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Juliet McGuire

First drive in the new Mercedes-AMG G63

Is there any car cooler than a G-Wagon? No, I don’t think there is. I don’t even think the word “cool” is cool enough for it. I am not young (or cool) enough to get away with words such a “lit” or whatever else it is millennials say these days, but what I do know is that this new Mercedes-AMG G63 is hot as f***! That is a saying that never goes out of fashion, much like the G-Wagon!

Mercedes-AMG G63

I flew up to the Cradle of Humankind for the local launch of this beast. And what an appropriate spot, right? The G-Class is all about the DNA, the heritage, the genes. So why not launch where the very start of humankind originated? I feel like this fossil stuff should interest me more, but when you have the new G63 waiting to be test driven, nothing else really matters.

LOOKING GOOD

It retains its good looks, obviously. Not much has changed over the years. Not since the very first one which launched back in 1979. Since then, this icon has become more than just a status symbol. But isn’t it funny, I never look at the driver of a G-Wagon and think he/she is compensating for something. I look at them with an instant respect. It’s a car that gives zero f***s and so why should the driver? The G-Class driver doesn’t care what you think about them. They don’t have to care. They’re driving a G-Wagon and you’re not.

STEP INSIDE

Where this new Mercedes-AMG G63 has changed is on the inside. Due to it being slightly wider, taller and longer, the inside is now more spacious than ever. It also no longer feels, well, industrial. It’s modern and luxurious. And so it bloody well should be at a price tag of just under R2.6 million. But again, zero shits given! I’d pay that if I had the money to do so, and I cannot say that about any other car in this price range. You will recognise the Windscreen Cockpit from the E-Class and a few other titbits here and there from the S-Class.

Mercedes-AMG G63

VROOM VROOM

Powering this beautiful beast is now a 4.4-litre biturbo V8 which produces numbers I have never even written down in a review (ok that is a lie, but it’s for dramatic effect), 480 kW and a WHOPPING 850 Nm of torque. This thing can propel itself from standstill to 100 km/h in just 4.5 seconds. And let me tell you, it is a thrill like no other trying to achieve this time. The sound coming out of those exhaust pipes flows through you like a bottle of smooth wine, giving you a buzz that takes you a while to shake (not that you want to). The only problem I had was with the Lane Keeping Assist. It is so aggressive you almost crap yourself every time it ruks the steering wheel out of your hands to pull you back in to the lane. Apparently, it can be turned off, but I only found this out once we had finished driving. Fail! The steering is also helluva sensitive and so can cause a few heart palpitations if you’re not concentrating, but that too can be adjusted.

This car is made for cruising both on and off road. We only tackled a bit of gravel and loose stone, but it was enough to appreciate the sure footedness of this vehicle – even if the bum slid out on a couple corners – it made for some exciting moments (for me, not for my poor passenger).

Being so practical (the boot can swallow quite a bit of luggage) makes this Mercedes-AMG G63 the complete package. Sure, you are paying for it, but the same can’t be said for every car sitting around this price mark. If you ever want an experience like no other, hop in to a G-Class. It is after all, the only Mercedes-Benz model series to not have known an end to production. It just evolves, gets better and stronger, hence the “stronger than time” slogan. The G350 is due in SA in 2019.

MERCEDES-AMG G63 PRICING

R2 591 000

I have other Mercedes-Benz reviews you might be interested in.

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