From four- to twelve-cylinder engines, the Mercedes G-Class has had them all. There will come a time when a certain variant of the legendary Geländewagen won't feature a petrol or diesel powertrain under the bonnet as an electric model has been confirmed for 2024. It might be previewed by a concept as early as September at IAA Munich, and in the meantime, a report from Autocar aims to shed light on how the G is embracing the electric era.
Thankfully, the luxury SUV built by Magna Steyr is allegedly keeping its ladder-frame chassis. That should translate into serious off-road chops on a par with the ICE-powered G-Class. The British magazine claims the engineers will retain the body-on-frame platform and adapt it for electric propulsion by yanking out the oily bits to replace them with electric motors and a battery pack.
Rather than adopting the EVA platform used for bespoke electric models such as the EQS and the upcoming EQE, the new EQG will electrify the existing G-Class while reportedly inheriting the battery from the company's flagship EV. It is believed the G-Class' generous wheelbase of 2890 millimetres (113.8 inches) can accommodate the 107.8-kWh battery of the EQS, although that remains to be seen since the stately saloon measures 3210 mm (126.4 in) between the axles.
Even if Mercedes will somehow find a way to cram in that larger battery pack, it goes without saying the EQG won't be nearly as efficient as the EQS. The fact it won’t be a purpose-built electric vehicle will hinder efficiency, not to mention its brick-like shape is far from being aerodynamic and consequently doesn't bode well for efficiency.
Styling is expected to remain as boxy as ever, but with a closed-off grille in line with other "EQ" models. Slightly different bumpers, new alloy wheel designs, and other minor tweaks will differentiate it from the petrol- and diesel-fuelled G-Class, much like the EQA and EQB are visually separated from the GLA and GLB, respectively.
Autocar claims Mercedes will sell the EQG exclusively with all-wheel drive, which can only mean the zero-emissions SUV is going to have a dual-motor setup as standard. The instant torque delivered by the electric motors should help the vehicle retain its off-road pedigree when the production vehicle will debut just in time for its 45th anniversary.
Before the EQG arrives in 2024, Mercedes will launch two additional electric SUVs next year as both the EQS and EQE sedans are going to receive high-riding equivalents next year. A new GLC should be revealed in 2022 as well, so it's only a matter of time before the EQC will transition to the second generation.