Powerful German flagship will come with a hefty price tag
Given our import duties and the already hefty price on the regular X-Class, could we be looking at the first R1m bakkie?
In his road test of the new Mercedes-Benz X-Class bakkie, Lerato criticised what he called the model’s “exorbitant asking price”.
Lerato has not been alone in that criticism which begs the question just how much the Stuttgart brand will ask for its X350d when it goes on sale in SA. At the moment Mercedes SA says it cannot provide a price, although to give you some idea, in Europe it will start at €53,360 (R888,977) and in the UK it starts at about £46,020 (R848,608), both prices including VAT. Given our import duties and the already hefty price on the regular X-Class, could we be looking at the first R1m bakkie?
What will you get for that million? Well, the X350d 4Matic is the flagship of the range, with a 3.0l V6 turbodiesel under the bonnet that produces 190kW and 550Nm, the latter available between 1,400 and 3,200r/min. The firm is claiming a 0-100km/h time of 7.5 seconds but more importantly an average fuel consumption figure of 9.0l/100km. It will have a 7G-Tronic Plus auto gearbox and 4Matic all-wheel drive.
It will also have a Nanoslide cylinder liner coating, which is the same as that used in Formula 1. Who doesn’t love a tenuous attempt to connect Formula 1 with a diesel bakkie?
What it will also have is the brand’s Dynamic Select system which will provide five different driving modes. These include Comfort, Eco, Sport, Manual (yes, the X350d will have paddle-shifters) and Off-road.
It is all going to become a bit of a battle of the power with the new X350d arriving around the same time as the upgraded 190kW Volkswagen Amarok V6. Then the Ford Ranger Raptor will arrive in 2019, albeit with nowhere enough power to take on its German rivals, but Ford is claiming more usable power off-road and that could make the fight rather interesting.