G-Class classic gets 2012 update
RUGGED FOSSIL: The popular G-Wagon (or Gelandewagen) has remain largely unchanged since 1979. Image gallery
The original Merc off-roader has been given a significant upgrade for 2012 with state-of-the-art features to ensure it keeps up to speed with modern conveniences. It'll reach South Africa in the first quarter of 2013.
The G-Class gets a new interior and an instrument cluster and centre console that have been completely redesigned with new controls and exclusive trim options.
Keeping the driver updated is Mercedes-Benz’s Comand Online infotainment system with its large colour screen with which occupants can manage the navigation (with off-road functions) and internet access as well as the standard DVD changer and voice-controlled Linguatronic.
WELCOME BLAST FROM THE PAST
While most of the changes are visible inside the cabin, the G-Class also receives new diode daytime running lights and new housings for the exterior mirrors to blend in with the classic design that has remain largely unchanged since the 1970's.
The main attraction in the updated G-Class is the headlining G 63 AMG with a biturbo eight-cylinder engine that also does its bit for the environment – engine start/stop technology is standard.
AMG versions also feature an AMG grille with double louvres, plus new bumpers with large air intakes. Red brake callipers and 20" rims, available here for the first time, complement the emotive appeal of its exterior.
Safety equipment includes blind-spot coverage, Parktronic, and Distronic Plus adaptive cruise control. The G-Class’s stability control system has been completely overhauled and now has trailer stability and hold functions.
The G-Class range at launch in Europe includes the 155kW/540Nm diesel V6 powering the G350 Bluetec, 285kW/530Nm from the 5.5-litre V8 petrol engine in the G500, the new 400kW/760Nm G 63 AMG and the monster G 65 AMG with 450kW/1000Nm on tap from the V12 biturbo engine.
These engines are mated to Merc’s 7G-Tronic Plus automatic transmission.