With a history going back to the 1970s, when it was originally developed as a military vehicle, the mighty Mercedes-Benz G-Class is now at its second generation, with a massive 2018 upgrade bringing the model into the 21st century.
The changes made then included a switch from an antique recirculating ball system to a modern rack-and-pinion steering system, while an independent front suspension replaced the rugged but less comfortable solid axle.
The slightly longer and much wider body is still using a separate chassis and is being hand-assembled in Graz, Austria, but the off-road and on-road technology features of its predecessors can’t hold a candle to the current G-Class.
With that in mind, 2018 was a long time ago and the current G-Class, while a lot more modern than its predecessors, is starting to get a little long in the tooth.
This is why Mercedes-Benz is currently testing a major mid-cycle facelift that should go official during the course of 2023, bringing the car to current but mostly upcoming standards.
You shouldn’t expect too many exterior differences on the facelifted G-Class, but there will be an all-new interior, while the engine lineup will be completely revamped.
As far as the interior goes, a redesigned center console will feature the acclaimed MBUX infotainment system, especially since the G-Wagen was the last current Mercedes-Benz model not to have it.
In preparation for the EQG, which is expected in 2024 as the first production electric G-Class, the entire engine lineup for next year’s G facelift is expected to offer some type of electrification, including the AMG version(s).
On the diesel side, the European version will benefit from a mild-hybrid 48-volt system on the G 350d and G 400d, with the so-called EQ-Boost bringing in an extra 22 PS and 250 Nm (184 lb-ft) of torque to supplement the inline-six.
A similar mild-hybrid system will augment the G 500, which is also expected to switch from the 4.0-liter V8 to a 3.0-liter inline-six to mirror the latest S-Class W223 lineup.
On the AMG front, the mighty G 63 should get the 612 PS (604 HP) version of 4.0-liter V8, supplemented by the aforementioned 22-PS EQ-Boost system, but it should be eventually accompanied by a G 63 E-Performance.
Just like the GT Four-door Coupe, the G 63 E-Performance will be an 800+ horsepower plug-in hybrid, with the twin-turbo V8 working alongside a 204 PS (201 HP) electric motor and a 6.1-KWh battery infused with Formula 1 technology.