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  • In a class of its own.
    1

    In a class of its own.

    Robust and dynamic, powerful and cool: The X-Class combines the typical characteristics of a pickup with the strengths of a true Mercedes – a vehicle created for adventures of all kinds.

    Text: Marc Bielefeld | Photos: Daimler AG

Powerful and elegant.

The car moves powerfully along the dirt track, manoeuvres its way down a forest path, blasts through a pool of water - spraying dust and dirt in ist wake. Yet always elegant. The stout yet streamlined bonnet. The stalwart radiator grille with its two louvres. The high cab and the wide headlights that stretch around the wings. The driver accelerates, and the car glides over a branch lying in the road. Then he brings it to a halt in a clearing. Silence. A gentle breeze blows through the trees. Up at the launching site, the men get out of the car and begin to prepare everything carefully. They retrieve the basket, the blanket, the gas canister, various bags and items, a blower.


A powerhouse of a vehicle.

Hundreds of kilograms in total, about to soar up into the sky. But where should we focus our attention? On the balloon that will soon be laid out on the ground and filled with hot air, ready to lift off with pilot and passengers on board? Or on the car that will remain on the ground, in the clearing below the balloon. Doing nothing in particular. A design triumph that has succeeded in uniting seemingly contradictory extremes. A powerhouse of a vehicle comprising aspects of a comfortable saloon. A pickup ideal for driving cattle but possessing the fine features of a smaller city car.


The Mercedes among pickups.

The admirer of the vehicle can’t decide – but he doesn’t need to decide any more. Because, with the balloon having long since risen up and drifted away, there is now nothing to distract his glance from this fusion of two separate worlds. Before him is the new X-Class: the Mercedes among pickups. Robust, highly functional, resilient and an off-road virtuoso on the one hand. Comfortable, dynamic, sporty and modern on the other. A fusion of aesthetics and utility. There’s a good reason why the balloon team had chosen this particular vehicle to travel in.


A reliable off-road vehicle.

The X-Class is, after all, ideal for this type of use: it is able to transport heavy equipment and passengers comfortably and safely to outlying locations, drop them off there, then follow the balloon’s course from the ground. Must-have requirements for a ballooning enterprise. This is because a balloon’s course over forests and meadows, fields and hills is unpredictable: dictated by the wind. A balloon has no steering. And it lands where it lands. Sometimes it’s in a ploughed field, sometimes in a horse paddock. Sometimes on land surrounding a remote farm. Having a reliable, off-road vehicle with which to pick up the equipment, pilot and passengers is therefore essential.


At home in nearly all types of terrain.

The Mercedes-Benz X-Class revels in this type of adventure. Forging its own path where normal cars would just get stuck in the mud, but without compromising on comfort and style or on the perks of state-of-the-art cars, like modern assistance systems, leather seats and digital interconnectedness. And without lowering its standards as it powers through diverse landscapes. Off-road and on-road. At home in nearly all types of terrain. It’s not just the ballooning party who see in the Mercedes X Class a trusty companion. On the Australian coasts, the new pickup is used to transport jet skis and deep-sea fishing equipment, to take water sports enthusiasts to the beach, to carry campers safely through the outback.


For sports fans and adventurers.

It is fully air-conditioned and features an illuminated loading area and online navigation system. And why not? Out here, exerting yourself in the baking heat, you quickly come to realise that comfort and modern technology only harm those who don’t have them. In South America, the X-Class is driven across expansive grassland, from a remote hacienda deep into the Tierra del Fuego, or from a Brazilian soya farm in the Amazon basin to the fashionable beaches of Rio. But Europe, too, has a wealth of suitable terrain for sports fans and adventurers. Whether off-road, on the coasts of Rügen, in the Alps, or in the remote highlands of the Swedish fjells.


Pure, Progressive and Power.

Whether it’s moving elegantly through the city or blasting full loaded through the Argentinian pampas, the X-Class loves both. A true powerhouse that just loves a challenge. The vehicle’s fittings and equipment were specially conceived and designed to ensure its fitness for such environments. Its interior is like that of a comfortable car, which is achieved by means of elegant decorative elements in the cab, the car’s six seat covers – two of which feature leather with decorative stitching – and the roof liner, which is available in two colours.


The X-Class is available in three versions, depending for example on whether you need it as a utility vehicle for a harsh outdoor work environment or as a means of travelling to the restaurant of an evening. These versions are Pure, Progressive and Power. With its wide range of accessories developed to harmonise with the Mercedes-Benz design – including a styling bar, side bar, hard top and hard cover – it can cater for any tastes, and numerous loading and off-road solutions are available.


At home on the asphalt.

Its performance is thanks to the car’s powerful diesel or petrol engines. While the X-Class looks like a pickup, it drives like a normal car. Its wide track and rear axle with coil springs allow for a highly comfortable suspension. The car therefore feels perfectly at home on the asphalt. But if you switch on the all-wheel drive system 4Matic with low-range gearing and optional lock- ing rear differential, you’ll be all set for off-road adventure. No matter how harsh the conditions. The X-Class can carry a payload of up to 1.1 tonnes and has a towing capacity of up to 3.5 tonnes. It is therefore easily capable of pulling a trailer with three horses or an eight-metre yacht, making it unique in its segment.


Bumper bars on its rear, high-tech in its heart.

A car that feels entirely at home off road, yet exudes a designer elegance. A vehicle that makes a single, powerful statement: bumper bars on its rear, high-tech in its heart. This is because the X-Class is also the first midsize pickup to feature such intelligent interconnectedness. Its communication module has a permanently installed SIM card. Depending on regional network availability, this allows the driver to use Mercedes me connect services and to access his or her vehicle remotely via smartphone.


Provided there is a connection, he or she can check the car’s location at the swipe of a screen. The car also comes with a touchpad, multimedia system and voice activation. The concept of the pickup revolutionised: the Mercedes-Benz X-Class. What began as a promise around one year ago with the Concept X-Class study is now a genuine invitation.