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Thread: Seeking G-wagen recommendation

  1. #1
    Senior Member S500E's Avatar
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    Seeking G-wagen recommendation

    I already read the epic post on G recommendation here. I never thought that I would be doing this but am interested G now. My 124.036 is a garage queen and is only driven on dry PNW days. Already of have DDs for both my wife & myself. If it ever happens, G will be a weekend toy. May be my wife can drive it when it ever snows hard.

    Found the following online and have not done anything further. Posting here for the trustworthy 500 guys to chime in first. Any general or specific comments will be appreciated.

    Some questions… Low miles truly a plus and worth the cost for these beasts? AMG/G55 vs G? Strong used values from what I can see. What to expect after the “first full redesign” in 2018?

    Somebody stop me from looking into G-class as a toy if you think I am crazy!

    1. 2007 G55 90kmi $50k
    http://www.autotrader.com/cars-for-s...elCode1=G55AMG

    2. 2007 G500 31kmi $64k
    http://www.autotrader.com/cars-for-s...odelCode1=G500

    3. 2009 G550 84kmi $50k
    https://www.cargurus.com/Cars/invent...ting=171487072

    4. 2007 G500 65kmi $47k
    http://www.autotrader.com/cars-for-s...odelCode1=G500
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  2. #2

    Re: Seeking G-wagen recommendation

    2007 was the first year of the 7G-Tronic (722.9) that replaced the legendary 722.6 5-speed box. Most people prefer the .6 for it's low trouble and ease of service. It's not that the 722.9 is a bad transmission, it's just it wasn't nearly as durable as the 722.6.

    Another thing to keep in mind with the G55 is the stock tires (Yokohama AVS/ST) are an absolute pure high performance summer tire. Being in any kind of situation with slick roads will have you suffering for traction especially when stopping.

    Honestly, if you can afford to drop $50,000 on a 10 year-old specialty SUV, you can probably afford to maintenance and repairs. Some G-specific parts are a little more expensive, but the rest is just Mercedes parts bin stuff. The good thing about the G is that any kind of repair is ''worth it'' because of their super high residual values. It's not like you are throwing money away if say you were maintaining a 10 year-old S-Class that will soon be worth $7,200 on a good day.

    The last thing is be prepared for the harsh ride. I've known lots of women who fall in love with the G because the Kardashians run around in them and they look exotic only for them to run right back to their Escalades and Range Rovers because the G rides like the old truck that it is and moves down the road with the grace of a brick.
    Last edited by Harv; 04-04-2017 at 09:14 AM.
    '00 E55 AMG
    '83 240D
    '80 300SD

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    E500E Guru 8899's Avatar
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    Re: Seeking G-wagen recommendation

    Quote Originally Posted by Harv View Post
    2007 was the first year of the 7G-Tronic (722.9) that replaced the legendary 722.6 5-speed box. Most people prefer the .6 for it's low trouble and ease of service. It's not that the 722.9 is a bad transmission, it's just it wasn't nearly as durable as the 722.6.
    True, but if you opt for the G55 you get the M113 paired to the 722.6 5-speed....a bullet-proof drive-line combination.
    Greg
    '94 E500
    '03 E320 4Matic Wagon (W210)

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    Re: Seeking G-wagen recommendation

    I have to agree with Harv's points. Many people are quite unhappy with the G-wagen's ride once they get one and really start driving it. It's a truck, and it was designed as a go-anywhere military truck. It is NOT a comfortable vehicle.

    Unfortunately I can't help much on the post-90s G-wagens, but I do know that the first few years (model years 2002 to about 2005) of G-wagens imported by MBUSA into the US were not reliable and had issues, and should be stayed away from. I think by about 2006 or 2007 things were fine.

    The G-wagens after about 1999 started getting pretty electronic-ified, and thus more complex. There's a good demand for the simpler earlier 463 models, though they are not for everyone.

    I always caution people who get enthralled by the G-wagen (particularly as "something cool for my wife to drive") to think carefully about it, because 95% of the time the charm wears off quickly and the G-wagen's true colors and intent shine through, and it's not always what people want or expect. Far better to get a Range Rover or other genero-Japanese high-end SUV that is designed for comfort ... or a GL-class (what it is called now, the "GLS"?) or ML-class (nee' GLE?) which is a unibody design, not a true truck like a G-class.

    Cheers,
    Gerry

  6. #5
    Senior Member kwontumspeed's Avatar
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    Re: Seeking G-wagen recommendation

    Apologies in advance for the hijack..

    Gerry, what are your thoughts on this potential candidate - asking for a friend? He is an avid offroader and rockcrawler, at time owning vehicles that would make cake in places like moab. He's looking for something very capable but also can be driven to the grocery with relative comfort (see previous comment). The no AC is a non issue for him, BTW.


    https://atlanta.craigslist.org/nat/cto/6035242635.html


    Mercedes 1981 Diesel 300GD G-Wagon SUV 4x4 Benz G-Class - $19950 (Suwanee/Cumming/Johns Creek)

    For sale is a fully Restored 1981 Mercedes 300GD G-Wagon

    3.0 Indestructible Diesel Engine with a 5 Speed Stick Manual Transmission

    The G Wagon has been immaculately restored inside and out , every inch of the car has been restored to perfection.

    This Vehicle was imported from Europe currently located in my garage in Suwanee GA and it has 181,000 original Kilometers , Coverts to 112,500 original miles , this vehicle starts up perfectly , no leaks and runs as it did out of the factory , the engine purs like a mercedes diesel should , these vehicles as well as these engines are built to last for ever , very cool car and a definite head turner , the interior vehicle both mechanically through the engine and cosmetically through the interior has been restored , the oil as well as every single gasket and the brakes were changed and the injectors were removed and rebuilt to ensure maximum performance , all filters and fluids were also changed out and purged , this vehicle started with ease at temperatures of -5 degrees fahrenheit , truly built for any terrain , all new tires, headlights and all plastic components

    Please note the Mercedes w460 Chassis G wagon is a military Spec vehicle originally , this car has minimal electronics ( with the original Becker Radio , one button for a fan , and headlights ect...) there is no A/C , and the ride is by no means quiet , however its not meant to be , this vehicle was originally made to be an all-terrain military and its very clear when driving it , very fun car to drive and a read head turner, I don't go off road much or mudding however this vehicle does have 4x4, all wheel drive and multiple other capabilities making ideal for terrain which would be otherwise impossible to navigate. This car is truly a classic.

    this car is tough and as brutal as it gets it will blow any Land Rover or Wrangler of comparitive age out of the water and it is ready for any terrain , I would not be afraid to drive this car to California .

    Please contact for a full video of the vehicle with new wider tires , giving it a more appropriate aggressive look

    view the photos , you can see this vehicle has been meticulously restored to its former glory,

    also bonus for Georgia Buyers since this vehicle is a 1981 it does not require a title , it does not require yearly emissions testing an it does not require ad valorem/ sales tax up registration

    please see photos for more details. price is firm , cash only at this time

    you can see more of the vehicles i'm having imported on my site www.zwagens.com

    Jeep / Truck / 4x4 / Diesel / Stick Shift / 4 door , turbodiesel , landrover , defender , all terrain , off road , 4 wheel drive , 5-speed , gelandewagen , G wagen
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  7. #6

    Re: Seeking G-wagen recommendation

    Quote Originally Posted by 8899 View Post
    True, but if you opt for the G55 you get the M113 paired to the 722.6 5-speed....a bullet-proof drive-line combination.
    Ah yes. But that further proves my point. Mercedes knew the .6 box could handle the G55 and weren't as confident in the .9. There is a reason why the S/SL/CL65 AMG cars all were equipped with the 722.6 despite the 722.9 being well into production. It was far more durable for the amount of torque produced from those engines.

    Quote Originally Posted by kwontumspeed View Post
    Apologies in advance for the hijack..

    Gerry, what are your thoughts on this potential candidate - asking for a friend? He is an avid offroader and rockcrawler, at time owning vehicles that would make cake in places like moab. He's looking for something very capable but also can be driven to the grocery with relative comfort (see previous comment). The no AC is a non issue for him, BTW.


    https://atlanta.craigslist.org/nat/cto/6035242635.html
    This is a Serbian truck brought in through a private importer who has a little business. There has been lots of talk about them on the G-Wagen forum, some not good.
    '00 E55 AMG
    '83 240D
    '80 300SD

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    Re: Seeking G-wagen recommendation

    G55.
    Blue Ridge Mercedes Jonathan Hodgman
    Mercedes Repair Atlanta
    http://www.blueridgemb.com/
    08 E63; 05 E55 Estate; 95 S600; 93 500E Brumos/RTech; 92 500E T/R; 93 500E Pearl Gray
    91 560SEC ECE; 87 Hammer Coupe, Sedan and Wagon 6.0L 32V; 86 560SEL AMG 6.0L 32V

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    Re: Seeking G-wagen recommendation

    Gerry's and Harv's points are spot on. I had an 04 G55, and once the novelty wore off for the Mrs, all she was left with was a harsh ride. But, that just meant more daddy time with it. I personally love the way it drove -very spartan and no nonsense. I switched over to the Bilstein shocks that came on the g500, kept the stock springs and the ride felt less bone jarring. Go with the best you can buy for the money. And stay with the 55. That 07 looks really good in that designo color.

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    Re: Seeking G-wagen recommendation

    Quote Originally Posted by kwontumspeed View Post
    Gerry, what are your thoughts on this potential candidate - asking for a friend? He is an avid offroader and rockcrawler, at time owning vehicles that would make cake in places like moab. He's looking for something very capable but also can be driven to the grocery with relative comfort (see previous comment). The no AC is a non issue for him, BTW.

    https://atlanta.craigslist.org/nat/cto/6035242635.html

    [INDENT][I]Mercedes 1981 Diesel 300GD G-Wagon SUV 4x4 Benz G-Class - $19950 (Suwanee/Cumming/Johns Creek)
    I'm not Gerry... but that 1981 300GD will have the OM617 non-turbo diesel, making it around 87hp on a good day with about 126 torques (lb-ft). That, in a ~4000 lb chassis, is one slow turd. May be fine for rock crawling though. The OM617 is noisy, heavy, leak-prone, not particularly easy to work on, and requires manual valve lash adjustments on a regular basis. The only claim to fame is they are hard to kill. My thoughts are, make sure your friend takes a LONG test drive before forking over $20k on something with forty-eight pounds per HP and a top speed of 81mph. I'd want the crawling rocks to be very close by.


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  12. #10
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    Re: Seeking G-wagen recommendation

    Thanks gsxr, I don't think that's going to cut it for him. Although he does trailer his rigs to the trailhead he's going to need more than a handful of horses to get him through the type of terrain he encounters. Thanks for the feedback.

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    Senior Member S500E's Avatar
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    Re: Seeking G-wagen recommendation

    Thank you all for your input. No, it won't be a "wife" car. G55 seems to be most attractive among the four despite its "higher" mileage. Should retain its value better than G500/550 over time? Common but rare G color although probably not everyone's favorite.

    07 G55 Canadian import, 2 previous BC owners, and NO SERVICE RECORDS! Should I be worried?

    I did not know that MB US dealers cannot pull VMI on Canadian MBs. Can anyone help here with Canadian VMI?

    Thank you.

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    Re: Seeking G-wagen recommendation

    Quote Originally Posted by kwontumspeed View Post
    Thanks gsxr, I don't think that's going to cut it for him. Although he does trailer his rigs to the trailhead he's going to need more than a handful of horses to get him through the type of terrain he encounters. Thanks for the feedback.
    If he trailers to the fun stuff, that is a big help. Despite the low power output, I think the 300GD is geared so low that it would be fine for rock-crawling shenanigans. If that is the primary use, it actually might be OK. But as an around-town vehicle... yuck. I have to admit being largely ignorant of rock-crawling needs beyond multiple locking diffs, tons of ground clearance, and steep approach/cutover/departure angles.


    Err, back to the original poster's question, I'd probably lean towards the G55 just because, well, AMG. :P The G550 has the 5.5L M273 engine with very impressive power output, if there was a significant difference in price, IMO the G550 would definitely be worth a closer look. The older G500 has the 5.0L M113 which is ol' reliable, but not exactly powerful.


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    Re: Seeking G-wagen recommendation

    Guys, guys, guys.....

    You are all conflating car HP with off-road vehicle HP. The G-wagen, as originally conceived/designed in the mid-1970s and executed until the late 1990s, was a military-spec vehicle that was specifically designed for off/any-road applications, durability, and relative simplicity.

    Having 300-600 HP is NOT a requirement for off-road and rock-crawling use. Having a more reliable engine with lower HP and good torque is really what is needed for a vehicle that is used for this type of activity. This is why the military-spec Hummers don't have 500HP, supercharged engines. It is not needed. Same if you look at the early Range Rovers, Jeep Wranglers, and so forth.

    I realize that everyone here is a car/speed freak, and this is a forum mainly intended for performance sedans with decent HP (albeit 20-25 years' vintage), but this "the more HP the better" mentality DOES NOT APPLY to off-road vehicles.

    MB (and Range Rover) started going off the rails in the mid-1990s (when the G-wagen was already nearly 20 years old), when they realized the market potential for these vehicles as "on-road" Yuppie status toys to see and be seen in, noting that fewer and fewer G-wagens were being used for their original intent. Thus, "parts bin" AMG and diesel engines began being installed to boost HP and torque, which helps the vehicles obtain car-like performance, because that is what customers wanted.

    But not what the vehicle was actually DESIGNED or INTENDED for.

    I can tell you with plenty of certainty that an 87HP OM617-based (or 220 HP M104-based) G-wagen is a very capable off-road vehicle that is still quite true to its original intent. I do not anticipate that these G55 AMG G-wagens will be using their power to obtain 6-second 0-60 times when they are crawling over rocks out in the wild. High speed (and excessive HP/torque) is NOT needed for off-road activities.

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    Re: Seeking G-wagen recommendation

    G55 will hold it's value the best out of your list IMHO. They dropped for a minute but came back something Fierce value wise. Outside of a Brabus M119 G60 or a 560GE that's the one I would want.

    And Gerry is on point, you don't need huge power off road...but in reality how much off roading do most of these G's see?? a fraction of 1% relative to the rest of their pedestrian lives? But watching a modded G launch off the line and DIG it's way to a 110 in the 1/4....hot damn...

    Jono
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    Senior Member S500E's Avatar
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    Re: Seeking G-wagen recommendation

    Unfortunately, I am going to pass on 2007 G55. Unlike Carfax that showed nothing on this Canadian vehicle, "Carproof" had all Canadian history. Nice color combo @ reasonable pricing and local for me, but not the cleanest history.

    My next pick goes to 09 G550 in CA, but may need to pursue with sight unseen. History of 4 years in IL though. What are your next favorites after G55 on this list (or beyond if you know any)? Thanks.

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    Re: Seeking G-wagen recommendation

    IL? There will be Rust on that one too..

    Nothing from the southern side of the country?

    For outright rock solid reliabilty the "humdrum" G500 is hard to beat. That .9 and 273 in the 550 does drive pretty nicely though..we had one in here the other day.

    You have Driven one of these around for more then a few minutes, yes? They do drive like a truck from the 70's...

    Jono
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  20. #17
    Senior Member S500E's Avatar
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    Re: Seeking G-wagen recommendation

    Quote Originally Posted by jhodg5ck View Post
    IL? There will be Rust on that one too..

    Nothing from the southern side of the country?

    For outright rock solid reliabilty the "humdrum" G500 is hard to beat. That .9 and 273 in the 550 does drive pretty nicely though..we had one in here the other day.

    You have Driven one of these around for more then a few minutes, yes? They do drive like a truck from the 70's...

    Jono
    20kmi, 4years in IL would most likely mean some rust unless strictly stored in winters (unlikely for a G)
    Will need to stretch my search area although really don't want to go as far as FL
    With my "low" expectations on G55, 30+min of highway & local driving felt smooth. Not as Tesla or S-class smooth but very acceptable. I am sure that it will start feeling uncomfortable shortly especially once initial charm wears off.
    Steering on G55 felt very light and really had to turn the steering wheel around to get the car turn in low speeds e.g. at roundabouts (understeering?).
    Bumpy but lot of torque and powerful like our E500Es. Down shifts felt very jerky though, lot more noticeable than E500Es.
    Just my impression based on very limited experiences with Gs. Please comment if I am or am not on the right track. Thanks.

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    Re: Seeking G-wagen recommendation

    I know nothing about this dealer, but they have quite the selection of G-wagens.

    http://www.kellymotorcars.com/Invent...edes-Benz.aspx

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    Re: Seeking G-wagen recommendation

    Your driving impressions are basically what is to be expected. The Range Rover that replaced the g55 feels like belongs in a different century from the G. My defender is the closest that comes to the G. That's the nature of the beast. I enjoyed my time with it.

    Open your search up to a nationwide one. Cross country shipping is not too bad. Curious, what was on the carproof repaint on the 07 g55?

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    Re: Seeking G-wagen recommendation

    Quote Originally Posted by gerryvz View Post
    Guys, guys, guys.....

    Having 300-600 HP is NOT a requirement for off-road and rock-crawling use. Having a more reliable engine with lower HP and good torque is really what is needed for a vehicle that is used for this type of activity.
    I agree completely. To clarify my comments in post #12, I meant the diesel 300GD would likely be fine as an off-roader, especially if trailered. But as a daily driver or around-town vehicle, I think most people would get tired of the 'charm' very, very quickly. It wasn't designed for that use. Trailer it to Moab, and it would be awesome.


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    Re: Seeking G-wagen recommendation

    Quote Originally Posted by hobbsm3 View Post
    Your driving impressions are basically what is to be expected. The Range Rover that replaced the g55 feels like belongs in a different century from the G. My defender is the closest that comes to the G. That's the nature of the beast. I enjoyed my time with it.

    Open your search up to a nationwide one. Cross country shipping is not too bad. Curious, what was on the carproof repaint on the 07 g55?
    Yes, started searching nationwide. Looking for a clean, non-black one. 2007 G55 had 2 collision insurance claims.

    This 2kmi brown is gorgeous but @ $100k asking price
    https://thebarrioscollection.com/inv...Benz-G%20Class
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    Re: Seeking G-wagen recommendation

    Any updates on your quest for a G-wagen?!?

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    Re: Seeking G-wagen recommendation

    Yes, but still sitting and waiting to be picked up by Passport. 3 weeks of waiting with Passport alone but was just told that it will be after the long weekend
    Was planning on posting an unloading shot from Passport here http://www.500eboard.com/forums/show...?t=5940&page=2

    Quote Originally Posted by gerryvz View Post
    Any updates on your quest for a G-wagen?!?

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