Mercedes sold only 2,825 R Class “Grand Sport Tourer” models in the US last year, confirming once and for all that the eigenwillig CUV is a bonafide flop in this country. So much so that a GL-inspired restyling is already under development, possibly with a GL-inspired name as well: GLR.
Fixing the R’s gastropod styling won’t hurt, but the heavier association with Mercedes’ far more popular SUVs is probably just as important from a sales perspective. Mercedes once believed that the R-Class would birth an entirely new segment of “Grand Sport Tourer” vehicles. Instead it just proved that CUVs are the methadone of SUV addiction. In case enough consumers feel like going cold turkey, Mercedes’ new E-class wagon (on sale in the US eventually) has nearly 69 cubic feet of storage with the bench folded flat (headed to America later this year). [via Auto Motor und Sport print edition]