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Round-Up: Mercedes X-Class axed, Ian Hill retires, Van values down slightly

Mercedes axes X-Class pick-up

Mercedes X Class 13

Mercedes-Benz Vans has ended production of the Nissan Navara-based X-Class pick-up due to a lack of demand.

Just 15,300 models were sold last year and the vehicle was introduced in 2017. It used the Navara’s underpinnings and was built alongside the Nissan pick-up in Barcelona.

In a statement, Mercedes said: “It has been decided that from the end of May 2020, we will no longer produce this relatively young model. In our global product portfolio, the X-Class is a niche product which plays a great role in a few markets, including Australia and South Africa.”

Ian Hill retires

Ian Hill (front, centre) flanked by Peter Smith and Lisa Temperton with colleagues, family, friends and customers.

Ian Hill, managing director of Activa Contracts, has retired after being involved in the automotive industry for nearly 60 years.

He launched Activa Contracts in 2000 with five members of staff and no premises and has overseen the company’s growth to its current position of more than 50 employees, a head office in Milton Keynes, and being a vital part of Arnold Clark Finance, contributing 7,000 vehicles to the risk fleet with a further 1,200 company cars and vans under fleet management, the firm said.

“I know that I leave Activa Contracts in a great place with a dynamic team geared up to tackle future challenges – plug-in company cars and vans and future fuels, autonomous vehicles and employee mobility – being the three issues at the forefront of the fleet industry as a new decade starts,”  he said.

Van values down slightly

Remarketing giant BCA has reported a bounce-back in fleet and lease-sourced light commercial vehicles

There was another strong month of sales for used vans in December with the average price dipping by £80 to £7,293, remarketing giant BCA said.

It put this down to a changing model mix driven by an increased percentage of dealer part-exchange vehicles sold, however, it added that ex-fleet & lease values were the second highest recorded during the year and nearly-new values climbed significantly to their highest point in 2019.

Year-on-year, values were down by just £22 despite both age and mileage rising over the period, by two months and over 3,000 miles respectively, BCA added.