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Is Mercedes-Benz trying to compete with the new Ford Bronco Raptor and Ram TRX with its own high-speed, V8-powered dune jumping version of the Mercedes G-Wagon SUV? Mercedes-Benz has launched a new version of the Venerable G-Class with the new Mercedes-AMG G 63 4×4². Mercedes has taken the all-wheel drive goods from the 6×6 version made famous in the Jurassic World movies, including its interesting portal axles, and simply removed an axle. Then, added a new V8.

What is new in the G 500 4×4 Squared show car?

The new Mercedes-AMG G 63 4×4² is based on the show car that was previewed in a video that shows this Mercedes G-Wagon’s got a lot of “go,” with its show. The production version has different headlights and a different grille than the show car’s. The V8 makes 585 horsepower. The new 4×4 Squared features a new design for the Mercedes 4.0-liter V8 biturbo engine. Mercedes says it targeted lightweight with the new V8. So, instead of the turbos being mounted outside of the engine, they’re inside it. Benz calls it a “hot inside V.” The advantages, Mercedes says, are a more compact engine with more direct response and lower emissions. It also sounds better.

This Mercedes-AMG G 63 4×4² is built for off-roading

Mercedes-Benz G-Class in yellow
Mercedes G-500 4×4 Squared | Mercedes Benz

The regular – if you can call a $150,000 SUV regular – AMG is an off-roading animal. It was originally built to be a military vehicle, after all. But the new G 500 show car has a permanent all-new permanent all-wheel-drive and an off-road reduction in the transfer case. It also has three lockable differentials, front, rear, and middle. The G 500 show car also has increased ground clearance of 450 mm, and can ford water 1,000 mm deeper than the standard G-Class.

The production version will likely mirror those specs. We say likely because the information from the company on the new G-Class is accessed through the Mercedes Private Lounge. It’s not private, in that anyone can sign up for an account, but the site is in German. However, CNET says that 40 colors will be available and it will be a limited run.

The suspension has also been worked over to give it more of a Ford F-150 Raptor or RAM TRX-competing setup. The Mercedes-AMG G 63 4×4² has a new setup that allows the G-wagon to do some pretty incredible off-road ballets.

What’s a portal axle on the G 63 AMG?

The new G 63 is based on the 4x4 Squared show car
Mercedes-Benz AMG G 500 | Mercedes-Benz

Portal axles are not see-through axles. They’re a clever way to raise an off-road vehicle’s clearance under the control arms and raise the differentials much higher off the ground. When you see, for example, a lifted pickup truck you can see the pumpkin, or differential, in the middle of the wheels and that limits clearance. Portal axles use a series of gears that raise the entire vehicle from the axles up, pushing the pumpkins higher. They’re insanely expensive, but they can also save you from hanging up expensive parts on trail rocks.

What’s new for the G-wagon in 2023

a Mercedes G-Class in purple at an auto show
Mercedes-Benz G-Class G 63 AMG | Sjoerd van der Wal Getty Images

The grand G-Wagon is Mercedes-Benz’s most-lusted after SUV. The G-Wagon, or Gelandewagen, is the big, boxy, retro, off-road Mercedes that is also the most expensive SUV Mercedes makes, depending on the trim. For 2023. Though we’d love to see some of the G 500 show cars goodies on a new G-Class, the 2023 models will get the G550’s mild hybrid system and a version of the G63 V8 without the internal turbos. Most importantly, it will look more like the EQG all-electric version of the G-Class that is expected soon.


Why Are Mercedes-Benz G-Wagons so Expensive?