When you think “off-roading,” the first car that probably comes to mind—if you’re an American—is the Jeep Wrangler; an icon of go-anywhere, do-anything capability, especially in Rubicon trim. But if you live elsewhere in the world, you might think of the Mercedes-Benz G-Wagen, another rugged SUV with military heritage that’s an off-road icon in its own right. Over the years, the G-Wagen has become better known as a luxury symbol than one of off-pavement prowess. Has the new Mercedes-Benz G550 gone soft? Watch it go rock crawling in Moab alongside the Jeep Wrangler Rubicon in this comparison video to find out.
Even though the G-Wagen may look more at home on Rodeo Drive than on the Rubicon Trail these days, our Head 2 Head crew wanted to find out just how capable the two rigs really are. Our hosts Jonny Lieberman and Jethro Bovingdon took the two body-on-frame trucks masquerading as SUVs to Utah for an overlanding and Moab rock crawling trip to push them to their off-roading limits.
The Wrangler featured here has knobby off-road tires, disconnecting anti-roll bars for maximum wheel articulation, removable doors, and a fold-down windshield, all to make going off-road as painless as possible. The G-Class, on the other hand, has leather everywhere, heated and massaging seats, and weighs 1,000 pounds more than the Jeep. But let’s not forget, the G-class started life as a military vehicle.
So how did the two stack up against each other and, perhaps more importantly, the rugged and rocky terrain of Moab? See for yourself in the video above. For the full episode of Head 2 Head, click HERE to subscribe to MotorTrend On Demand today!