They weren’t planning on it, but things seem to change within the company. The Mercedes-Benz X-Class might get a V8 engine after all, even though the variant wasn’t in the cards a year ago.
Back then, the Mercedes-Benz Vans global boss, Volker Mornhinweg, was saying that “the product is not right for V8.” Things are now bound to change and the German premium pick-up might thus become the first petrol V8-powered pick-up to hit the market. The Australian website Drive is opening up new perspectives, with a statement from the head of the X-Class engineering, Frank Schumacher. He said that the brand was not only ready to upgrade its V6 diesel to beat its main rival, the Volkswagen Amarok V6, but also to roll of a V8-powered premium pick-up.
“Yeah, there is always more [power to be extracted from its current engine to beat the Amarok] but that’s if the requirements come from a marketing point of view and if customers want more power – [it’s no different] with other platforms, we react to customers’ wishes,” Schumacher said for Drive. “If there will be wishes after the launch of the vehicle that says we need to have V8 then probably we will put in a V8, but that’s always a response on customer request.”
The company ruled out the idea of building an AMG X-Class, a variant that would surely get the company’s 4.0-liter V8 biturbo engine, used in the high-performance passenger cars. A de-tuned version of the same power unit finds room under the bonnet of various Mercedes models, such as the S560.
“With a V8 you get out of the mid-size pickup but if you look at the market correctly most of the market is focussed on the four-cylinder,” Schumacher explained.
The X-Class keeps away from the American market, where more popular, bigger and more potent pick-up trucks rule the market. Even with a V8 engine under the hood, the X-Class would still not make it to the US.