BMW Exec Says The Mercedes X-Class Is “Appalling”

Mercedes-Benz made a big gamble launching a luxurious pickup truck and according to a high-ranking BMW executive, it has fallen short.

According to BMW senior vice president in charge of the Asian and South African markets, Hendrik von Kunheim, the X-Class is “appalling.”

“When you look now at our German competitor from Stuttgart I think that product (X-Class) is appalling. You would have expected something more serious. I saw that car (X-Class) in Geneva and was actually disappointed. Very disappointed. They can do better, they build fantastic cars, but this one was a disappointment,” von Kunheim bluntly said to Motoring.

Although the executive isn’t impressed with the X-Class, he did say that the luxury pickup truck segment is intriguing and that engineers within the firm have been investigating such a vehicle.

“I am well aware that BMW engineers have looked into the detail of what it takes. I personally believe, having been in Australia for more than three years, that there is room for a luxury ute, which is not there at this point in time.

“I believe our company could play a crucial role to fulfill that particular niche, but it’s a question of time when this will actually happen. For me it is crystal clear. If the market goes to an SUV share of 60 or 70 per cent then there is also space for a ute,” von Kunheim revealed.

While the X-Class is based around the Nissan Navara, any potential BMW would use an in-house platform, most likely the firm’s CLAR monocoque architecture. Additionally, a BMW pickup could be directly based on the X5 or the X7.


  • Six Thousand Times

    I don’t know about appalling but certainly a cynical marketing ploy – well, I mean, it’s really just a jumped up Nissan.

    • seriously

      isnt the A3 just a jumped up (upgraded is the right term) VW Jetta, isnt the Audi TT just a VW Golf, isnt the Q3 just a Tiguan, isn the Macan just a Q5 the list really goes on and on nobody talks about the VW Group or other vehicles that are just nicer versions of other cars but were having a conversation on why the X Class has different styling and a new interior versus teh cars its based on…..

      • All VAG products from Chirons/Veyrons to Audi have VW DNA…it’s within the same family…get it now?

        • seriously

          I do get that youre a complete and utter idiot……….your point makes no sense…regardless of how much a fanboy idiot that knows nothing about cars…the point still remains THEYRE NOTHING MORE THAN NICER VERSIONS OF “CHEAP” CARS……not to mention Seat, and Skoda which are nearly identical to the VWs theyre based on…please take your trolling to another blog

          • Hahahahahaha…not only are you learning disabled, you’re also a loser…cheers!

          • seriously

            Learning disabled….your name poor English and grammar sum that up nicely…my point still remains youre a complete and utter idiot…I repeat take your trolling somewhere else….how you got out of the straight jacket is beyond me

          • You are a very angry and unhinged person…it’s obvious you forgot to take your meds today…

          • exeptor

            You have your point and this is OK. But I saw that several times in different articles you are using the word “idiot” over and over again. I’m in this car site from 3-4 years and till last 2-3 months there were no such behavior. We had a disputes, but never insulting each other. Please, don’t be that man. Have a good day.

          • botornot387

            Thank you!!!

      • botornot387

        Yeah, but there is a clear difference in the execution and differentiation of the vehicles. The X-Class is GM grade badge engineering. There was no care to even develop or distance the vehicles, and from concept to reality it is a huge disappointment. I am with the guy from BMW. This was a lazy route, especially considering Mercedes has well-rounded platforms from its own SUV lineup that would have been better choices. VAG group cars may share DNA, but you know when you are in a VW, Porsche, Audi, Bentley, etc. You couldn’t tell if you were in an X Class or a Navarra except for the badge.

        • seriously

          Another idiot…I guess my putting idiots in their place work is never done…..GM Badge engineering?? Hmm where should I start, The only “Badge engineered car” on sale by anyone is the Toyota 86 and BRZ as theyre idenitcal cars inside and out save very few minor options and very slight styling tweaks. GM doesnt have any “GM Grade” badge engineered products as your idiotic post mentioned. Selling someone a Q5 with a lower quality interior and for thousands more because of the uh hem “Badge engineering” that went into the Macan is Lazy and despite the fact only idiots like you would spend the extra money is disrespectful to the intelligence of most. The A3 and the Jetta, the TT that costs as much as an A5 but is HEAVILY based on a GTI again lazy………VWs solution to a sports car is to take an econobox that is spread out over some 20 different models and make it a PSEUDO sports car to fight the worlds best?? In what twilight zone episode???? Lazy and really shows the intelligence of those that buy most of VW groups pseudo luxury offerings…..

          • botornot387

            i dont know who you think your putting in their place. Let’s see, tahoe, escalade, yukon. Then there is the the traverse, acadia, enclave. Cruze and verano, impala and cadillac XTS. Yeah, totally not badge engineering. Even the infotainment on every brand that GM makes is the same. They all utilize the same engine. The 3.6 V6 is in so many application at GM, and not good in most. So just cause you have a platform to share your opinion, you are not an expert. You may have your own opinions, but your not schooling anyone, Idiot!

      • Cameron

        Those comparisons make ZERO sense. A golf and a TT? WTF

      • Six Thousand Times

        Yes we are because these two things are not equivalent. The VW group shares a lot of their own components and systems internally. The TT and the Golf share a MQB platform but are obviously two completely different cars. I’ll grant you that anybody who buys a Porsche SUV thinking they got a real Porsche deserves the fleecing they just took. Mercedes Benz has cynically rebodied another company’s pickup in an attempt to make buyers believe they are getting a vehicle designed and engineered by Mercedes Benz. Obviously, that’s not what these customers are getting.


    • fabri99

      Actually, I wouldn’t mind that. Car drama. BMW is the new Talyor Swift. And they could always settle their differences on track… DTM would become a minefield.

    • Felipe Politano


  • pcurve

    pot calling kettle black.

  • Merc1

    He is right, but he doesn’t have much room to talk with all the FWD shit BMW makes now. The loss of driving character and the stamping of M on everything. Pot meet kettle.


    • Bo Hanan

      I agree with all 3 of your points. But I also think this truck (built off old Nissan platform) is worse for Merc.

    • Six Thousand Times

      However BMW does design and manufacture that “FWD shit” themselves. Now, if BMW had simply rebodied a Corolla…see the difference?

  • Kash

    BMW is really getting shitty, first they call the Bentayga a Q7 while they’re doing something similar with the 7 series/Ghost, and now this? Maybe they should be worrying about their sales instead of criticizing others, after all Mercedes is outselling them right now.

    • Belthronding Tinuviel

      İ am all agree with you.
      But what they said about Bentayga and it’s vw-porsche-audi versions is correct. VAG cars are almost same with all others.
      Rolls and BMW are not looking very familiar with each other , at least to me.

  • sidewaysspin

    I want to see an M offroad pickup from BMW.

    • Bob White

      Raptor comes close to the target.


    coming soon : audi q6 (based on amarok)

  • ediotsavant

    He just jealous that Mercedes beat them to it.

    • nellydesign

      Mercedes beat them to creating a faux luxury truck out of a Nissan? I think BMW will just let them have that.

      • supermanuel

        A good point, well made.

  • MultiKdizzle

    He’s right. This will dilute the brand’s image for the next generation which will grow up around this.

  • Belthronding Tinuviel

    bmw pick up? WTF???

  • Dennis James

    BMW exec: “Mercedes builds fantastic cars”.

    Even if you think it, just don’t say it ! 🙂

  • Chris C

    Difference is that Mercedes builds commercial trucks as well but BMW doesn’t. A monocoque pickup – seriously bad idea….

    • Six Thousand Times

      Not necessarily. El Camino and Aussie ute drivers would not agree with you.

  • He called it like it is…this vehicle is not a true Mercedes…

  • An Existing Person

    He may be right to a certain extent, but he is no position to speak for BMW. With no current alliances, let alone the experience or creating their own commercial vehicles (like MB does), BMW has no chance on creating such a product.

  • DM

    I have yet to see one in person, but in the meantime I do have to side with Mr. Exec here. The X Class I think is kind of in the middle between a full on Mercedes Benz product and a commercial MB vehicle. It’s not luxurious enough inside which is a shame since apparently the interior plastics and design is pure MB. They could’ve done better. A loaded F150 is waaay more luxurious inside.

  • Shtekeris

    Well, judging from pictures, this thing is far from “luxurious pickup truck”

  • Mynameis Taylor

    most of BMW’s product line up looks “appalling”

  • Benjamin B.

    Ahem the new X7 isn’t exactly pretty either.

    • Six Thousand Times

      True but it is an all-BMW effort.

  • Braddo

    I agree with him – Mercedes had an awesome concept that somehow morphed into a regular Navara with new headlights. If they had of stuck with the concept design they would of had a better response to what they released….

  • Cameron

    Its ugly as hell that’s for sure. No way in hell would I pay a Mercedes price for that.

  • Kevin Tay

    Even the BMW M3 Pickup looks better than this.

  • SteersUright

    Totally agreed. This is a nice Nissan and an appalling Benz.

  • That yellow really brings out the luxury.

  • Felipe Politano

    Well I think BMW is in no position of calling out anything for being APALLING (man look at that X7) but still: dude has got a point. It’s a sh*tty rebadge job not worthy of the Mercedes brand. And if you look at the market in the long run, REAL luxury pickup trucks are bound to become a thing, and when that time comes, Daimler will regret this.

  • Reichstag

    Wrong way BMW. Ute´s only massive used in australia, where good roads and farms coexist. Medium pickups double cab with chassis used all world arround because are real cappables vehicles for work on and off road, to go from point A (city) to point B (real nature work in real nature) and come back with no issues. This is the real job of pickups like X Class, and that kind of job not far from luxury lifestyle in a piece of the whole pick up market. Toyota, Mitsubishi, Dodge, Ford, Nissan, Honda, VW did it….BMW never did, and dont know and what to do. So call other projects appalling. Easy way. Xclass is a 1rst steep. Perhaps next XClass will be based in the G class (why not). 1rst xClass step is higher than BMW 0 steep.


    View must be nice from that glass house of his.