Mercedes-AMG G 63

Mercedes-AMG G 63, front
Mercedes-AMG G 63, front
Mercedes-AMG G 63, side
Mercedes-AMG G 63, side
Mercedes-AMG G 63, side
Mercedes-AMG G 63, rear
Mercedes-AMG G 63, rear
Mercedes-AMG G 63, rear
Mercedes-AMG G 63, rear
Mercedes-AMG G 63, exhaust
Mercedes-AMG G 63, interior
Mercedes-AMG G 63, interior
Mercedes-AMG G 63, front
Mercedes-AMG G 63, front
Mercedes-AMG G 63, front

IT'S nigh on impossible to summarise the Mercedes-AMG G 63.

For starters it's 2.5-tonnes of pure muscle that has legendary off-roading ability.

But somehow it can sprint from 0-62mph in just 4.5 seconds, while setting you back a mere £141,000.

So difficult to know where to start really.

Although the vehicle's history dates back to the 1970s in various guises often designed for military use, the passenger G-Class, or as it's more affectionately known, G-Wagon appeared almost four decades ago.

It remained virtually unchanged until 2018 when the second generation model was launched.

While the exterior looks have been updated slightly, the five-door vehicle still maintains all its traditional iconic design cues such as the box-like silhouette, a full-sized spare wheel on the rear door with an aluminium cover, external door hinges, round headlamps and the rippled bonnet.

But explore beneath the surface and it's all new. Mercedes has replaced the outgoing 5.5-litre V8 engine with a brand new AMG 4.0-litre V8 biturbo petrol unit that generates 585hp and delivers a maximum torque of 850Nm.

And with that mighty engine powering the AMG G 63, the performance stats cannot fail to impress with that blisteringly quick 0-62mph sprint time and a top speed of 137mph.

Our car featured an additional AMG Drivers Package that increased the maximum speed to an electronically-limited 149mph.

If it's a quiet, unassuming existence you're seeking, then the G-Wagon is not the car for you. It's big, bold and brutal with go-anywhere off-road capabilities.

It's also quite a noisy beast with the quad exhausts split into pairs and emerging from beneath the rear doors.

Yet, move inside, or rather climb on board, and there is a level of elegance and charm within the vehicle that belies its rugged exterior styling, along with a wealth of on-board technology.

For example, there is the finest Nappa leather upholstery and powered seats with memory settings, 64-colour ambient lighting, an electric sliding sunroof, black flamed open-pore ash wood trim, a heated steering wheel and heated rear seats.

Techno treats are plentiful with Mercedes' COMAND Online navigation system, a 12.3-inch media display and 12.3-inch instrument display where the likes of smartphone integration via Apple CarPlay or Android Auto is discovered.

A 15-speaker Burmester sound system is guaranteed to drown out any road surface or engine noise and when you reach your destination in the dark, open the door to see the giant Mercedes three-pointed star lighting up the pavement. It's more like a puddle floodlight than puddle lamp.

Comfort levels within the vehicle are deceptively good, and the ride and handling have certainly been refined in the latest model.

Despite resembling a giant container on wheels with a high centre of gravity, the G-Wagon drivesreally well.

Admittedly tight bends need to be given a degree of respect, but the rear-biased all-wheel drive system keeps the car well planted. And when the open road presents itself the driver can take complete control of the gear changes by switching across to Manual and using the steering wheel mounted paddles.

There are different driving modes to choose from with Sport and Sport+ really living up the handling, but the Comfort setting also delivers a rewarding performance with electrifying acceleration and all the power you could possibly wish for. Admittedly it's no hatchback, but they can't tow a 3.5-tonne horse-box.

The latest G-Wagon has had a bit of a growth spurt and also shed some weight. This means there is more space for occupants within the car, the performance stats have improved and it's even more economical to run.

On that front though, expect hefty bills at the garage. I refuelled just once during my loan in which I clocked up 650 miles. I gave up with a bill of £102.50 showing on the pump and plenty more space in the tank.

For the record, the fuel tank takes 100 litres to fill - and that's 22 gallons.

The official combined fuel economy figure for the AMG G 63 is 21.4mpg although that is when the vehicle is driven relatively conservatively. Drive it hard or in Sport or Sport+ driving modes and the readout on the TFT display will often drop below 10mpg.

However, anyone splashing out £143,305 (£145,755 with a few options) to buy the AMG G 63 will have few concerns regarding the running costs. And the first year VED charge of £2,070 along with the five year £310 surcharge for cars costing more than £40k are not likely to act as a deterrents either.

FAST FACTS

Mercedes-AMG G 63

Price: £143,305

Mechanical: 585ps, 3,982cc, 8cyl petrol engine driving four wheels via 9-speed automatic gearbox

Max Speed: 149mph

0-62mph: 4.5 seconds

Combined MPG: 21.4

Insurance Group: 50

C02 emissions: 299g/km

Bik rating: 37%

Warranty: 3yrs/unlimited miles

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