2019 Mercedes-AMG G63

 

Mercedes-Benz has taken off the wraps of the 2019 Mercedes-AMG G63 and here is what it exposes: a new 4.0L bi-turbo V8 engine, radical interior redesign, and swathes of refinement.

As with any iconic model, designers must tread lightly when it comes to a make-over.  In the case of the G-Wagen, it can be classified as more of a refinement than a reinvention.  However, the overall exterior refinement has maintained the styling elements that made the original so popular, and in doing so, hasn’t alienated the core fanbase, who, without a doubt is in love with the military design.

Mercedes-Benz still builds the new G63 with a ladder-type frame that aids in giving the model off-road credibility.  To reduce weight and increase performance, the doors, fenders, and hood are now made of aluminum.  For the first time ever, all of the fixed windows are glued into place, which further increases rigidity.  The use of high-strength steel coupled with reinforcements has made the frame, body shell, and body mounts up to 55% more torsionally rigid reducing vibrations and noise while aiding handling.  Furthermore, the frame, body shell, and vehicle floor have a special coating to withstand any exposure to water, salt, sand, or snow.

Gone is the previous G63’s 5.5L bi-turbo V8 which is now replaced with a 4.0L bi-turbo V8 producing 577 horsepower and 627 lb-ft of torque.  That is enough power to propel the G63 from 0-60 mph in just 4.4 seconds up to an electronically limited top-speed of 137 mph (or 149 mph with AMG drivers package).  To aid efficiency, the 4.0L engine gets an active cylinder deactivation system that deactivates four out of eight cylinders to decrease fuel consumption.  Mercedes-AMG says the system is seamless and undetectable.

The 4.0L engine is mated to an AMG SpeedShift TCT 9G transmission with specific software programs for lightning-quick shifts.  Even with numerous transmission modes, the G63 always starts in first gear for optimum performance.  The 4Matic all-wheel-drive system is rear-biased with a 40/60 torque split front to rear.  Low range is now a 2.93:1 reduction gear versus the previous models 2:1 for even greater climbing ability.  The low range can be activated at up to 22 mph while going from low range to high range can occur at up to 44 mph.  The model still has three locking differentials: front, center, and rear.

The exterior of the new G-Wagen is highlighted by slightly rounded touches to the hood, headlights, front bumper, and center grille opening.  Whereas the previous model had clearly defined shapes, the new model looks slightly softer.  It is still immediately and instantaneously recognizable, but the edginess is gone.  A new headlight design coupled with newly styled taillights are some of the most pronounced changes.  Styling elements such as side exhaust outlets and exterior-mounted spare tire remain.

The interior has been thoroughly modernized and designed with the same styling cues found in the new S and E-class models. An all-new dash layout with highly stylized round air vents sits at the top of the center console where three locking differential switches reside in between.  New seats, steering wheel, and speaker grilles add to the high-end look.  Analog gauges are standard with a dual 12.3″ digital instrument cluster as an option.  The interior has been increase in width, length, and height to offer more comfort to passengers.

No doubt, there will never be a shortage of buyers for such a unique vehicle, as it’s popularity over the last decades has not faded.  A new interior, exterior refinements, and additional power all make the new 2019 Mercedes-AMG G63 a very compelling off-roader.  Worldwide popularity for SUVs has allowed the G63 to greatly benefit.

Pricing and availability will be announced at the end of 2018.