The beastly Mercedes-Benz G-Class receives a pretty big makeover for 2016, including extensive powertrain updates and a number of cosmetic touch-ups.
The most notable change to the G-Class lineup is the new G500 model that replaces the outgoing G550. The Mercedes-Benz G500 is powered by the new 4.0-liter twin-turbocharged V-8 engine derived from the Mercedes-AMG GT sports car. This new powertrain doesn’t come as too much of a surprise, as this engine was included in the recent Mercedes-Benz G500 4x4 Squared show car. The 4.0-liter churns out 415 hp and 450 lb-ft of torque in the G500, 33 hp and 59 lb-ft more than the 5.5-liter V-8 found in the outgoing G550.
The overseas-only G350d’s 3.0-liter diesel V-6 also gets a power bump from 208 hp to 241 hp, with torque spiking from 398 lb-ft to 443 lb-ft of torque.
The high-performance Mercedes-AMG G63 retains the same 5.5-liter twin-turbocharged V-8, but also receives more power, now making 563 hp and 561 lb-ft of torque, up from 536 hp and 560 hp. At the top of the lineup, the insane Mercedes-AMG G65 now makes 621 hp and 738 lb-ft of torque from its 6.0-liter twin-turbocharged V-12, up from 612 hp.
Other than the powertrain changes, the refreshed 2016 Mercedes-Benz G-Class receives a new standard suspension setup, with different shock absorbers for improved handling and comfort, along with revised standard stability control, traction control, and ABS. The new G500 is now available with a new adaptive damping suspension, which includes both Sport and Comfort settings.
Both the non-AMG G500 and G350d models receive a mild visual refresh as well, with standard AMG wheel arches and redesigned bumpers. On the inside, all G-Class models are outfitted with a new gauge instrument cluster, bespoke to either the base G500 and G350D or the high-end AMG models.
The Mercedes Gelandewagen is now available in a host of new colors, including solar beam, tomato red, alien green (pictured above), sunset beam, and galactic beam. Various exterior trim pieces, including the ring surround to the exterior spare wheel and the side mirror caps, are painted in black.
Finally, a new special edition trim for the Mercedes-AMG models is now available. The new Edition 463 adds a two-tone instrument panel, two-tone leather seating surfaces, diamond design on the center door panels, along with carbon fiber trim and leather door pulls. On the outside, the package adds a stainless steel underguard, side sport stripes, and bespoke 21-inch wheels.
These changes are being rolled out to the European-spec G-Class models for 2015, so expect the same upgrades to appear on the U.S.-market 2016 Mercedes-Benz G-Class within the next few months.