Trucks & SUVs

Most 2020 Mercedes-Benz G550s Will Never See a Trail and That’s Alright

It’s true that many new off-roading cars have upscale interiors, but they’re not quite at the true luxury level. If you’ve ever wanted to ford rivers in a Mercedes-Benz, you could probably do it with the 2020 Mercedes-Benz G550. Roadshow gave it a high score for its cool design and off-roading capability.

However, its high price tag will definitely make it inaccessible to the average adventurer. This upgraded version of the G-Class SUV can cost almost $140,000. What else can potential buyers expect from this high-end off-roading SUV?

What makes the Mercedes-Benz G550s so great

This big wagon has a twin-turbo V8 under its hood, capable of making 416 hp and 450 lb-ft of torque. As expected, all-wheel-drive is standard, and it comes with plenty of extra off-roading essentials. It packs almost nine inches of suspension travel, 9.5 inches of ground clearance, and beefy all-season tires. There’s an allowance of 30 degrees for both approach and departure angles.

Not only can it climb a small incline, but the Mercedes-Benz G550 is a quick daily driver as well. It can reach 60 mph in a brisk 5.6 seconds, which is above average for a vehicle its size. In terms of driving, Roadshow is pleased to report that it’s a much better experience than in previous G-Wagen generations.

Another big draw of the Mercedes-Benz G550 is its appearance. The front of the wagon looks downright menacing, especially with the available black paint package. While it may look like an old-school military transporter on the outside, the interior is a different story.

It has all the standard Benz accommodations, including Nappa leather and some stylish wood trim options. There’s also an available package that adds on special stitching and massaging power for the front seats.

The downsides of owning a Mercedes-Benz G550

Sure, it’s fancy, but the interior of the Mercedes-Benz G550 is where most of its problems lie. The infotainment system is noticeably outdated, at least by Benz standards. The center screen lacks any touch capability, nor can you control it with hand gestures or voice commands. 

However, Roadshow did acknowledge that it responds quickly and accurately to user inputs. The tester was also impressed that every safety feature available for the Mercedes-Benz G550 comes standard.

The infotainment system probably isn’t a dealbreaker for many drivers, but interior storage limitations might be. The G550 doesn’t have as much cargo space as your typical SUV and the outward-swinging storage gate isn’t always convenient. The center armrest cubbies and door pockets also can’t hold many small items.

Fortunately, reduced cargo capability also means there’s plenty of room for passengers to stretch their legs in the second row. The seats are also comfortable and supportive, making long trips a treat inside the G550. However, the G550 gets terrible gas mileage, so you may end up making more pit stops than desired. It’s rated for only 14 mpg combined city/highway.

Not the most practical option

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No matter which way you look at it, the Mercedes-Benz G550 is definitely a splurge. If the sticker price wasn’t outrageous enough, fancy options can make it cost nearly $160,000. Considering that the G550 has more capable rivals, this might not even be a good value.

This is especially true considering the extra money you’ll spend on fuel. However, as Roadshow points out, money probably isn’t a huge barrier anyway if you’re buying this wagon. This also means that the off-roading potential of the G550 will sadly be wasted.

Still, that doesn’t make the Mercedes-Benz G550 any less cool. While it may never see an actual trail, we’re sure many people would buy it anyway if they had the money.