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2023 March
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Car and Driver: Room for Squareds: 2017 Mercedes-Benz G550 4×4² Now for U.S. Sale


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2015 Mercedes-Benz G500 4x4²


It was pretty much a given, but now it’s official: Mercedes-Benz USA, the lifted G500 4×4² is coming to America. Only the name is being changed, from G500 to G550, but the craziness remains the same. It goes on sale early next year.



For around $200,000, the 4×4² is effectively a Unimog that can blast to 60 mph in less than six seconds. At each corner are dual shocks and portal axles, those neat, gear-laden types that let the half shafts drop down from the axles for extreme levels of clearance and articulation.




We’ve already driven the thing, and its recipe versus the already extremely robust G550 is more of everything: 7.9 inches extra clearance, 15.8 inches additional wading depth, 21.6-degree steeper approach angle, 23.4 degrees more on the breakover, and 13.8 extra degrees on departure. The front track is wider by nine inches, the rear by 10 inches.


G500 4x4 Granada


Three feet of water? No problem. Boulder in your path sticking up a foot and a half? The 4×4² can straddle it with an inch to spare. By comparison, the Hummer H1—the vehicle that could climb six-foot vertical walls—trails the 4×4² in almost every off-road measurement. One of the few things 4×4² can’t do better than an H1 is traverse a slope. That’s limited to 28.4 degrees, compared to the Humvee’s 30.


G500 4x4, test drive Granada 2015


The 4.0-liter twin-turbo V-8 with 416 horsepower and 450 pound-feet of torque is the same as in the regular G500, as is the seven-speed automatic and triple locking differentials. The chassis is heavily modified but Mercedes did nothing to the G’s steel frame—which, we can report after a company test driver accelerated us down an Austrian mountain pass, head slamming against the Alcantara roof—is plenty strong. In the U.S., the G550 4×4² is more likely to roll up to an L.A. nightclub. But when Mercedes says “all terrain,” isn’t that what they really mean?


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