11 things you should know about the Mercedes X-Class


Cape Town - The new X-Class concept, unveiled in Stockholm in October, marks the first bakkie from a premium German automaker, at least in recent times.

The new double-cab Mercedes-Benz bakkie has been depicted in two distinct body styles; the Stylish Explorer (more focused on design) and the Powerful Adventurer (a more rugged variant). 

The X-Class shares its architecture with the new Nissan Navara, but that's where the similarities stop. The design is distinctively Mercedes. 

And according to Mercedes-Benz the world’s “first premium bakkie” will combine the best of two worlds, as demonstrated by two design variants of the concept model.

Here are ten things you should know about the new X-Class

1. Naming the new breed

Much has been speculated on what Mercedes-Benz will call its new bakkie and at the reveal it was announced that the forthcoming vehicle will be called the X-Class.

Internet rumours have been swirling on the bakkie’s nomenclature for the past almost-two years, the GLT tag was thought to be the name Mercedes would choose.

Gallery: Mercedes-Benz Concept X-Class

Reason for choosing GLT would have made sense alongside the likes of Merc’s SUVs (GLA, GLC, GLE, etc.), but X-Class found more favour with Mercedes-Benz’s head honchos.

READ: Mercedes reveals new SA-bound bakkie - Meet the X-Class double-cab

Image: Ferdi de Vos

2. Does “attractive price” mean affordable?

Mercedes-Benz pointed out that the X-Class will be “positioned in the segment at an attractive price”. Whether this means that it will be competitively priced against the Toyota Hilux or Ford Ranger remains to be seen. It's worth noting that the Toyota Land Cruiser 79 4.5D-4D LX V8 is currently SA’s most expensive bakkie at R731 100.

The most-expensive Hilux and Ranger currently retails for R621 600 and R604 900, respectively.

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3. Set to arrive in 2018

The X-Class, unlike the Ranger and Hilux, will not be built in South Africa but will instead be imported from Barcelona, Spain.

Mercedes’ cooperation with Renault-Nissan means that the automaker can rely on Nissan’s proven track-record of producing reputable bakkies, as well as knowledge and experience.

South Africa, according to Mercedes, is considered to be a key market for the X-Class. 

Production will commence in 2017 with the new model expected to launch in early 2018.

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4. SA bakkie lovers think it will be too expensive

Wheels24's readers have been quite vocal about the X-Class since its global reveal and it would only be fitting to add their comments to this.

Some find the design off-putting and believe that Mercedes should never have built a bakkie, while desperately want to own one. Our homepage poll garnered thousands of votes with the majority of readers stating that the new bakkie will be too expensive when it arrives in Mzansi. 

READ: SA bakkie lovers react to Mercedes' new X-Class

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5. Two models - which your favourite?

The Concept X-Class was shown in two trims: Stylish Explorer and Powerful Adventurer.

Both offer interesting styling cues and design traits, while offering a different package with its own set of credentials. Though it is very likely that both models will be scaled down when the bakkie goes into production, one can only hope that the company does not stray too far off the concept models' designs.

Which one do you choose? Stylish Explorer or Powerful Adventurer?

WATCH: Powerful Adventurer

A video posted by Wheels24 (@wheels24_sa) on

WATCH: Stylish Explorer

A video posted by Wheels24 (@wheels24_sa) on

6. Standing tall

The X-Class will be a tall vehicle, with the Powerful Adventurer towering above the ground with a height of 1.9m.

This could be attributed to the oversized tyres (35x11.50), but the vehicle will boast a competitive ground clearance and appropriate body cladding for proper off-road adventures.

Image: Ferdi de Vos

7. Mercedes safety as standard

Mercedes-Benz is renowned for pioneering technology for safety and the X-Class will host many these systems as standard.

Using cameras, radars and ultrasound sensors, driver assistance systems are designed to enhance safety and comfort.

WATCH: Mercedes teases new SA-bound bakkie

Image: Ferdi de Vos

8. It has V6 power 

The X-Class will be powered by both petrol and diesel engines but the big news is that the line-up will be headlined by a 3.0-litre V6 diese engine mated with the company’s all-wheel drive system.

Three engines will be available, most likely a 3.0-litre V6, a smaller 2.3-litre four-cylinder turbodiesel and a 2.5-litre four-cylinder petrol will also be offered. Power figures have yet to be revealed.

READ: Mercedes’ SA-bound X-Class bakkie - Here's all you need to know

Two drivetrains will be available; manual and a 7G-Tronic automatic, expect a 4x2 and 4x4 with low-range and centre and rear-diff lock.

Merc’s 3.0-litre V6 diesel engine does duty in a number of its vehicles, producing 190kW/620Nm.

Image: Ferdi de Vos

9. It has great towing capacity

Mercedes-Benz says its X-Class has a payload of more than 1.1-tons and will be able to tow anything up to 3.5-tons.

According to the automaker, “the powerful drive system and the tough ladder-type frame” form the basis of the bakkie’s pulling power. 

Image: Ferdi de Vos

10. Luxury is standard

Just because it's a bakkie doesn't mean that Mercedes will skimp on the X-Class' interior. The company says that the vehicle will feature high-quality materials. Judging from the images, the Stylish Explorer boasts dual-tone leather while the Powerful Adventurer boasts carbon-fibred elements.

Interestingly, Mercedes opted to fit the X-Class with a traditional handbrake and not an electronic one.

A video posted by Wheels24 (@wheels24_sa) on

11. Leather trim throughout 

Luxury leather has been used throughout the cabin. 'Nubuck' leather is used to trim the seats and dashboard in addition to contrasting white nappa leather. 

Luxury leather in a C-Class or S-Class? Sure. In a bakkie? We're not too sure how practical this will be. Perhaps this is a bold move to target the more lifestyle-orientated market; the type of person whom will never use their X-Class as a workhorse.

A photo posted by Wheels24 (@wheels24_sa) on

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