Like it or not, the luxo-crossover-coupe market continues to grow. We currently have the BMW X6 and the Acura ZDX gracing our market, but Mercedes-Benz has officially confirmed it plans on joining the fray with its own model, which will be built in the U.S.A.
Daimler AG just confirmed long-standing rumors that it will build an X6-fighter based on the M-Class SUV. According to a report by Automotive News, the new Benz will likely be called the MLC (we think GLS has a nicer ring to it), and production will start at the automaker’s U.S. plant near Tuscaloosa, Alabama, as early as 2015.
Details are scarce, but we expect Mercedes to abide by the same formula used on its competitors — meaning it should wear sleek sheet metal to attract younger buyers, who could care less about cargo space or head room for their rear passengers. Expect the MLC to get the same V6 and V8 engine choices offered in the M-Class. We can’t say if the Bluetec diesel will carry over as well, but there’s a good chance that the folks at AMG will work its magic on the MLC if Benz truly wants to take on the X6 M.
The MLC will be the fifth model added to the automaker’s U.S. factory, which currently churns out the M, R, and GL-Class. Last week, Daimler announced it will spend more than $2 billion at the plant to also revamp the plant to build the C-Class sedan by 2014.
Source: Automotive News (subscription required)