World Car Gist #update
Since the 2019 Mercedes G-Class has been on the rave for the past few weeks just after pictures of it were released long before its official debut at the Detroit Auto Show about 2 days ago, it would be worthy to go back in time and bring to the fore some things you didn’t know about the legendary vehicle.
- The first Mercedes Benz G-Class was produced in the year 1979 in Graz, Austria which remains one of its assembly plants till date.
- The then Shah of Iran who was a key shareholder at Daimler solely suggested to the German Automaker, Mercedes to make an SUV that was luxurious and street worthy hence the G-Wagen.
- Mercedes partnered with Steyr-Daimler-Puch to create the G-Wagen for both civilian and military use. Its use however navigated majorly to the military path where it has seen 63 military services in its lifetime.
- At the commissioning, the Vehicle was called Mercedes GlandeWagen (G-Wagen) which is German for Cross country Vehicle. It was called that until 1988 when the prior name was widely substituted in some markets for G-Class.
- It was made in either a short (2400mm) or long (2850mm) wheelbase. The short were majorly 2-door while the long were 4-door. Both could however come in windowless 2-door vans called Kastenwagen.
- Demands came in down the line to make the military, boxy, rugged old soldier more civilian worthy which is why saloon-car refinements began to be introduced from 1981. First it got air conditioning, auto box, more comfortable seats, auxiliary heating and wider tyres. In subsequent years upto 1987, it got electric windows, luggage covers and a power antenna.
- To celebrate its 10th anniversary in 1989, in came permanent four wheel drive, wood trim, top-spec interior, three electronically locking differentials and anti-lock braking system.
- The post 90’s ‘G’ were highly luxurious but were not very quick. This brought about a significant change after it’s production was handed over to AMG in 2004. Finetunes like 5.4-litre supercharged V8, 5.5-litre twin-turbo V8 up until the latest offering – a 6.0-litre twin-turbo V12, which produces 612hp and 737lb ft. were squeezed in from then.
Sticking stiffly to its antiqued boxy look, ruggedness, off-road abilities, and now exquisite interior is a major reason why the ‘G’ has remained alive and an all time darling of oligarchs, old-school car enthusiasts, military personas and other individuals of timber and caliber.
…Stronger than time.
…2019 G-Class- 39 years and counting.