After going back and forth several times, what is the truck's fate?
To say that Mercedes-Benz has been indecisive about its upcoming X-Class pickup truck would be an understatement. First, Mercedes announced that the X-Class would not be coming to the US, claiming that mid-size pickup trucks, and a luxury one this case, do not sell well there. We guess Mercedes has never heard of the Toyota Tacoma or fully-loaded GMC Canyons. After hearing that the X-Class would still be sold in Canada, we had a glimmer of hope, and the automaker even hinted that it might change its mind about the US.
The X-Class was present at this year's Geneva Motor Show, which made it the perfect opportunity to ask Mercedes about its US market fate. Daimler CEO Dieter Zetsche told Car and Driver that the X-Class is bound for production, but will not be offered in the US. After we pause for a moment to mend our broken hearts, we wondered why Mercedes had forsaken us. It turns out, Mercedes is sticking to its explanation that mid-size trucks do not make enough market sense in the US. Full-size trucks have larger profit margins. However, we'd like to offer a solution that may work for Mercedes:build a pickup truck that's larger than the X-Class, and call it the XL-Class. The naming does make perfect sense.
The US market is kind of a no-man's land for imported pickup trucks thanks to the ridiculous law called the Chicken Tax. This arbitrary law from the 1960s makes it almost impossible to sell a truck in the US that isn't built in the US. The X-Class would probably cost too much in the US, and Mercedes doesn't think that customers will pay the premium. Hopefully Mercedes will stop getting our hopes up and let our dreams of a US-spec X-Class fade into the darkness. But a full-size XL-Class? Remember, Mercedes does have a manufacturing facility in Alabama.