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Tuesday, May 28, 2024

The Mercedes G-Wagen, the final word off-road standing image, goes electrical

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For many who desire to grind gravel and certain over boulders whereas surrounded by luxurious napa leather-based — and might’t think about emitting even a single molecule of carbon dioxide whereas doing so — the fully electric Mercedes G-Wagen is for you.

The very costly, boxy standing image is now even standing symbol-ier due to a 116 kWh battery and all-electric drive prepare, full with 4 individually managed motors with a most complete output of 432 kW — or the equal of about 580 horsepower — and a max torque 1,164 Newton-meters.

“I lately joked that it’s just like the Birkin bag of Mercedes,” Mercedes-Benz CEO Ola Källenius said on the Decoder podcast back in 2022. “All people needs one, and the ready time is basically lengthy. It might even be probably the most fascinating automotive in our portfolio.”

However with nice energy comes nice expense. The Mercedes-Benz G 580 with EQ expertise (an ungainly identify for an unique EV, however I’ll enable it) will begin at €142,621.50 ($152,184.27), whereas the primary version trim goes for €192,524.15 ($205,432.89). That’s a premium over the gas models, which generally begin at round $143,000. At launch, the Version One trim might be unique to the US market and can arrive at dealerships within the second half of 2024.

The G 580, or EQG if you’ll, might be constructed on a ladder body idea, which the automaker says is key to its off-roading. Like its gas-powered equivalents, the ladder body consists of an unbiased entrance suspension with double wishbones, in addition to a newly developed inflexible rear axle for a decrease heart of gravity. The battery will propel the EQG to an estimated 473 km (293 miles) on the WLTP normal, which can doubtless be even lowered when primarily based on the much less optimistic EPA score.

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The electrical G-Wagen will include a complete caravan of nifty circus tips, together with a tank flip (which Mercedes has branded its G-Flip) for sharper, on-axis rotations. G-Flip will work on free, unpaved roads and trails and solely at low speeds. And a three-speed clever off-road crawl operate will maintain the electrical SUV on the optimum velocity whereas touring over uneven surfaces. And Mercedes boasts that the EQG will stay steady on slopes as much as 35 levels and has a most fording depth of 850 millimeters (33 inches).

After all, all that off-roading requires further safety for the battery, which is saved within the flooring of the car for that low heart of gravity. Each grain of gravel is a possible hazard if you’re driving round with a two-tiered lithium-ion battery with 216 cells put in in 12 cell modules between three cooling ranges underneath your toes.

The underbody skid plate, which is exclusive to the electrical G-Class, is produced from “an clever materials combine” that features carbon, which “will increase rigidity in comparison with options produced from metal or aluminum,” the corporate says. It additionally ensures long-lasting corrosion safety and saves weight. The plate is 26 millimeters thick, weighs 57.6 kilograms, and is connected to the ladder body with greater than 50 metal screws.  

And in what’s turning into an increasingly normal thing to do with new EVs, Mercedes has determined to present its electrical G-Wagen a faux engine noise, branded right here as G-Roar. Impressed by the fuel lineup’s “emotional V8 sounds,” the G-Roar will use exterior audio system to emit a sound that simulates the “deep bass and sonorous tones” of its fuel-sipping sibling. The sounds can change when switching between drive modes: Consolation produces a extra restrained faux engine noise, whereas Sport will hit you proper within the emotions (Mercedes additionally describes it as “emotional”).

Even with an emphasis on off-roading over efficiency, the G 580 with EQ expertise (nope, nonetheless ungainly, going again to EQG) isn’t any slouch on the pavement. The electrical SUV can speed up from 0 to 100 km/h in 4.7 seconds and might be electronically restricted to a most velocity of 180 km/h (or 112 mph).

The outside is almost an identical to the present mannequin 12 months of gas-fueled G-Wagens. You do get illuminated accents on the grille, which additionally might be changed with an optionally available blacked-out entrance panel. The bonnet is barely raised, and the rear wheel wells embrace air curtains for higher aerodynamic efficiency. There’s additionally a brand new A-pillar cladding and a spoiler lip on the roof. However in any other case, it will be troublesome to pick the EV in an all-G-Class lineup.

A rear-mounted design field appears very best for a spare tire, however open it up and — shock! — it’s charging cables and different optionally available goodies, like snow chains. After all, if you wish to be a traditionalist, you may completely stow your spare tire in there. No judgment.

Inside, the electrical G-Wagen is sticking to what works, holding the passenger seize bar and surrounding every part with carbon fiber. There are many bodily buttons, and the air vents are delightfully tactile and round. The pedals are lined in raised rivets as a result of, you already know, off-road. And the 12.3-inch digital show runs on Mercedes’ well-received MBUX infotainment system — but additionally helps Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Rear-seat passengers can get pleasure from a wide range of media on their private 11.6-inch touchscreens which are mounted on the again of the entrance seats. Content material might be moved from the rear to the entrance show — however video watching and web searching are reserved for parked mode solely.

The electrical G-Wagen first emerged in concept form back in 2021 after which once more in 2022, regardless of the corporate’s lack of readability round manufacturing plans. (To compensate, Mercedes launched a ridiculously excessive idea promotional video set in a Seventies-era area opera with aliens.)

However since then, there have been quite a lot of electrical off-roaders, together with the Ford F-150 Lightning, Chevy Silverado EV, Hummer EV, and Rivian R1T and R1S. Whether or not any of those autos truly spend a single second doing actual off-road stuff — versus choosing up grass fertilizer at The Residence Depot — is solely up for debate. The electrical G-Wagen will doubtless be no completely different, because the boxy SUV has at all times been seen extra regularly within the driveways of the über wealthy than on the paths in Moab.

Nonetheless, the EQG is an indication that whereas it has pulled back some of its early predictions about electrification, Mercedes nonetheless understands that even its tremendous luxurious standing symbols might want to go electrical.



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