Mercedes-Benz has updated the storied G-Class SUV line to amp up interior comfort and bring the adventure vehicle up to date for everyday use. Wisely, the designers also left plenty of iconic detail and performance untouched to keep off-road purists happy.
Starting its life as a bespoke off-road commission for the Shah of Iran in the 1970s, the Mercedes-Benz G-Class SUV wasn't officially available to U.S. customers until 2002. But for hardcore fans, the vehicle still holds undeniable retro appeal. Now, after its most exhaustive upgrade in decades, the stylishly unaerodynamic G-Class vehicles, in both the standard top-of-the-line G550 and the AMG-enhanced G63, perform on par with modern SUVs on the road and carry the latest in creature comforts, but are still unbeatable off-road and sport the quirky, classic safari design DNA that makes them a legit “G Wagon.”
G-Class interiors have been updated to fall in line with Mercedes-Benz luxury standards, but note the nods to the true nature of the SUV via the studded pedals and passenger-side grab bar. And of course, it just not a G-Wagon without a durable rear-mounted spare and cover.
Note that the AMG version sports a handcrafted 4-liter V-8 biturbo that puts out 577 horsepower and 627 footpounds of torque—0 to 60 mph is achieved in a respectable 4.4 seconds. AMG G53 version (shown), $147,500, G550 version, $124,500, mbusa.cdom