Mercedes-Benz To Drop X-Class Over Poor Sales, Cost-Cutting Initiative

Tough days seem to be ahead for one of Mercedes’ toughest vehicles, the X-Class pickup truck.

Parent company Daimler is reportedly planning to drop the Nissan Navara-based model. Germany’s Automobilwoche cites unnamed sources from the automaker who claim the X-Class will be sacrificed as Daimler aims to reduce costs amid profit warnings.

If true, it’s an interesting decision that would basically equate to Mercedes-Benz admitting it got the pickup segment wrong. Last year, the carmaker sold only 16,700 units of the X-Class in Europe, Australia, and South Africa, despite the fact that the model launched only two years ago.

The fact that the X-Class is not sold in the United States, the world’s biggest pickup market, probably didn’t help either. Sales have also been hit by the fact that Mercedes-Benz has issued several recalls already.

The first sign that the X-Class did not have a bright future was a decision announced in February by former Daimler CEO Dieter Zetsche. Back then, the executive said the company would abandon plans to build the pickup for South American markets at a Renault-Nissan plant in Argentina. The X-Class is built exclusively at Nissan’s plant in Barcelona, Spain alongside the Navara and Renault Alaskan.

But probably the biggest problem the X-Class has is the premium pricing that few buyers find justified for what essentially is a rebadged Nissan Navara with Mercedes-Benz exterior styling cues and a plusher interior.

Also read: Daimler May End Renault-Nissan Partnership, Cut 10,000 Jobs To Reduce Costs

In Germany, the X-Class starts at around €37,000 (approximately $41,500) but V6-powered models with AWD in range-topping Power trim are priced from just under €59,000 (around $66,100).

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  • Miknik

    Now who would have thought that selling a little more than rebadged Nissan Navara at ridiculous prices(in most European markets base price means it is some 40-50% more expensive than the base Nissan) would not be a mega hit….

    • CarCzarDesigner

      Daimler Benz went into this understanding the competition is stiff, so they really needed a winner. Good enough wasn’t good enough. So maybe a re-badged, modified Navara wasn’t the best idea. More importantly, the Car companies still can’t seem to learn this lesson.

      • Miknik

        To me it seems that increasingly car manufacturers think that calling something “premium” (or sporty/sharp/…) is enough because customers will buy anyway; Organize a massive press at a 5 star location event and let journalists write a review containing the prepared PR bullshit will probably not always fool every customer though…..

        I really hope this is a lesson learned to some, though I kind of doubt it….

  • OdysseyTag

    Not surprised if true. Hardly see any of these on the roads.

    • Bash

      I’ve seen as many as zero till now.

  • Mr. EP9

    This thing was a Navara in drag and somehow looked worse than the truck it was based off of of; not to mention the quality wasn’t on par compared to other cars in Merccedes’ lineup. This thing never should have existed. I’m glad it’s going away.

  • Paul

    Goes to show that even the likes of Mercedes can get it wrong.

    • Sovereignty

      Especially when they base their investment on an already dated Nissan.

  • TheBelltower

    Quelle Surprise!

  • charlie bear

    LOL

  • Six_Tymes

    Everyone on line pretty much talked Merc into making that truck, including online car site reviewers who interviewed Merc executives and reps at car shows etc. Make the truck they said, it looks great, it will sell… From day one, I always thought it a bad move, a waste of resources. At least Merc isn’t sitting around, cancel it now is the best move, and stop listening to online chatter, including this website.

  • Bash

    Here goes another NTFH story.

  • StrangerGP

    I was laughing since the first reveal at Mercedes desperate attempts to turn a Nissan Navara into a luxury pick-up.

  • Enoch Gabriel Gonzales

    Good riddance

  • Don’tBeSoStupid

    Even though Americans love trucks I don’t think it would have helped sales too much. People like knowing there vehicle is capable even though most people never use trucks as they should be used.

  • Shahul Usman

    sorry, should have used a GLS as a base and made a real MB pickup and sold in the US

    • Matt

      GLS isn’t body-on-frame.

  • low sale cz ,it is based on nissan nivara an not made from scratch at Mercedes-Benz.

  • Sovereignty

    It’s just a re-branded Nissan. Good riddance.

  • Bo Hanan

    Collectable!

  • Sovereignty

    Morgan has built on-average six hundred cars a year over the last ten years. I’ve seen more of those over the last year than I have of Merc’s X-Class.

  • nastinupe

    They missed an opportunity. Should have just done the whole Gladiator thing with the G Wagon and been done with it.

    • exeptor

      I don’t see how this could’ve happened as the price for G350 (which is the base G class) is around $110,000-$120,000. The base Wrangler
      (OK let’s not compare both directly) around $30,000-35,000 and Gladiator is around 10% more expensive. This means that Mercedes should’ve charged something like $130,000 for their base G class based pickup truck. I just can’t see the market as the fully loaded Raptor is around $80,000 which is a significant difference.

      • Bob

        Arguably, people still buy a G350 in droves at +-$110k. It could have been a more meaningful effort for Mercedes Benz as opposed to trying to pawn off a rebadged Nissan Navara cost almost 40% more.

      • Nastinupe1911

        Like Bob stated below, there’s a high end market. This is a new type of customer of a new day. People these days want more high end options. 30 years ago the default vehicles were Bentley’s, S Classes or Ferrari’s. Now guys want high end trucks as well. If Mercedes sold a $100,000 G Wagon Pickup it would sell like hot cakes. Trust me. They are extremely short sighted.

  • Сафиуллинь-Мухамед Рамазанов

    Amazing, now Benz take back in its face it’s own bad decisions

  • I mean, it’s also ugly and a Nissan under the skin. Why would anyone pay Benz money for it? Bad product to begin with.

  • Mike anonymous

    To be honest, it is not all too surprising that the vehicle is being killed off, as it is far from what the company has actually promised to make. Many had been expecting a full on luxury pick-up with quite stellar design, although what we (for the most part) ended up receiving was a vehicle that wasn’t exactly up to par with what the world was expecting. (The “X-Class Pick-Up Concept” Shown Below).

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/bed31a20312b47dd14cd0e4270770d37f207a82b471c9919c3911844ed328fd2.png
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/c797bdffdd3426a7356d351fff2737356dbc5fd26c48f0baebe8a88a09721c3d.png

    I think if people are not purchasing it, then it would be a good move to remove it from the line-up. The production version we received was far in terms of design and luxury from what the automotive industry had been expecting. If they ever do decide to bring it back, let us hope that Mercedes Benz really puts forth their best effort, because ‘When you put your best, into that which you do, it shows’.

  • Alex

    That this car as is was ever approved in the first place is absolutely ridiculous.

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