KILDARE CAR REVIEW: New Mercedes-Benz pick-up has the ‘X-Factor’

Graced with the ability to turn heads wherever it goes

Breda Corrigan

Reporter:

Breda Corrigan

Email:

news@leinsterleader.ie

KILDARE CAR REVIEW: New Mercedes-Benz pick-up has the ‘X-Factor’

New Mercedes-Benz pick-up

The new Mercedes-Benz X-Class is graced with the ability to turn heads wherever it goes, and with a supreme switchable four-wheel-drive system onboard, it really can go virtually anywhere.

The X-Class shares its platform with the Nissan Navara, but Mercedes-Benz have injected their premium-brand magic into the X-Class in order to make it rather special indeed.

Distinctive Styling

The distinctive Mercedes-Benz design of the X-Class consists of a centrally-positioned Mercedes star, simulated underguard, powerdomes on the bonnet, and a striking headlamp design, thereby providing the pick-up with a dominant appearance.

Capable of towing trailers weighing up to 3,500kg, and capable of carrying loads in excess of 1,000kg, the new X-Class is robust through and through.

Underneath the stylish bodywork of the X-Class lies a solid ladder-type frame, which is made of high-grade steel, and ensures that the pick-up will make good headway in off-road terrain. Thanks to the fact that the X-Class is only available in a double-cab format, up to five people can travel in style – on, or off road.

Generous Ground Clearance

When the X-Class is switched from rear-wheel-drive to 4MATIC (four-wheel-drive) in “Low” all-wheel mode, demanding terrain is tackled with ease.

The generous ground clearance of 202mm — and, optionally up to 222mm — leaves plenty of space for rough ground under the vehicle. The second all-wheel-drive mode, “High”, can be activated when driving in less demanding off-road terrain, or in trickier road conditions. In terms of gradient performance, the X-Class can maintain stable handling at angles of up to approximately 49.8 degrees for ultimate go-anywhere ability.

Trim & Engine Options

Three trim levels are available in the new X-Class — PURE line, PROGRESSIVE

line, and range-topping POWER line, with all trim levels powered by a 2.3-litre 4-cylinder twin-stage turbo-diesel engine with either 163bhp (badged X220d) or 190bhp (badged X250d).

The X220d comes with a six-speed manual gearbox, while the X250d is available with a choice of six-speed manual, or seven-speed automatic when ordered in two-wheel-drive mode, or in automatic guise only when ordered with the 4MATIC drivetrain.

Test Vehicle

My test vehicle was an X-Class 220d 4MATIC PROGRESSIVE line, and was finished in Diamond Silver metallic paint. An impressive array of standard equipment is fitted to this mid-spec trim level, with key features including items such as 17” 6-spoke alloy wheels, reversing camera, Traffic Sign Assist, Lane Keeping Assist, Hill Start Assist, Downhill Speed Regulation, comfort suspension, air-conditioning, cruise control, front fog lamps, heat insulating glass, Mercedes-

Benz emergency call system, a compass in the rear view mirror, along with a host

of comfort, convenience and connectivity features. With 163bhp and a healthy 403Nm of torque available, the X220d is capable of sprinting from 0-100km/h in 12.9-seconds, on its way to a top speed of 170km/h (where permitted).

Mercedes-Benz claim fuel consumption as low as 7.3l/100km is possible on an urban driving cycle, but this figure will vary depending on the load being carried, or pulled.

Outstanding Drivability

Where the X-Class really stands out is with the way it drives. Engineers have gone to great lengths to give the X-Class a better ride quality than any other pick-up trucks on sale, and the suspension has been tuned and upgraded over the Nissan Navara to provide ride comfort that puts all other pick-up’s to shame.

While the cosmetic changes have moved the X-Class upmarket, it’s the way that it drives that really impresses. Enhanced springs and dampers help to ensure that occupants of the new X-Class remain composed at all times, while additional sound insulation keeps the cabin as serene as possible. Coil spring suspension at the rear of the new X-Class helps ride comfort immensely, and contributes to the overall carrying capability.

Pricing & Verdict

Mixing on-road composure, with off-road ability (with the optional 4MATIC drivetrain), and a high quality interior, the new Mercedes-Benz X-Class really is a premium pick-up in a class of its own.

Pricing for the new X-Class starts at €39,950 (including VAT), while a host of optional extras are available for ultimate personalisation.

The Facts

1) Premium-Level Pick-Up

2) Powerful Diesel Engine

3) Choice of Power Output

4) 2WD or 4WD (4MATIC)

5) Priced From €39,950 (inc VAT)