Nothing but a G-Thing!

In 1998, I had a dream car - it was a simple and obtainable Audi S3. I wanted it; and I knew that one day soon, I would have it. 6 years later, the dream came true and that was that. No sooner had I felt the short lived fulfillment of that boyhood dream, did another one pop up. A bigger one. A more manly one.

Enter the Mercedes Benz G-Class. In those days, it was the 'Bruce Willis in Diehard' of all Mercedes products: tough as nails; rugged and ready for anything. What struck me was that there weren't too many around and I soon learnt that the very few I saw, were imported at hefty prices by hefty men. This exclusive car seemed too distant. Literally.

So with my dreams dashed, I have wandered South Africa a sad and miserable soul - up until last week when I heard the most exciting Car news I've heard in many years. The off-road department at Mercedes Benz have decided to bring the G-thing back to South Africa. The dream continues!

Word has it that the G-Wagen is here in 3 variants: a Turbo-Diesel G300 CDI; a G350 BlueTec and the big G55 AMG. The 'entry level' prices start at just under R800,000 and the big gun will hurt the pocket to the tune of R1,875,000.

With defence companies and defence forces having used these vehicles in their fleets for many years now, I think it's safe to say that as a 4X4, the G-class ticks all of the tough boxes. The G-Class is not a 'Defender' however, instead it boasts the luxury and niceties befitting a high end Mercedes with a host of extra overland options that you can tick if you are heading to Kubu Island for the weekend.

Is it expensive? I don't know - I suppose a car with a reputation and ability to go almost anywhere; carries a 3-pointed star badge; is endorsed by the protectors of nations and is sold in South Africa is bound to be a little hefty on the price tag, and I'm actually cool with that. Dreamcars shouldn't come cheap right?

But I am trying to figure out what it is about this car that has shifted my paradigm from being performance oriented to being more interested in the ruggedness and offroad prowess of a Mercedes. It almost seems like a paradox to speak about a Merc like this, but not this one.

Perhaps it's the fact that I am due to be a father in just a few months; so things like speed are less likely to get me excited. Perhaps it's the fact that though I am a big fan of Mercedes Benz, this is one of their products that I don't know too much about. Perhaps it's because I seem to appreciate the overland adventure a little more than I did when I was driving a sportscar.
I don't know, but either way, my dream car is back in a blaze of glory! When Mercedes Benz decide to offer me a drive, I will let you know if it has lived up to my dreams in the same way that my 1st dream car did. For now though; I am smiling; and I can't wait to have a little adventure with it.

- Ave -