Photographers that have captured spy pictures of the 2018 Mercedes-Benz G-Class say that while it hasn’t changed that much in appearance, it is visibly wider than the current model. Giveaway clues include a wider windscreen, bonnet and grille, and different doors.
While it is a reported 100mm wider and perhaps slightly longer, it is expected to lose about 200kg in weight, courtesy of more aluminum and high-strength steels in the body and chassis.
Its V8 and V12 petrol engines are likely to remain, but the current V6 diesel in the G350 d will be replaced by the Euro 6-compliant 3.0-litre six-cylinder in the E-Class.
The camouflaged G-Wagen pictured in snowfields on this page is said to be testing the E-Class engine, which delivers more power and torque than the unit in the existing G350 d. Another petrol engine option in some markets might be the new straight-six that Mercedes-Benz has confirmed is under testing.
The live front and rear axles with coil springs are expected to be carried over, although there has been talk of an independent front on the basis of Mercedes-AMG variants representing 50 per cent of all G-Wagen sales worldwide.
Unlikely, say those in the know. Expect solid coil-sprung front and rear axles with permanent four-wheel-drive, a low-range transfer case for the seven-speed gearbox, and three differential locks. Expect also the ride height to remain at 23.5cm.
Most changes will come inside with the latest Mercedes-Benz technology, including new driver-assist features, improved electro-hydraulic steering, and an advanced infotainment system.
The recirculating ball steering in the current G-Wagen was designed to avoid kickback off-road, but it is too heavy and slow for day-to-day use on-road, expecially with the instant throttle response of the G55 AMG variant.