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Mercedes dropped a truly wild G-Class concept in 2012. The shocking concept was called the Ener-G-Force. The idea was to make a G-Wagen that might exist in 2025 if the model could survive that long period. Of course, we know now that the G-Wagen isn’t showing any signs of slowing down. However, the G-Class is likely to see some big changes over the next couple of years. Could this G-Class concept play a role? 

Front end of the Ener-G-Force concpet car
2012 Ener-G-Force Concept | Mercedes-Benz

What is the next Mercedes G-Class?

The likelihood that the next G-Class will look like this moon buggy from 2012 is not great. However, the designers of this concept did get one part right. They assumed the G-Class would be smaller, which the CEO of Mercedes recently hinted might actually be the case. 

We could see a smaller G-Class as early as 2026. However, according to Motor1, it may not go by the name GLG and will likely be on different underpinnings. It won’t be on the old-school body-on-frame chassis anymore. Instead, it will rumors suggest that it will get Mercedes’ new MMA architecture which is set to debut in 2024. This same chassis will be used for the new C-class shooting brake, the GLA, and GLB. 

Will the next Mercedes G-Wagen be a proper SUV? 

A crazy futuristic Mercedes G-Wagen concept from 2012 called the Ener-G-Force
2012 Ener-G-Force Concept | Mercedes-Benz

Based on this underpinning change, it looks like the next-gen G-Wagen will morph into a unibody crossover, something much smaller than the one we have now; think Bronco Sport versus the Bronco. Motor1 points out that, like the Bronco Sport and the Bronco, the new smaller G-Wagen will probably get an efficiency boost but lose a significant bit of its legendary off-road prowess. This would likely be due to lower ride height and ground clearance. 

Christoph Starzynski, Mercedes-Benz vice president of development for electric drive, told Motor1 that this new MMA platform will be Merc’s first EV platform. However, it won’t be only for EVs. This could mean that the baby G-Wagen could be in either ICE or electric, maybe even both. 

What would an electric Mercedes G-Class look like? 

Overhead shot of the G-Class concpet
2012 Ener-G-Force Concept | Mercedes-Benz

With any luck, Mercedes would take some cues from the wild Mercedes G-Class concept from 2012. It has the mojo, for sure. As far as how the EV platform might work, Motor1 says that “MMA is being engineered to support 800V for fast charging, better batteries, and a new MB.OS software for cars that will be at least 4.5 meters (177 inches) long.”

Unlike the current G-Wagen, this baby G is more likely to fall into the “entry luxury” category, given the size. 

Are SUVs going away? 

It might feel like a silly question given the massive popularity of proper SUVs. However, the trend is moving toward more unibody crossovers. Sure, the Bronco is popular, but the Bronco Sport still exists alongside it. The crossovers are dotting our roads in mass these days. The proper body-on-frame trucks and SUVs are disappearing quickly. While this admittedly dated G-Wagen concept is extremely cool, the loss of the old-school G-Wagen will hurt. It’s just one more proper 4×4 heading out to pasture, and that pasture is getting pretty full.