New Mercedes G Wagen AMG is even quicker, even cooler
If there was a prize for silliest car of the year (SCOTY for short) to go with the traditional COTY Car of the Year award, this would be our nomination.
The Mercedes G63 AMG is possibly the most mismatched collection of attributes ever fitted to a production car. The chassis comes from the original 1979 G-Wagen, a Mercedes equivalent to the Land Rover Defender, much favoured by farmers and armies across the world. However, the engine is the latest generation twin-turbocharged 5.5-litre V8 petrol engine, developing 536bhp and 560lb ft of torque.
The result is a 1970s hardcore off-roader, with a narrow, cramped interior, a hard ride and a level of refinement with makes a Ford Ranger pick-up feel like a limousine – but with a 0-62 mph time of 5.4 seconds. If you can imagine a Land Rover Defender fitted with a Range Rover Supercharged engine, you won't be far away (actually we have a kind of Defender equivalent here)
Amusingly, the only reason the car exists is rap videos. That is not a gratuitous insult – it is simply that Mercedes had already announced the ending of G-Wagen production in 2006. After numerous starring appearances on MTV, demand for V8 petrol versions soared, and Mercedes decided to keep it in production for its new clientele (cognac glasses optional).
The G63 AMG will be joined in certain markets - Middle East Russia, China - by a 603 bhp G65 AMG. That is more gangsta than Snoop Dogg watching The Godfather trilogy.
If you can think of any production car even sillier than this one, let us know. Maybe we'll start an official SCOTY award.