Quick, name the Mercedes-Benz model that’s been in production for the longest amount of time.
Did you say the Unimog because if so, you are correct. That’s not what this blog post is about, though. It’s about the second-longest running Mercedes-Benz, the much more recognizable and consumer-beloved G-Class.
The Geländewagen is an old industry stalwart, instantly recognizable for the gratuitous use of right angles in its design. Mercedes-Benz has been building these trucks for 35 years, and despite introducing the more modern GL-Class in 2006, demand still exists for the mighty G-Wagen.
Its most unique feature is the three fully-locking differentials that help it conquer most any road and carry on reliably for miles. One German couple recently proved just how far one can go in a G-Wagen. Their 300GD – named Otto – carried them to almost two hundred countries on a road trip spanning 560,000 miles. That’s far enough to get to our moon and back, and did we mention their trip lasted twenty-six years? If you think they must have specially tuned Otto, you’re mistaken. Only the suspension was upgraded to account for the weight of the family’s luggage. The engine, transmission, and axles are all stock.
While Otto is going to be celebrated at Mercedes-Benz sites across Europe, the head of Daimler AG, Dieter Zetsche, has confirmed no major design changes will be made to the G-Wagen going forward. “It has to continue as it looks today,” he said in a statement. “It’s not a vehicle that pretends. The G-Class is the original.” That latter sentiment comes in the face of would-be competitors from the UK and elsewhere.
We’re glad to see the brand we represent understands the importance of maintaining the G-Class’s pure form. It’s not just about carrying on a tradition. It’s an understanding that without the G-Wagen, there would be no other Mercedes-Benz utility vehicles.
If you’re interested in seeing how a Mercedes-Benz SUV drives, schedule a test-drive with us at Mercedes-Benz of Cary, the premiere dealership in the Cary and Raleigh area.