From the golden days of motoring until 2018, the Mercedes G-Class remained the same rugged all-terrain vehicle beneath the skin. With the second-gen, which is also the latest, the three-pointed star brand has retained the iconic looks, albeit refining everything else, from the chassis and safety features to the powertrain lineup and comfort and technology amenities.
A proper daily that can take on many different tasks, the latest Mercedes-Benz G-Class is a dream machine. Its performance-oriented derivative, the Mercedes-AMG G 63, is even more potent courtesy of the Affalterbach brand’s ubiquitous 4.0-liter bi-turbo V8.
Shared with many other modern-day vehicles made by Mercedes-AMG, it develops 577 hp (585ps/430 kW) in the 4×4. The torque stands at 627 pound-feet (850 Nm), and it uses a nine-speed automatic transmission and four-wheel drive. The AMG G-Class weighs around two and a half tons (~5,500 pounds), and despite that and the brick-shaped design, it is very agile. Four and a half seconds after taking off, the digital speedometer will indicate 62 mph (100 kph), and on a long straight, it will run out of breath at 137 mph or 220 kph.
Purists will always be sad that the second-gen G 63 isn’t available with a V12. The downgrade was necessary to keep the carbon dioxide emissions in check. And not only it won’t be graced by a twelve-banger anymore, but it will also eventually drop the V8 heading toward the inevitable electric future. Mercedes is currently refining the EQG, which will be the zero-emission G-Class, and we’ve seen several testers in the open, retaining the overall styling of the SUV, and moving in complete quietness, aided by its four electric motors whose output and thrust remain secret for now.
Mind you, while neither Benz nor AMG will ever put a V12 under the hood of the modern-day G-Class/G 63, a tuner has. The model is called the G V12 900, and the model broke cover nearly four years ago at the 2019 Frankfurt Motor Show. Limited to only ten copies, it’s the work of Brabus, and the engine came from the old S 600 L. The displacement was increased from 6.0 to 6.3 liters, and after the renowned tuner had its way with the internals, it ended up producing 900 metric horses – hence the 900 in its name. This translates to 887 bhp or 662 kW. The torque produced by the new mill is 1,106 lb-ft (1,500 Nm), and it was limited to 885 lb-ft (1,200 Nm) to preserve the transmission.
Before being fiddled with by Brabus, the V12 was good for 523 hp (530 ps/390 kW). It was less powerful than the V8 powering the latest G 63. So, how much quicker do you think the G V12 900 is compared to the stock one? Seven-tenths, according to Brabus. It needs only 3.8 seconds to hit 62 mph (100 kph) from a standstill. This allowed the tuner to call it “the world’s most powerful twelve-cylinder SUV” back then, and that’s no longer valid, as we now have machines such as the Ferrari Purosangue that are way punchier, not to mention more agile. Flat-out, it can do 174 mph (280 kph) or 25 mph (40 kph) more than the G 63 when equipped with the AMG Driver’s Pack, which is an optional extra.
Care to blow a jaw-dropping sum of money on your very own Brabus G V12 900? You’re in luck because the pictured one is for sale. It has just under 1,000 km (620 miles) under its belt, a first registration dating back to March 2022, and is in top-notch condition. The Hollmann listing reveals many options, and the wide body kit with the bulging hood and roof-mounted spoiler, finished in black, is visible in the images accompanying the ad. It has a lot of carbon fiber inside and out, rides on 24-inch wheels, and the interior, which is bathed in ambient lighting, has lots of plush leather. The premium upholstery was even added to the floors and the cargo space behind the seats, and there is a hint of Brabus here and there so that you don’t forget the special nature of this ultra-punchy G-Wagen.
We still haven’t told you how much this car, which started life as a Mercedes-AMG G 63, costs, and you may want to sit down for this one, as it is very expensive. The ad shows a buy-it-now price of €695,000 or $743,580 at today’s exchange rates. You could buy no less than four brand-new G 63 SUVs for that kind of money in the U.S. of A., where it starts at $179,000. It’s definitely worth every penny to the right collector, and considering the amount of work that went into it, we think it will sell for the asking sum. But would you buy it?