Earlier this year, Mercedes threw the covers off its new G-Class. Or G-Wagen as we still like to call it. Not that you’d have noticed as it looks pretty much exactly the same as the old one. Just a little softer. Like it’d been left in the wind and eroded in the hands of time. But don’t judge a car by its new headlights. The new one is the most significant overhaul the boxy icon has had in over three decades.
Only five parts have been carried over from the old one. They’re not particularly significant, either, the list including the spare wheel cover, the headlight washer nozzles, sun visors, that push button on the door handles and the tow bar. But, the new G-Class hasn’t forgotten its roots. It still uses a traditional ladder-frame chassis, three differential locks and low-range gear reduction. The ground clearance is better than before, improving the G’s already formidable wading depth and approach and departure angles. Only now, should you prod the right drive select buttons, there’s a bit of modern tech to help soak up tough terrain and simplify any sticky situations without the use of sand paddles and swear words.
Inside, the new G has had a complete makeover bringing it bang up to date with the rest of Merc’s sublime and luxuriously techy cabins. More than that, the G is up to 170kg lighter than before, but a bit bigger – 53mm longer and 121mm wider – which has apparently benefited interior space, always a bugbear in the somewhat inverse-Tardis old car. Before the new one comes in however, we thought we’d take out the current one to remind ourselves why there ain’t nothin’ but a G thang, baby.