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Frankfurt LIVE: Mercedes-Benz X-Class pickup

by Ronan Glon

Before you ask: no, the X-Class will not be sold in the United States.

Mercedes-Benz introduced its first mid-size, body-on-frame pickup truck earlier this summer, but we're getting our first look at it in production form here at Frankfurt. Named X-Class, the model won't be sold in the United States.

Visually, the X-Class falls in line with Mercedes' current design language. Like the company's crossovers and SUVs, it gets a tall front end with a twin-slat grille and bullet-shaped headlights. The back end wears slim vertical tail lamps that add a premium touch to the look.

Mercedes designed the X for work, play, or both. To that end, buyers can order the a basic version of the truck with steel wheels, unpainted bumpers, no chrome, and cloth upholstery, a high-end model with alloys and leather, or almost any configuration in between.

The kink in the belt line is an unmistakable sign that the X-Class is based on the Nissan Navara. That means it also shares its platform with the Renault Alaskan, another entry into the budding mid-size pickup segment.

The X-Class' base engine is an evolution of Nissan's 2.3-liter four-cylinder turbodiesel. It makes 163 horsepower when it's equipped with one turbo, and 190 horsepower when it's ordered with twin-turbochargers. The standard configuration is rear-wheel drive and a six-speed manual transmission. However, buyers can order all-wheel drive, and the 190-horse engine is available with a seven-speed automatic gearbox.

For those who need to tow or haul, the X is optionally available with a 3.0-liter V6 turbodiesel that makes 258 horsepower and 405 pound-feet of torque. In its most powerful configuration, the X-Class can haul about 2,300 pounds.

The lineup will be broken down into two models named X220d and X350d, respectively, when the X-Class goes on sale later this year. Pricing starts at 37,294 euros (roughly $43,114) in Germany. The X-Class will be sold in an array of global markets, including Latin America and Africa, but a Mercedes spokesperson re-affirmed the truck will not make the trip across the pond.

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