Mercedes G-class returns to the UKHuge military-style 4x4 back after a decade away

30 April 2010

Mercedes G-Class

Massive Mercedes G-Class is back in the UK after a decade's absence

After a decade’s absence Mercedes has decided to start selling its G-class off-roader in the UK once again. Budget buyers need not apply…

The Mercedes-Benz G-class is a kind of posh Land Rover Defender. Originally conceived as a military vehicle it offers extraordinarily solid build quality and exceptional off-roading ability. It’s even won the Paris-Dakar rally – in 1983.

Hand-built Mercedes

After celebrating its 30th anniversary last year, the G-class returns to the UK in right-hand-drive form after a 10-year absence – and you’ll be hard pressed to spot any major visual changes.

Mercedes G-class

The monster 4x4 is a bit of a motoring relic, but it's still popular

Hand-built in small numbers, the G-class is Mercedes’ longest-lived passenger production vehicle. The demand amongst wealthy customers looking for a more exclusive luxury SUV clearly remains high in spite of the inevitable age-related compromises in construction techniques, efficiency and aerodynamics.

Just three variants will be made available to UK buyers when the G-Wagen (as it's known in Germany) returns this autumn.

From turbodiesel V6 to supercharged petrol V8

Entry-level is the commercial G300 CDI V6 turbodiesel variant, designed to carry workers and equipment to inhospitable areas.

Mercedes G-class

Passenger versions of the G-class will cost close to £80,000

This is joined by two luxury passenger versions, the G350 CDI V6 turbodiesel, and the G55 AMG fitted with a supercharged high-performance V8.

The G55 has 493bhp, and can propel the brick-like G-class from 0-62mph in just 5.5 seconds. However, even the G350 CDI, with its mere 218bhp, can only manage 25.7mpg. This is a car for neither the feint of heart nor the slight of wallet.

Underlining this point, the commercial G300 CDI starts at £57,975. the G350 CDI costs from £79,975 and the G55 AMG demands an incredible £114,975.

Full-time four-wheel drive and luxury kit

The 'G' features a comprehensively effective four-wheel-drive system with stability control, 100% locking differentials, high- and low-ratio gearing – all ensuring serious off-road performance.

In addition to this, the passenger versions include automatic climate control, automatic gearbox, bi-xenon headlamps, heated seats, extensive leather upholstery, rear parking sensors and a Harman Kardon stereo.

The Mercedes G-class is undoubtedly something of a motoring anachronism. But the customer demand is apparently there…


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