Mercedes-Benz R-Class withdrawn from the UK market

Published 27 September 2013

The Mercedes-Benz R-Class has been withdrawn from the UK market. The car, which appeared in concept form as the Vision in 2002 went on sale in the UK in 2005, and after initially promising sales (especially to the chauffeur-drive market), has tailed off in recent years - leading to its demise.

The super-sized MPV-cum-4x4 crossover with room for seven has become an increasingly niche choice in a luxury sector that continues to be dominated by more conventionbal saloons, as epitomised by the Mercedes-Benz S-Class or Audi A8.

In his 2006 review, Honest John amusingly summarised: 'Another day, another massive Mercedes-Benz. The RL is actually 69mm (2.7 inches) longer than the gargantuan GL Class. However, instead of seven seats, the car is built around six supersize Americans. Everyone gets an individual seat and room to stretch their legs, though the rearmost are only good for people less than seven feet tall and weighing under 20 stone.'

Apart from the G-Wagen, the R-Class is the oldest model in Mercedes-Benz's line-up, having been launched in 2005. The range was expanded in 2007, and more comprehensively facelifted in 2010, to feature new front-end styling (above). A Mercedes-Benz spokesman told us this was 'planned obselescence', and another said: 'I can confirm that production of the R-Class is now restricted to the Chinese market. This will also cease soon.'

The fact that the R-Class has not been replaced - in an era that Mercedes-Benz is keen to expand its model protfolio into a new market sectors - speaks volumes for the R-Class' lack of popularity.

Mercedes -Benz R-Klasse (2)

Comments

dr    on 30 September 2013

one of the ugliest mercs ever made !

Boatman    on 30 September 2013

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I have just traded in a 2012 E 250 Class Estate, a really lovely car, for this 'ugly' Merc, an R350 Sport CDI, also 2012, because in the business I am in of supplying some of my customers instantly with products, it makes a superb posh van, and over the past couple of days I have enjoyed wafting along in an elevated position, with a very solid feel all around, I have been after one with the right spec for a couple of years, and this one suddenly appeared, so I grabbed it. A fabulous car, and fills my needs, although I can see why it has missed the mark for most people, hence its forthcoming demise...

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