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New Mercedes G-Class – Important Internal Improvements

Last year I reviewed the 2016 Mercedes-Benz AMG G63. I wanted to love it but I couldn’t. The interior was cramped and outdated. The tall and narrow body on stick axles was fighting physics when 563-horsepower was applied, and losing. The ride wasn’t exactly “class leading”, as the automakers call it. I loved the looks but I didn’t love much else. Despite that, the G-class is selling very well for what it is, an old military vehicle on steroids and with lots of lipstick. Clearly, Mercedes couldn’t just kill it. But they couldn’t change it, either. They had to improve it. 

Per recent press release, Mercedes started improving the G-Class from the inside. The biggest problem with the current interior, bottom picture, is that is looks and feels like it’s been modernized and modified a million times, because it has, but still has the same old bones. There is no room between the seat and the door, so some seat controls are on top of the seats. The center console is narrow, about the width of a cell phone. Climate controls are placed way low and are difficult to see. The screen looks like an iPad randomly attached on top. It’s just dated. 

But the new G-class, top picture, is basically S-Class squared. The most distinctive thing from the older Gelandewagens was carried over, the three locking differential buttons. Of course most buyers don’t know what they do, or when and how to use them, but they’re there. Otherwise, it’s modern Mercedes with sharper angles. But the dash board is not the big news here…

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Review: 2016 Mercedes-Benz AMG G63

The biggest problem with the G-Class is that people buy it for the wrong reasons. This is a vehicle that, much like Land Rover’s Defender and Jeep’s Wrangler, was originally developed for utilitarian and military purposes. But now it is being bought by B-list celebrities, app developers, and athletes with freshly signed professional contracts. It stopped being an expedition vehicle and it became an accessory to a Prada dress, and that is rather sad.

Mercedes G-Class was launched in 1979. Since then, it has been offered in countless body, chassis, and powertrain configurations. It was a globetrotter, fire engine, and light military vehicle before becoming a character on the Kardashians. Because the appearance of the G-Glass has remained rather unchanged, with time it became iconic. It has undergone a constant evolution rather than a complete revolution every five years like all other vehicles.

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Mercedes-Benz S63 AMG Sedan: Big, Bold, …Brutal

The Mercedes-Benz S63 AMG sedan is one of the greatest cars on the planet. It’s technologically advanced, supremely luxurious, and possesses seemingly endless power. It’s also tremendously expensive.

Under the hood spins a pair of turbochargers that a 5.5-liter V8 engine.That combination is good for 577 horsepower and 664 pound-feet of torque. It’s used to propel a car that’s basically the closest thing we have to a luxury rocket ship for the road.

Oh… and it can drive itself for stretches at a time.

[Disclaimer: Mercedes-Benz tossed us the keys to the S63 AMG sedan for a week, and included a tank of gas. I considered adding more tanks and escaping with the car into South America.]

2006 Mercedes-Benz SL55 AMG: Performance Bargain or Bank Account Buster

When looking on the used market for your ideal performance car, you certainly have plenty to choose from. Here at Redusernab we preach to the hills that used cars are near and dear to our hearts. When buying used German cars though, you are treading on some fairly dangerous ground. With technology and innovation comes more expensive maintenance costs.

I’ve recently been enjoying some of the cars I wanted to drive years ago. A 2006 Mercedes-Benz SL55 AMG recently fell into my lap and I wanted to see if this car lived up to the hype I’d given it in my own head.

This review doesn’t take place in my Southern California back yard. This time I flew to Dallas and endured the sweltering heat and humidity to provide some entertainment. It’s the small sacrifices I make for the viewers. Does the SL55 AMG live up to the hype, or is it a maintenance disaster waiting to hit your bank account?

Click play to find out.

Mercedes-Benz E350 Wagon: Long Live the Longroof!

The wagon… It’s fallen out of favor over the course of the last few decades thanks to the rise in popularity of sport and crossover utility vehicles. That’s a shame, because the wagon is the TRUE sport utility vehicle in the market.

Case in point is this 2015 Mercedes-Benz E350 wagon. It’s powered by a 302-horsepower V8 engine, has seating for up to seven people, or it can be used to haul a whole lot of stuff. This longroof drives in a manner that’s far more enjoyable than any SUV or CUV counterpart, and it looks better as well.

Only a handful of automakers are still cranking out wagons… which means only a handful of automakers still get it. Long live the longroof!

[Disclaimer: Mercedes-Benz tossed me the keys to this wagon for a week, and included a tank of gas. I actually got oddly ill while shooting the car, which wasn’t the fault of the Benz. Can you tell I feel like crap during the video? I did love the car though.]

Mercedes-Benz CLA45 AMG: Ballin’ on a budget or the real AMG deal?

For many years now, AMG have been churning out ballistic machines with hand-built engines. The cars sole purpose has been to generate power, noise, and tire smoke. Now though, there’s a new generation of AMG vehicles and one of the interesting spots in the lineup is occupied by the CLA45 AMG.

It’s a compact sedan that’s shaped a bit like a coupe and offers up turbocharged four-cylinder goodness. That doesn’t sound like something that the mad minds at AMG would cook up… until you realize that this is one of the most powerful four-cylinder engines ever created.

Still, is it the real AMG experience or is it merely a budget pretender? Let’s watch…

First Drive: 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA45 AMG
The baddest four-banger ever built

2014-Mercedes-Benz-CLA45-AMG

According to Greek Mythology, we’re currently smack dab in the middle of the Iron Age. This is the last of the five ages of man. It’s called the Iron Age because the previous ages were more glorious and their names reflect that by way of far more precious metals. This is supposed to be a period of decline for mankind. I think the ancient Greeks are wrong, and we’ve come full circle… into a new Golden Age.

Amazing feats of engineering and design are currently being produced at a glorious pace. Private space travel is closer than ever, a hyperloop could possibly whisk us from Los Angeles to San Francisco in the time it takes to watch a sitcom, and our phones can transmit images of our food to friends on the other side of the planet in the blink of an eye.

It’s also a Golden Age for car enthusiasts. The horsepower wars have been in full swing for a few years now. You can get V8-equipped sports cars belching out sonorous exhaust notes due to the work of over 600 horsepowers cranking from under hood. The six-cylinder machines of the world are well above the 300-horsepower mark, and a handful of four-cylinder machines are producing enough to make most folks smile widely. Now, however, the game is changing again with the arrival of the 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLA45 AMG.

Lady and gentlemen, say hello to this shapely machine and you’re saying hello to the most powerful production four-cylinder engine ever produced. Say hello to the Golden Age.

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Video Review: Mercedes-Benz GLK250
Torque is your friend

Mercedes-Benz GLK

Yes… I picked this picture strictly because I know you’ll Photoshop the heck out of it. It’s a Mens Warehouse ad meets a creative for some sort of Move to Malibu movement. It works though, because the vehicle I’m caressing above is the new diesel-powered Mercedes-Benz GLK250. It has a bit of horsepower and gobs of torque, and it’s actually a rather compelling argument in the premium to luxury compact crossover segment.

Yes… of course I’d rather have some form of C-Class wagon, but we don’t get that. Instead, the GLK fills that gap in a solid manner, and it does so while still retaining a very Benz-cabin that doesn’t feel you’re a baller on a budget. Click past the jump to lear more.

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Quick Spin: 2013 Mercedes-Benz GLK250 BlueTEC

2013 Mercedes-Benz GLK250 BlueTEC

Mercedes-Benz has had a long love affair with the diesel motor. The automaker has been churning out oil burners for well over 75years. In the United States, Benz has been sending over diesel-drinking machines since 1949. In fact, during the oil crisis of the 70’s and 80’s, many car shoppers turned to Mercedes for diesel offerings to help alleviate costs at the pump. Eventually, however, consumers got a bit tired of the loud, stinking machines and turned their attention back to regular gasoline.

Things have changed, however, and diesel vehicles are experiencing a renaissance in this country. Volkswagen and Audi both sell a bunch, BMW has added a few stateside, and even a few Japanese and American manufacturers are now offering diesel vehicles. It makes sense then that one of the pioneers of the diesel engine would continue to add more oil-burners to its existing family of products.

Enter the 2013 Mercedes-Benz GLK250 BlueTEC.

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First Drive: 2013 Mercedes-Benz GL-Class

I’m sitting 10,200 feet above sea level, staring at the immense angularity of the Taos ski resort unfolding upwards into the sky. There’s no snow on the ground and the sun is shining bright upon my back.  Still, I can visualize what a day spent snowboarding or skiing might look like here. Kids would be knocking over skis set aside on the racks, my wallet would be $15 lighter thanks to a mediocre hamburger, and the parking lot near the lift would be filled with full-size sport utility vehicles.

Since it’s the middle of the summer, the lifts aren’t moving and the air is devoid of the noises associated with families scrambling between the lodge and their ski-in/ski-out accommodations. The parking lot, however, is still filled with a colorful variety of large SUVs. All of them are wearing the same skin though, because each one is a shiny new example of the 2013 Mercedes-Benz GL-Class.

The three-row luxury hauler with the tri-star on the grille has been redesigned, and I’m here in New Mexico to turn the key and sample the updated goods.

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