The electrical Mercedes-Benz Idea EQG is a reinterpreted vehicle icon – street present

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That’s all I can talk about for at least the next few months.

Mercedes Benz

It was a big deal to be legitimate brand new Mercedes-Benz G-Class was presented in 2018. It only shares half a dozen components the previous G-Classwhich has been essentially the same since 1979. It turned out to be a controversial redesign, with purists denouncing the softer styling, the overly technical interior and the more modern driving characteristics. But there is no denying that the new G-Wagen is the best of all time, retains the charm and driving character of the G and at the same time is a better vehicle – not to mention a massive sales success. Now the G-Class is really entering the future with the debut of the Concept EQG on Sunday, a close look at the all-electric G, which will be on the market in a few years.

Well, this concept doesn’t come as a surprise. At the unveiling of the G-car in 2018 Arnold Schwarzenegger made a surprise appearance on stage, and he got Daimler’s then chairman Dieter Zetsche to promise that the G would be part of Mercedes’ full electrification plan. In 2019 then the current Daimler boss Ola Kallenius confirmed that a G-Class EV was in the works. But the unveiling of this Concept EQG means that the production car is on the horizon, with a debut as early as 2022.

The EQG takes up well-known G-Wagen design elements.

Mercedes Benz

The decisive factor is that the Concept EQG still looks like a G-Class – after all, the body is almost identical. It features the EQ branded black panel grill with an illuminated rim and LED squircles that create the illusion of a grille pattern. The real inlets in the lower front bumper also have a squirrel pattern, and new underbody panels are visible. Round lights on the side mirrors take up the classic round headlights and the roof rack has an integrated light bar.

The lighting doesn’t stop there. The side strips of the EQG light up, there is another light bar on the rear of the roof rack and the ring around the spare wheel rack also lights up. However, it is no longer actually a spare wheel carrier: it is a lockable storage compartment for charging cables, and the squircle shape is inspired by wall boxes. I am obsessed with the 22-inch aluminum wheels, which were first used on a G-Wagen in monoblock design, and the two-tone paintwork is also a first for the model. Even if it can’t be seen in photos, the roof rack apparently has a capital G in the middle.


Mercedes Benz

Mercedes keeps most of the technical details of the EQG secret, but there are a few important things that we are aware of. The EQG holds on to the ladder frame of the regular G-car, with the battery integrated into the frame for a low center of gravity. It still has independent front suspension and a solid rear axle, although the setups have been modified specifically for the batteries and electric motors. There are four of these electric motors – one on each wheel. Mercedes says the motors are mounted “close to the wheels” and can be controlled individually, which is a boon for both on-road performance and off-road ability.

The EQG’s capabilities are not going to be a joke – probably even better than the normal Gs – and Mercedes says its off-road capabilities will be unique. Limited slip differentials have always been a hallmark of the G-Class, but with four independently controlled electric motors delivering instant torque and precise torque vectoring capability, differential locks are unnecessary. There is also a switchable two-speed gearbox for off-road reduction, and Mercedes promises “enormous” pulling power. As with every other G-Class, the EQG will also be the Schöcklberg test route in Graz, a 3.5 mile stretch that reaches nearly 5,000 feet and has gradients of up to 60 degrees. Mercedes says the EQG will be able to climb a 100 percent incline just like the gas-powered models.

Pictured: I and my future husband stare longingly at the EQG.

Mercedes Benz

Now be patient with me as I am speculating a little. Mercedes hasn’t released any interior photos yet, but I bet the EQG will have a large touchscreen running the brand’s latest MBUX system. Given the nature of the G-Wag’s dashboard design, I’m not sure what this will look like – I doubt the screen will have S-class‘pseudo-floating look. In terms of specs, I think a range of about 300 miles on the EPA cycle makes sense, but that depends on the size of the batteries. With its four electric motors, we will be sure that the EQG offers over 1,000 horsepower, although it could be available with multiple power levels. And maybe EQG could even get rear-wheel steering and adjustable air suspension, two features that the G-Class has never seen before. But only I dream that.

Mercedes-Benz COO Markus Schäfer says he wants to “inspire customers to switch to electromobility with convincing products,” and the G-Wagen “fulfills this task perfectly”. Emmerich Schiller, managing director of the new G department and Head of Offroad Product Development, the electrification of the G-Wagen is “simply the next logical step” in SUV history. As a big fan of the model, I can’t disagree. It may not have the characteristic V8 rumble of the current G-Class, but I think the benefits of an EV powertrain will inherently match the G’s personality and the criticism that G-Wagen purists have made of the EQG far outweigh. Plus, it will still have that iconic gun bolt door lock sound, and that’s all that really matters.

Mercedes-Benz Concept EQG gives a preview of a series-production electric G-Class

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