Mercedes-Benz focuses largely on road-going manners with its M-Class SUV, but the G-Class is a hard-core off-road machine that comfortably seats five people. Competitors include the Hummer H2 and Land Rover Range Rover.
New for 2011
There are no major changes, but "mbrace," a new telematics system, replaces Tele Aid and has features such as locating a vehicle in a parking lot and remotely locking and unlocking doors with an iPhone or BlackBerry.
This distinctive SUV's strictly utilitarian appearance is somewhat softened by body-colored bumpers and rocker panels, plus a stainless steel spare-tire cover.
- New 18-inch twin five-spoke wheels (G550)
- Spare wheel cover
- Body-colored door handles
Leather upholstery is complemented by burl walnut or maple wood trim. Standard equipment includes automatic climate control, power windows and locks, DVD navigation, power front seats with three-position memory, and rear parking assistance.
- Standard "mbrace" telematics system
- Alcantara leather headliner in G55 AMG
- Rear-passenger reading lamps
- Optional HD radio and Sirius Real-Time Traffic
- Ambient lighting is standard
- Leather dashboard
Under the Hood
Depending on the model, there are two engine options that can be teamed with a five- or seven-speed automatic transmission.
- G550's V-8 produces 382 horsepower and 391 pounds-feet of torque and teams with a seven-speed automatic
- G55 AMG's supercharged V-8 makes 500 hp and is teamed with a five-speed automatic
A variety of safety features are standard, including:
- Antilock brakes with electronic brake-force distribution and brake assist
- Electronic stability system
- Side curtain airbags