup game, where profits are plentiful.
The luxury automotive brand, a division of German automaker Daimler, revealed a premium pickup truck dubbed the X-Class.
The company on Tuesday showed off a concept version of the mid-size pickup truck at an event in Stockholm, saying the five-seat ride will hit showrooms in late 2017.
But there’s a catch. It’s not initially targeted at the US market, where customers are fiercely loyal to pickups offered by General Motors, Ford, Fiat Chrysler, Toyota, Nissan and Honda. Daimler identified “key markets” for the X-Class as Argentina, Brazil, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand and Europe. It was not immediately clear whether any units would be available for sale in the US A spokesperson could not be reached for comment Tuesday afternoon. With oil trading in the USD 50-per-barrel range and gasoline prices low, bigger vehicles such as pickups have flourished. They bring hefty profits, too. Japanese automaker Nissan agreed to manufacture the X-Class at its plant in Barcelona, Spain, for sale in the European, Australian and South African markets. French automaker Renault will produce the XClass at its factory in Cordoba, Argentina, for sale in Latin America. Renault and Nissan have an existing global alliance and ownership structure. “We will open up and change the segment of mid-size pickups — with the world’s first true premium pickup for the modern urban lifestyle,’ Mercedez-Benz vans chief Volker Mornhinweg said in a statement. “Our future X-Class will be a pickup that knows no compromise.” The X-Class’s top model will boast a sixcylinder diesel engine with all-wheel drive, payload of more than 1.1 tons and towing capacity of up to 3.5 tons.