Mercedes-Benz G-Class £94,000

Shooting Times & Country|July 01, 2020

Mercedes-Benz G-Class £94,000
It may be the glitzy 4x4 choice of oligarchs and footballers, but Ed Coles relishes the opportunity to put Stuttgart’s old stager to the test off-road
Ed Coles

Mercedes launched the G-Class — also known as the G-Wagen — in 1979, and it’s the longest-running line out of Stuttgart.

Synonymous with oligarchs and footballers, the G-Wagen is a ‘glitzy’ 4x4, but is there a capable vehicle beneath? Firstly, whatever you do, don’t scratch it or kerb it. Its silhouette is true to its heritage, easily definable as a G-Wagen. We are testing a 350d AMG Line, which in G-Wagen terms is middle of the road.

Walking around it, it doesn’t look over the top, despite the 20in wheels. It is 121mm wider and 53mm longer than the previous version. It’s not winning any awards for aerodynamics, but I’m fond of the boxy 1980s shape, which doesn’t diminish its style — a bit military chic. The ‘designo mystic blue’ paintwork is enhanced with just enough chrome trim to add to the drama.

There is a nostalgic heavy clunk from the central locking and as the automatic mirrors unfold, a Batmanstyle Mercedes badge is projected onto the floor.

Opening the boot, you feel the robustness of the G-Class and there’s a reasonably sized space — not overly deep, but tall. Plenty of room for luggage and four-legged companions. To use the Shooting Times unit of measurement, around eight-plus full bags of wheat. With the seats down, we could probably double that.

Underneath, there are no worries with ground clearance at the back —241mm to be precise, which is plenty to avoid clobbering the rigid rear axle and its adjoining suspension.

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July 01, 2020