In South Africa purchasing a larger vehicle like your SUV, Crossovers and Bakkies is the norm and people are not purchasing a bakkie to be a work horse. The market is flooded with these cars. And choosing the vehicle that fit you perfectly can be a mission, as I am still on the fence with the new Mercedes bakkie. I was not overly impressed with the X250d as that was not the Mercedes quality I grew to love. Then Mercedes launched the X350d and yes it is slightly better than its baby brother but in today’s market it will not survive. Mercedes Benz have not met their sales targets with the X Class but there is still a huge opportunity to turn that around. Imagine being behind the wheel on a G Class which is all Benz built, now an X Class which is all Benz and an AMG line?
The X350d is a 3.0 liter V6 turbo diesel pushing out 190kW and 550Nm of power. The X350d is four wheel drive and Mercedes well known 7 speed automatic gearbox perfect for on and off-road. 0-100 km/h in 10 seconds, which is not bad for this bakkie. Our average fuel consumption was 10.3 liters per 100km. Mercedes claims the top speed is 205-kmh. On road capability is just has it says with the V6 badge. Overtaking is a breeze and being a Mercedes-Benz Bakkie you still will receive the cool look at the traffic lights. As the X Class is based from the Nissan Nivara, you can still spot the similarities. I’m still in-love with the rear lights, makes the bakkie look sleek.
The cabin is not what you would expect from Mercedes Benz, it is very basic and this is the upsetting part along with the price tag. There are two conflicting problems
It’s a Mercedes
It’s a bakkie
How do you marry the two? Mercedes is known class and quality. A bakkie is a small truck with low sides for loading goods (a work horse). Many manufactures got it right like Ford with the Wildtrack – luxury and a bakkie in one. Mercedes got the bakike part right however missed the boat again on the quality they offer in their other vehicles. The vehicle comes out in two versions: Progressive and Power.
Progressive is the lower range and offers 17-inch alloy wheels, multifunction steering wheel and fabric seats. The Power model has 18-inch alloys, multifunction steering wheel, LED headlights and leather seats. Both directives come with the V6 Mercedes engine.
Mercedes Benz X Class 350d Progressive: R914 711
Mercedes Benz X Class 350d Power: R986 711
The Verdict: the problem is that we expect a certain level of quality from a manufacture and when they step out of their comfort zone we expect there shouldn’t be a change in some areas. Let’s give Mercedes credit for the X Class and this is a point for the X Class to be better. In this segment I would not purchase the X Class and I would go for the Volkswagen 3.0 V6 TDI 4 Motion Amarok at R791 100. Did some research and there won’t be a V8 AMG X Class as this vehicle is not in the AMG plans, I hope this does change. If you wanted more power Brabus will upgrade the power to 211kW and 610 Nm.