New Mercedes-Benz Pickup Takes Shape

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Australian sources are reporting that the pickup truck partnership between Nissan and Mercedes-Benz is heating up with more details.

According to Australia's CarAdvice website, the midsize workhorse M-B pickup, previously announced to be based on the Nissan Navara NP300 platform, is likely to be called the X-Class or Z-Class. Although the German pickup is not officially slated for the U.S., the next-generation Nissan Frontier could be based on this same Nissan Navara and offer many similar features and design characteristics.

CarAdvice also is reporting that the new global M-B pickup will have a work-truck personality to complement its expected use. Some have speculated that it will offer multiple diesel and a single gasoline engine, but diesel should be the favored option since the pickup is likely to stay in key markets within reach of Nissan's production facility in Spain. Mercedes likely will target Australia, South America and Europe with this pickup.

With changing buying habits and product availability in the U.S. midsize pickup marketplace, we're likely to see more entries during the next five to 10 years. Already companies such as Ford (Ranger), VW (Amorak), Hyundai (Santa Cruz) and Ram (Rampage?) have said that if certain conditions can be met, it might be worth entering this growing pickup market.

On a related note, our spy shooters have sent us these images and are guessing they've captured either the new Mercedes-Benz pickup (rumored to be called the GLT), or the all-new Frontier, slated to debut next year; or it could be both. Here are the notes they sent us: 

Our photos show an early mule based on the Nissan Navara NP300, with could be the next Frontier we see, but with added fender flares. This is likely required due to a wider track.

We already know the Mercedes GLT will use the NP300 Navara chassis, but early reports indicate a totally unique exterior design, including a wider stance. That seems to indicate the test car in our photos is likely the Mercedes.

The Mercedes pickup will be mainly for customers in over seas markets. However, with assembly possible in Nissan’s Mexico plant, Mercedes executives have said they would consider selling the GLT in the U.S. market as well.

Expect Mercedes to offer four- and six-cylinder gasoline and diesel engines, a six-speed manual or seven-speed automatic connected to the 4MATIC all-wheel-drive.

Spy Photography by Chris Doane Automotive; Manufacturer image


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I guess this is news for those overseas.

A lot of speculation really.

right up big als alley

If Mercedes put their AMG 503hp 4.0L biturbo V8 in it they'd have one heck of a little truck. AWD would be sweet.

"The workhorse Mercedes Is likely to be called the X-Class or Z-Class"
"the new Mercedes-Benz pickup rumored to be called the GLT"

The story contradicts itself!?!?


ooh so excited to FINALLY experience the low quality of nissan combined with the high price of MB

I would definitely look at a Merc ute. Especially if it came with a 3 litre turbo diesel.

I'm seeing quite a few of the new Navara's on the road and had a close up look as well. I've still have yet to drive one and see how the new Renault diesel works.

I've read it is fantastic on fuel and I've also heard there are cylinder head issues with the new diesel.

I would also think the next Titan would have a lot of the new Navara in it as well to reduce weight.

This will sell for Daimler the way that the last generation Nissan Frontier lit things up for the Suzuki (the Equator?)

I remember how well that worked. What did they sell, about 14 of them?

BMW - Bring More Worries

@papa jim--Suzuki had much bigger issues than the Equator. Suzuki dealerships were dying off before they ever got the Equator.

This truck can carry more than its bigger diesel USA sibling with the initials XD.

"I would also think the next Titan would have a lot of the new Navara in it as well to reduce weight.'


Nissan like building FAT pickups for the USA.

-Suzuki had much bigger issues than the Equator.

@Jeff S apart from losing their auto-financing partner they were blowing the doors off.

Once their dealers were forced to finance the typical Suzuki North America customer through traditional banks, that was the end.

Product wise and dealer network? They were doing great. The decision to rebrand the Frontier was dumb, however. There was no niche to fill.

Nissan dealers were already doing it. Kind of like Isuzu competing with Chevy and
GMC dealers to sell S10s.

it may have a "Wide Stance" I have heard that before

@Lou: there is a difference between a "Nissan" or "Suzuki" and "Mercedes". Until you've PERSONALLY TESTED one of these trucks you can't really appreciate it.

If you are a Florida retiree like me, Nissan pickups will be your oyster.

Give Nissan some credit for offering a midsize NP300 Navara chassis at a time when the manufacturers are putting out their full-size trucks with more legroom.

@Jim - I wasn't slagging the Navara or Frontier or Mercedes. BARFo will be along soon enough to rebuke my comment.

I've owned a couple of small trucks. Each has good points and bad.

As far as Florida is concerned, I'm over 3,000 miles away.

Jim/papa jim, You don't need to personally test every truck to make a comment. And even if you could take one for a 5 minute test drive what would that prove?

Stop with your pro-Nissan bully tactics. I'll stick to the reviews of the Nissan Titan and they have been awful.

You don't like the Frontier because it is the same size as your precious "Colorado" that went first. The economy sucks and so do you everytime you starting talking about Nissan.

Badge engineering seems dumb. I hope it changes shape, I find Nissans to be the least attractive across the board.

@papa jim--The financing did hurt Suzuki but also their vehicles were just so so--not bad but not great. I actually liked the Equator's grill better than the Frontier. There were some great deals on Equators and a couple of times I came close to getting one but having bought the Isuzu it was not very old at the time and the miles are low. The customer reviews on the Equator were fairly high. Nissan makes a good truck.

@Lou_BC--I forgive you for your transgressions. Go and sin no more.

Hey BAFO - we have plenty of these new NP300 Navara's in Tahiti & got to test drive a buddies - I have to admit the ride was very smooth or almost too soft for a truck (coil springs all around like the RAM's). Otherwise the 3.2 turbo diesel in my 3 yr old Ranger felt much more powerful & torque - blew it out of water.

Most reviews I've read had similar conclusions & really surprised these brand new offerings from both Nissan & Toymaker's Hilux didn't try to outgun Ford's power plant...well maybe Mercedes will improve on it......

@Frank You should start watching Dr Phil. You will calm right down. Peace!

And test drive a new Nissan.

Really. Just take some time off work and tell your wife you're going fishing or getting a haircut--whatever.

Just do it.

The NP Navara 2WD and 4x4's are the lightest of our new midsizers. I think they are around 200kg lighter than a BT50 or Ranger for equivalent vehicles.

The Chassis could be adopted for the lighter Titan. The chassis can obviously handle over 400ftlb of torque in a 4x4.

If Nissan uses the cheaper lighter steel technology they are not required to spend billions to refit a factory to produce aluminium pickups.

I have read the complete article and links finally.

The premium Merc ute will be quite expensive for us. Some will sell, but how many I wouldn't even hazard to guess.

The midspec Merc would be the biggest seller, but that would have to be better than any other pickup on offer in Australia to get the above $60 000AUD price tag.

The "working" Merc ute is way to expensive, $55 000AUD can get you into a decent premium 4x4 dual cab ute.

We can step into a midspec 4x4 dual cab Euro/"Japanese"/US pickup from around $40 000AUD or $28 000USD.

This would make the top of the line Merc over $56 000USD. It had better be fantastic off road and not just like a blinged out Silverado station wagon Escalade.

Ford could easily produce a cheaper pickup than Merc, but I don't know if it will have the same on road dynamics as the Merc with the coil sprung assend.

It will be interesting to see what eventually comes out of this.

The biggest plus is the V6 diesel. It appears to be a good and powerful engine.

I would think the four pot diesel would be the 2.1 litre MB diesel as well.

Why would MB sell a Renault diesel if they have their own?

Big al just can NEVER quit expressing what is on his little (pea sized) brain. He truly needs his OWN web-site. There he could 'spew' any of his idiocracy he cares.

Posted by: Tundra Bob | Feb 10, 2016 10:50:13 AM

Of course he can. When you ask him any technical questions he shuts up right away because he is clueless. Unless he can find the answer in some online blog, he is done. He has yet to answer my question on the Nissan. Diesel for the clueless statement he made over there.

So come on BARFO, answer my question. What wears out on a new diesel engine that it loosens up enough to bring a 10% or greater returned FE and big increase in power due to less parasitic engine drag. You claim a new diesel engine is extremely tight when new and obviously has a huge amount of parasitic drag that reduces power and economy when new.

Or are you just vomiting stupid random numbers out again because you are clueless.

The story was based upon speculation that the Merc pickup shown may give design and engineering clues as to the next USA Frontier.

Since this story comes from Australia Big Al has more "credence" than us since that is his own homeland.

I do wonder if the increased price of the Merc version of the Frontier in Australia is because of; a.Merc tends to be regarded as a premier brand and/or b.Nissan is selling the truck to Merc for a high price and this is the only way Merc can make some money. I suspect the latter.

Lou BC,
I would suspect the Merc version will be based on the NP Navara significantly.

That is the chassis, suspension will be identical with some tweaking by Merc. The body will use the same sub frame as the Navara.

I would suspect everything else will be purely Merc. The interior, suspension tuning, engine drive train, skin on the body.

I do think the logical reason for Merc to choose the NP platform is for the suspension setup and vehicle size.

It would be much more expensive to "buy" a Ranger, Colorado, Toyota platfrom to work from, then redesign the suspension to suit Merc's requirements.

What factory would build a different pickup? With the Nissan all of Nissan/Renaults current tooling and factory line can be utilised.

The factory Merc will be using is in Spain, where Pathfinder used to be made alongside EU Navara's and our old D40 V6 diesel Navara's.

The decision to use Nissan is purely economic by Merc as Nissan is building the best pickup chassis/suspension globally for pickups.

I just hope Merc does build a better performing off roader than any other midsize pickup for the price they want, along with fantastic build quality and bling.

The rear end design is just as poor. Just look at how the exhaust system is routed underneath. Boy couldn't of wanted an exhaust yelling out " crush me, dent me,".

Then the spare is in a really dumb position as well.

But, most of these are just for crawling through shopping centres stating "look at me, I'm great".

Wunala Dundee

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