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2008 Mercedes-Benz G-Class Review

Note: This review was created when the 2008 Mercedes-Benz G-Class was new.

The G-Class is a powerful SUV with superior off-roading capabilities and a large number of standard luxury and safety features. However, it has mediocre on-road drivability, doesn't offer side air bags, and carries a very high price tag.

7.5

Overall

Scorecard

Critics' Rating: 7.2
Performance: 6.9
Interior: 8.0
Safety:
This model has never been fully tested for safety. Its overall score is being calculated without safety.
N/A
Reliability:
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

Pros & Cons

  • Superior off-road capabilities
  • Solid, heavy-duty construction
  • A bold, military-inspired look
  • Large number of standard comfort and safety features
  • More expensive than comparable vehicles in its class
  • Poor gas mileage for the class
  • Mediocre handling and body roll on highway
  • Lacks standard or optional side air bags

2008 Mercedes-Benz G-Class Overview

According to most reviews, the G's major downfall (aside from its very high price tag) is its poor driving experience.  "Steering is slow and stiff and heavy feeling," says USA Today. "Parking the G-class, or guiding it through the shopping-cart assault at the mall, will be hard work." Critics praise the SUV's torque-y V8 engines, though some note that acceleration becomes sluggish at highway speeds. The G-Class's suspension is tuned for venturing into the wilderness, but several reviewers note that it's much too bouncy and stiff on the highway. And the G-Class's boxy military profile demonstrates both wind resistance and body roll.

For 2008, the G-Class remains relatively unchanged with the exception of a few interior enhancements. The base model G-Class vehicles have a wide array of standard features, from a premium stereo system to built-in GPS navigation. In fact, so many features are standard that there are no optional features available, with just about everything a driver could want already in the base model. Despite this, many reviewers feel that the G-Class is too expensive relative to other SUVs with the same features and better performance. IntelliChoice has not yet rated the 2008 G-Class, but gave the 2007 model "worse than average" value based on total cost of ownership compared to others in its class.

The G-Class comes in two trims -- the G500 and the more powerful G55 AMG -- which feature varying V8 engines.

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