September 18, 2013
First project between Daimler and Nissan-Renault could have seen pickups wearing the tri-star
Nissan and Daimler are tying up their operations in many ways with lots of products in the pipeline. Both automakers benefiting from synergies: the new Infiniti Q30 uses the ercedes-Benz platform underpinning the A- and B-Class models; the next Smart range will rely on Renault’s Twingo for bones.
But, the first project, which would have seen the Nissan Titan and Frontier redesigned and sold alongside the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter, died on the table.
Road & Track has learned the Mercedes pickups could have started sale in 2016 after the new Titan hits dealer lots. The new trucks would have been identical under the skin, except for engines and slightly modified suspension. Also, Mercedes was planning to bring NVH levels down to those befitting the German brand’s expectations.
The project was stalled due to Nissan’s inability to allow the range of engines Mercedes desired. The products would have been sold globally and different engines would have been needed depending on local expectations and demands. Another problem arose when Mercedes desired potential hybrid and plugin hybrid packaging for the Frontier-based Merc truck.
Though Mercedes’ plans have now been shelved, it leaves the door open for Infiniti to pick up the pieces, which will surely take the opportunity.