Mercedes-Benz Australia is hoping local interest in its all-new 2018 X-Class translates to sales when the high-end ute goes on sale locally in April.
A Mercedes-Benz Australia spokesperson confirmed the company had already received 8000 expressions of interest for the premium-badged dual-cab, the German marque’s first foray into the highly lucrative segment.
The range starts at $45,450 plus on-road costs for the X220d Pure cab chassis in rear-wheel-drive manual form and tops out with X350d (price still to be confirmed).
Launching locally in April, Mercedes-Benz is hoping to catch a slice of the lucrative dual-cab ute market, which accounted for 17.4 per cent of new car sales in 2017, a total of 207,615 units.
The X-Class, which shares its platform with Nissan’s Navara, is already on sale in Europe. However, with Europe generally not a lucrative market for pick-up trucks, Mercedes-Benz is looking to Australia, South Africa and South America for the bulk of its sales.
One region the X-Class won’t be sold is the United States, where, despite that country’s love of pickups, the Mercedes-Benz would be considered too small to compete against behemoths like Ford’s F-150 and Ram 1500.
And those hanging out for an AMG version of the X-Class, as tasty as that proposition might seem, should quit holding their collective breaths with senior Mercedes-Benz management confirming to CarAdvice in Germany this week that a hi-po version is not on the company’s radar.
All prices exclude on-road costs