Mercedes-Benz is now putting the finishing touches on the first real new Class G from the distinctive square-jawed all-terrain, the first happened in 1979.
The new 4×4 will be unveiled to the public at the Detroit motor show in January and on sale in the UK in the spring.
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The new G-Class has adopted an all-new contemporary design of the aluminium construction. The move, Mercedes officials say, contributes to a 160kg weight reduction to vacuum more now, especially the steel-body model, while providing a 30% increase in torsional rigidity.
The military-grade all-terrain also receives a widened chassis with new front suspension as well as adjustable damping. A new electrical architecture supports a wide range of driver assistance systems and there is also a spacious inside with infotainment and communication features, insiders say, will secure the future of the G-Class in the second half of the next decade.
A myriad of changes, hidden under the traditionally vertical style, are claimed to stimulate the performance on the road. The G-Class is also in line to receive a new range of engines. These include the last evolution of the engine turbo 4.0-litre V8 petrol unit and the parent company of Mercedes-Benz new 2.9-litre in-line six-cylinder diesel engine, in combination with a new nine-speed automatic gearbox.
The new G-Class is the design of true, in the look of today 38-year-old model with a boxy appearance that, despite a 20mm increase in width, claimed to have the same 0.54 drag coefficient of today in the car.
The traditional style is designed to provide maximum off-road functionality. The Coach was told of the nominal value of fording depth of this new model has increased by up to 100 mm. The approach, departure and ramp angles are said to have been improved, too, if only marginally, on the outgoing model. Buyers can also equip the model 2018 with a 360deg off-road camera for the safety of manoeuvring in tight off-road conditions.
Although early reports have suggested the new G-Class is in line to adopt a monocoque construction, the Coach can confirm that it retains the tried and trusted ladder-frame chassis of its predecessor, albeit in highly modified form.
Mercedes engineering sources say that this construction provides the G-Class with new levels of crash integrity, better on-road refinement and, in combination with the new aluminum body of the structure, a significantly lower weight. Nothing is official yet, but the G500 model expected to be launched at the Detroit motor show in January, is said to weigh nearly 2435kg â€” down from the existing G500 is 2595kg. The ladder-frame chassis also helps to preserve the versatile G-Class 3500kg towing capacity.
As well as the object of the habit on the road in the process of development, the new G-Class has been tested in Mercedesâ€™ punishing off-road course in SchÃ¶ckl, Austria.
A new interior, which is claimed to provide a better fit. A source revealed that the rear leg room has increased by 150 mm in standard wheelbase guise. The luggage capacity is also shown to extend beyond the outgoing model of the’487 litres.
The vertical of the dashboard today, the G-Class has been heavily revised, with a new digital instrument similar to the one found in the E-Class. For the entertainment features, the G-Class is claimed to be at the same level as the recent update of the S-Class. Included are many of Merc’s latest wizard systems, including Attention Assist, which warns the driver when they begin to show signs of drowsiness or inattention.
There’s also Active Lane Keeping Assist, and the Pre-Safe system, which activates preventive occupant protection measures if the car detects a collision is imminent.
The new G-Class will be sold from the start with an AMG-developed 4.0-litre V8 turbo petrol engine in two states of tune. In the G500, it has 415bhp and Â£ 450 ft. It also gets a cylinder deactivation device that enables it to operate on four cylinders under part-throttle loads in the city driving conditions.
In addition to highly tuned G63, it packs 603bhp and 627lb ft, replacing the current 5.5-litre turbo V8, which delivers 563bhp and 560lb ft.
The new engines are combined with a nine-speed automatic gearbox and a heavy-duty four-wheel-drive system with three locking differentials and low-range gearing.
A G400d model is scheduled to join the line-up no later than 2018. It will run Mercedes ‘ new OM656 in-line six-cylinder diesel engine and developing 335bhp and 516lb ft. Other units, including a 3.0-litre in-line six – cylinder turbo petrol with a starter/generator mild hybrid, to follow.
Underlying the 2018 G-Class is a new suspension system. It adopts a new independent front end and revised geometry at the rear, both offering added levels of wheel travel and axle articulation on the older model. In a move that is claimed to provide the model next year with more of comfort, it receives adaptive damping control too.
Another important change is the adoption of a new system of management. The recirculating ball system, which dates back to 1979, G-Wagen, has been replaced by a contemporary electro-mechanical, rack and pinion arrangement, which is expected to bring a greater degree of accuracy.
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