Mercedes-Benz X250d 4Matic: Premium pick-up proposal

The German manufacturer’s short-lived foray into the dual private and business use mid-size pick-up truck segment, the Mercedes-Benz X-Class arrived in late 2017 as a response to the rising popularity of this Japanese-dominated segment in the wider context, and perhaps more specifically to the success Ford was enjoying with the Ranger in Europe.  A disappointing sales venture for Mercedes-Benz, the X-Class was discontinued as of only 2020. Nevertheless, it is an impressive premium-brand interpretation of a more utilitarian segment that has struck a chord with some motorists. 

Never introduced officially to the Jordanian market, the X-Class is however available locally through independent importers and is becoming a not too uncommon sight. Popular with a certain brand conscious strata of Jordanian motorists, the X-Class’ press pack underlines the sort of clientele being targeted in countries where such pick-ups are similarly popular, including examples such as Argentine “land owners and farmers”, Australian “business owners and building contractors”, Brazilians with “an affinity for premium products”, “trend-conscious” South Africans and Britons, and “sporty adventurers in New Zealand”.

West looks East Despite a rich truck, van and off-roader making history, including the all-conquering Unimog, Mercedes-Benz however looked to occasional collaborator Nissan, for developing the X-Class. Largely based on the highly regarded Nissan Navara, the X-Class avoided the development costs of adapting something like the Mercedes’ G-Class platform, and instead relies on the Navara’s thoroughly proven and long-running pick-up experience.

In fact, the X-Class wasn’t the only recent Japanese-based European pick-up, with both the Renault Alaskan and Fiat Fullback borrowing platforms from the Navara and the Mitsubishi L200, respectively. Recognisable to keen observers as a Navara relation from profile views, with its short front overhang, small rear window kink and general proportions, the X-Class’s fascia however clearly identifies it as a Mercedes-Benz. Seamlessly integrated with the German manufacturer’s corporate look, the X-Class’s features a snouty slotted two-slat grille with tri-star emblem and muscular lower “chin”.

While its slim headlights and twin crease clamshell bonnet are typically handsome Mercedes fare, its elegantly slim vertical rear lights are meanwhile more unique to the segment and brand. Sophisticated set-up More than just a simple badge-engineered Navara, the Mercedes-Benz X-Class features premium noise, vibration and harshness refinement.

But more importantly, it is built on the more sophisticated European market version of the Navara, which pairs multi-link coil spring rear suspension with a rigid rear axle, instead of the Middle East market Navaras’ more traditional and work-oriented leaf springs. Using the same body-on-frame F-Alpha platform, the X-Class rides on independent double wishbone suspension at the front, and features hydraulic-assisted power steering inherited from the Navara. Available with four engines including Mercedes-sourced entry-level and range-topping options and two Nissan-sourced mid-range units, the penultimate X250d 4Matic variant is however the best pick for its combination of performance, efficiency and compactness.

With sophisticated twin-turbo common-rail diesel 2.3-litre 4-cylinder engine, the X250d 4Matic develops 187BHP at 3,750rpm and a massive 332lb/ft torque throughout 1,500-2,500rpm. Coupled with optional 7-speed automatic gearbox and a weight of 2,234kg to propel, this output translates into confident 11.8-second 0-100km/h acceleration, a 175km/h top speed and 7.9l/100km combined cycle fuel efficiency. Pulling power

A powerful and refined turbo-diesel with comparatively smooth delivery and well-suppressed diesel clatter, the X250d 4Matic is thoroughly capable with effortless mid-range pull and overtaking, hill climbing and towing confidence, including a maximum 3,500kg unbraked towing capacity and 1,016kg payload. A sophisticated sequential twin-turbo design, the X250d features small and big turbos, operating independently or in unison, to provide effective boost and performance over a broader rev range, including better low-end response and high rev urge than many turbo-diesels that operate best in a narrow bandwidth. Channelling its considerable output through a slick and responsive 7-speed automatic gearbox, the X250d 4Matic delivers power to the rear wheels under normal conditions and features four-wheel-drive for most off-road situations.

For more challenging conditions that call for high power crawling, low gear ratio can be engaged. A capable off-roader with 202mm ground clearance and generous 29? approach, 20.4? break-over and 24? departure angles, the X250d 4Matic is also available with optional locking rear differential and 20mm raised ground clearance for even greater off-road ability.

Confidence and class A refined, smooth and stable highway cruiser, the X-Class’s ride and handling abilities owe much to its more sophisticated multilink coil spring rear set-up, which keeps it settled and buttoned down vertically over road imperfections as it confidently dispatches lumps, bumps and ruts in its stride, and delivers improved rear traction through tight corners. Turning into corners tidily and with good in-class body control.

Balanced through corners, the X-Class’s hydraulic steering deliver comparatively good directness and road feel, while all-round ventilated discs deliver confident stoppage.  Easy to manoeuvre with its commanding driving position, tight turning circle and reversing camera, the X-Class’s cabin is a posh affair compared to most pick-ups, and would not feel out of place in Mercedes-Benz’ saloons with its good materials, chunky steering wheel and six crosshair style vents. Thoroughly Mercedes in its design and generous standard and optional, safety, assistance and mod con equipment list, the X-Class delivers generous cabin room for five occupants, a well-adjustable, comfortable and supportive driving position, and accommodating cargo capacity.

TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS Engine: 2.3-litre, twin-turbo diesel, in-line 4-cylinders Bore x stroke: 85 x 101.3mm

Compression ratio: 15.4:1 Valve-train: Common-rail, 16-valve, DOHC Gearbox: 7-speed auto, four-wheel-drive

Driveline: low gear transfer case, optional locking rear differential Gear ratios: 1st 4.886:1; 2nd 3.169:1; 3rd 2.027:1; 4th 1.411:1; 5th 1.0:1; 6th 0.864:1; 7th 0.774:1 Reverse/final drive: 4.041:1/3.357:1

High/low range: 1:1/2.7:1 Power, BHP (PS) [kW]: 187 (190) [140] @3,750rpm Specific power: 81.4BHP/litre

Power-to-weight: 83.7BHP/tonne Torque, lb/ft (Nm): 332 (450) @1,500-2,500rpm Specific torque: 195.8Nm/litre

Torque-to-weight: 201.4Nm/tonne

0-100km/h: 11.8-seconds Top speed: 175km/h Fuel consumption, urban/extra-urban/combined: 9.6-/6.9-/

7.9-litres/100km CO2 emissions, combined: 207g/km Fuel capacity: 73-litres

Length: 5,340mm Width: 1,920mm Height: 1,819mm

Wheelbase: 3,150mm Track, F/R: 1,632/1,625mm Overhang, F/R: 888/1,302mm

Gross vehicle weight: 3,250kg Towing capacity, braked: 3,500kg Suspension, F: Double wishbone, coilovers, anti-roll bar

Suspension, R: Multi-link, live axle, coil springs, anti-roll bar Steering: Power-assisted rack & pinion Turning circle: 13.4-metres

Brakes, F/R: Ventilated discs, 320mm/308mm

Tyres: 255/60R18