Mercedes launches electric G-Class in Beijing

The German premium car manufacturer Mercedes-Benz has revealed its electric version of the iconic G Class off-roader at the Beijing International Automotive Exhibition in China. It won’t be called the EQG but rather ominous the G580 with EQ technology.

The all-new electric G-Class remains true to the model’s character, retaining its angular silhouette, including all iconic elements. Like the conventionally powered variants, its body is built on a ladder frame. The development team has modified and reinforced this to integrate the electric drive.

Also retained is the combination of independent front suspension with double wishbones and a newly developed rigid rear axle. The large high-voltage lithium-ion battery integrated into the ladder frame ensures a low center of gravity.

116 kWh battery, 473 km range

With its usable capacity of 116 kWh and energy consumption of 30.3-27.7 kWh/100 km, it provides sufficient energy for ranges of up to 473 kilometers according to WLTP standards. Underbody protection made from a mix of materials, including carbon, protects the battery from physical impact.

“Throughout its more than 45-year history, the G-Class has always used the most modern drive technology available,’ says Markus Schäfer, Board member at Mercedes-Benz Group AG and Chief Technology Officer.

“So, it’s entirely fitting that the innovative drive concept with four individually controlled electric motors once again raises the legendary performance of our off-road icon to a new level. It even retains that familiar angular silhouette and is true to the character of our beloved ‘Geländewagen’.”

Real off-roader with 4 motors

The Mercedes G Class has always been at ease on the most difficult terrain. Its new electric version continues in the same tracks and adds something to this.

The four individually controlled electric motors located near the wheels develop a maximum total output of 432 kW and a maximum torque of 1,164 Nm. Together with the selectable ‘Low Range’ off-road gear reduction, they enable unique driving characteristics and exclusive functions.

This allows ‘G-Turn’ to turn the vehicle almost on the spot on loose or unpaved surfaces. The ‘G-Steering’ function can deliver a significantly smaller turning circle when driving off-road. The three-speed intelligent off-road crawl function is like cruise control for off-roading – maintaining optimum propulsion while the driver focuses on navigating the terrain.

Long tests with several variants have shown that the all-new Mercedes-Benz G 580 with EQ Technology has a gradability of up to 100% on suitable surfaces. The vehicle remains stable on sideways slopes of up to 35 degrees.

With a maximum fording depth of 850 millimeters, the electric G‑Class outperforms its conventionally powered counterparts by 150 millimeters. The Low Range off-road gearing increases propulsion with a special reduction ratio.

Each motor close to the wheel has its own transmission, which is shifted centrally. This ensures the independence of the motors. At each axle are two electric motors, their gearboxes, and a double inverter in a shared housing. This configuration facilitates an off-road reduction ratio that equips the electric off-roader for use on difficult terrain. It ensures maximum torque and smooth temperature management.

The all-new electric G-Class is standardly equipped with the same adaptive adjustable damping as the conventionally powered variants.

The car accelerates from 0 to 100 kph in 4.7 seconds. The top speed is electronically limited to 180 km/h. As electric motors can provide their maximum torque from a standstill, the all-electric off-roader excels with enormous pulling power and exceptional controllability. This proves advantageous both on steep inclines and loose surfaces.

Intelligent torque vectoring

The all-new model generates the function of conventional differential locks virtually using intelligent torque vectoring. This technology allows for precisely metering torque to each individual wheel. The result is maximum traction with maximum flexibility without distortion when cornering.

The ‘Eco Assistant’ analyses navigation data along the expected route. This means the system can help adapt the driving style economically to the route ahead by minimizing energy consumption and maximizing recuperation.

‘G-Roar’, finally, brings a unique sound experience to the all-new electric G-Class. In addition to a characteristic, G-Class-specific driving sound, it includes one ‘aura’ sound and a variety of ‘event’ sounds.

Tradition and luxury

The electric G-Class is immediately recognizable as a member of the ‘G’ family line. The exterior gets an electric look with an optional black-panel radiator grille. A number of distinguishing features set the all-electric variant apart from the conventionally powered models.

These include a slightly raised bonnet and so-called air curtains in the rear wheel-arch flares, as well as the design box on the rear. In combination with new A-pillar cladding and a spoiler lip on the roof, they contribute to optimized aerodynamics.

The all-new Mercedes-Benz G 580 with EQ Technology is equipped with the MBUX infotainment system (Mercedes-Benz User Experience), a multifunction leather steering wheel, and ambient lighting as standard.

Of course, the customer can dive into the extensive option catalog. Optional extras include keyless entry, temperature-controlled cup holders, the Burmester 3D surround sound system, and a ‘transparent bonnet’.

The redesigned off-road control unit and the new ‘Offroad Cockpit’ are available as options to enhance the off-road experience with additional digital functions. At launch, a lavishly equipped ‘Edition One’ version, a limited-edition model with an expanded palette of standard features and exclusive design elements, is available.

The latter will cost €192,524.15 in Germany, a hefty 50,000 euros more than the starting price of €142,621.50 for the ‘normal’ G 580 with EQ Technology.


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