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Mercedes-Benz Delivers Record-Breaking 2014 Sales Volume Of 330,391, Up 5.7%

  • MBUSA up 6.7%; Sprinter, smart post double-digit gains

MONTVALE, N.J., Jan. 5, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Mercedes-Benz today reported record-breaking 2014 sales of 330,391, up 5.7% from the 312,534 units sold in 2013. Annual Sprinter sales increased 18% to 25,745, combining with 10,453 units at smart, up 12.8%, for a best-ever year-to-date grand total of 366,589 for Mercedes-Benz USA (MBUSA).

 

"The past year brought key milestones for Mercedes-Benz on both the product and customer service fronts," said Stephen Cannon, president and CEO of MBUSA. "Capped by another round of record sales, we're more aligned than ever in pairing a 'best or nothing' model lineup with the best ownership experience in the business."

 

Sales of Mercedes-Benz passenger cars, ranging from the entry-level CLA four-door coupe to the brand's S-Class flagship, increased to 212,086 from the 206,221 vehicles sold in 2013. On the light truck side, retail volumes hit 118,305, up 11.3% from 106,315 units last year.

 

Annual volume leaders included the C-, E- and M-Class model lines. The C-Class, which received a full redesign for the 2015 model year, took the top spot with 75,065 units, followed by the E-Class at 66,400. The best-selling Mercedes-Benz SUV, the M-Class, rounded out the top three at 46,726, up 13.1% from the 41,326 vehicles sold the previous year. At the high end, the S-Class saw yearly sales increase 90% to 25,276 from 13,303 in 2013.

 

A best-ever December for Mercedes-Benz delivered monthly sales of 34,009, compared to 33,007 in December 2013. The C-Class remained the volume leader with 8,224 units, up 13.8% from 7,229 the same month last year. The M-Class came second at 5,625—an increase of 25.4%—followed close behind by the E-Class at 5,119.

 

December sales for Sprinter Vans hit a record 3,288, climbing 16.3% from the 2,828 units sold the same month last year. Adding 973 units for smart, up 13.8% from 855 in December 2013, MBUSA posted a monthly grand total of 38,270.

 

Mercedes-Benz AMG high-performance models closed out 2014 with an annual volume of 11,303, jumping 44.9% from 7,802 units the previous year. For the month, AMG sales totaled 1,122, compared to 1,109 in December 2013. Mercedes-Benz BlueTEC diesel models delivered a total of 14,544 vehicles in 2014, with December sales reaching 1,183.

 

Separately, Mercedes-Benz Certified Pre-Owned (MBCPO) vehicles recorded annual sales of 119,257, an increase of 20.4% from the 99,075 units sold in 2013. On a monthly basis, MBCPO achieved a record December with 11,379 units, up 17% from the same month last year.

 

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So I wonder how SMK justifies MB as being the best when they cannot even deliver double digit sales growth compared to GM.

 

For the Month MB only has a 4.73% sales Growth

 

For the year MB only has a 6.7%

 

Negative Growth by model

 

C Class -14.9%

E Class -4.9%

CL Class -53.6%

SL Class -28.2%

SLS Class -48.6%

SLK Class -.04%

CLS Class -13.1%

R Class -73,3%

GL Class -11.1%

 

Positive sales

B Class 780%

CLA Class 93.9%

S Class 90%

M Class 13.1%

G Class 23.9%

GLK 7.5%

Sprinter 18%

Smart Car 12.8%

 

More losses than gains and compared to Cadillac bigger looser.

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So I wonder how SMK justifies MB as being the best when they cannot even deliver double digit sales growth compared to GM.

 

For the Month MB only has a 4.73% sales Growth

 

For the year MB only has a 6.7%

 

Negative Growth by model

 

C Class -14.9%

E Class -4.9%

CL Class -53.6%

SL Class -28.2%

SLS Class -48.6%

SLK Class -.04%

CLS Class -13.1%

R Class -73,3%

GL Class -11.1%

 

Positive sales

B Class 780%

CLA Class 93.9%

S Class 90%

M Class 13.1%

G Class 23.9%

GLK 7.5%

Sprinter 18%

Smart Car 12.8%

 

More losses than gains and compared to Cadillac bigger looser.

 

 

Wow. Its almost as if Benz's growth is completely about mainstream type vehicles. Well with exception to the S

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I'm surprised about the C-Class. It is easily the best model in years. 

 

I would probably chalk that up to the new model transition, and maybe a few sales that went to the CLA. For the month, it was up. 

 

 

So I wonder how SMK justifies MB as being the best when they cannot even deliver double digit sales growth compared to GM.

 

For the Month MB only has a 4.73% sales Growth

 

For the year MB only has a 6.7%

 

Negative Growth by model

 

C Class -14.9%

E Class -4.9%

CL Class -53.6%

SL Class -28.2%

SLS Class -48.6%

SLK Class -.04%

CLS Class -13.1%

R Class -73,3%

GL Class -11.1%

 

Positive sales

B Class 780%

CLA Class 93.9%

S Class 90%

M Class 13.1%

G Class 23.9%

GLK 7.5%

Sprinter 18%

Smart Car 12.8%

 

More losses than gains and compared to Cadillac bigger looser.

 

Pardon my ignorance, but how exactly is MB the bigger *loser? Mercedes brand sales were up 5.7% YTD while Cadillac brand sales were down 6.5% YTD. Total sales for the Mercedes brand? 330k total. Cadillac? 170K total. Of those losses you mentioned, the CL, SLS, and R lines are all being replaced or discontinued. After that things even out a bit, especially with the addition of the GLA sales you omitted. Cadillac on the other hand only has the Escalade to thank for any positive sales growth. 

 

I will stand up for Cadillac all day long, but I simply can't understand your logic most of the time. 

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Cadillac is not perfect, yet with all the changes they have gone through over the last 4-6 years, they have come a long way in a short time and the most recent changes have not affected them as much as some people would like everyone to think. With 8 auto lines down double digits, saying MB is the worlds best and can not be faulted I have to raise the BS flag. You have 5 or 6 with my missed GLA sales that have double digit growth, then you have growth in the van and sub compact eco car area but over all MB is not perfect auto company many like to say.

 

For all that GM has done since 2007, they have really made some impressive gains.

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Cadillac is not perfect, yet with all the changes they have gone through over the last 4-6 years, they have come a long way in a short time and the most recent changes have not affected them as much as some people would like everyone to think. With 8 auto lines down double digits, saying MB is the worlds best and can not be faulted I have to raise the BS flag. You have 5 or 6 with my missed GLA sales that have double digit growth, then you have growth in the van and sub compact eco car area but over all MB is not perfect auto company many like to say.

 

For all that GM has done since 2007, they have really made some impressive gains.

 

You can't expect every model to have sales increases, especially with a line-up as large as Mercedes'. For what its worth, overall sales matter more than individual models. If the tables were turned and those figures were for Cadillac, you'd be touting the overall increased sales and not resorting to nitpicking over which models are down and making a story of it.

 

Also, just some fuel for the fire because I love analyzing sales figures... Let's compare 2007 to 2014.

 

cadmbsales.jpg

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Cadillac is not perfect, yet with all the changes they have gone through over the last 4-6 years, they have come a long way in a short time and the most recent changes have not affected them as much as some people would like everyone to think. With 8 auto lines down double digits, saying MB is the worlds best and can not be faulted I have to raise the BS flag. You have 5 or 6 with my missed GLA sales that have double digit growth, then you have growth in the van and sub compact eco car area but over all MB is not perfect auto company many like to say.

 

For all that GM has done since 2007, they have really made some impressive gains.

 

I think what Dfelt is inelegantly saying (sorry) is that Mercedes is making great inroads into Buick's market (GLA/CLA), Chevy's market (SMART) and GMC's market (Sprinter) but not so great at the core business that they're known for. 

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Cadillac is not perfect, yet with all the changes they have gone through over the last 4-6 years, they have come a long way in a short time and the most recent changes have not affected them as much as some people would like everyone to think. With 8 auto lines down double digits, saying MB is the worlds best and can not be faulted I have to raise the BS flag. You have 5 or 6 with my missed GLA sales that have double digit growth, then you have growth in the van and sub compact eco car area but over all MB is not perfect auto company many like to say.

 

For all that GM has done since 2007, they have really made some impressive gains.

 

I think what Dfelt is inelegantly saying (sorry) is that Mercedes is making great inroads into Buick's market (GLA/CLA), Chevy's market (SMART) and GMC's market (Sprinter) but not so great at the core business that they're known for. 

 

 

Stated as such, I would be inclined to agree.

 

Just for fun, take out the sales of the GLA/CLA and Mercedes sees a modest 0.7% decline. Since I still believe the CLA probably stole a few sales from the C-Class, they'd probably be just about even for the year with relatively stagnant growth through the rest of the line-up. Still, that's better than Cadillac could manage and nearly 300k sales for year. The S-Class, E-Class, C-Class alone nearly outsell Cadillac's entire line-up.

Edited by blackviper8891

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296142 29842

 

 

Cadillac is not perfect, yet with all the changes they have gone through over the last 4-6 years, they have come a long way in a short time and the most recent changes have not affected them as much as some people would like everyone to think. With 8 auto lines down double digits, saying MB is the worlds best and can not be faulted I have to raise the BS flag. You have 5 or 6 with my missed GLA sales that have double digit growth, then you have growth in the van and sub compact eco car area but over all MB is not perfect auto company many like to say.

 

For all that GM has done since 2007, they have really made some impressive gains.

 

I think what Dfelt is inelegantly saying (sorry) is that Mercedes is making great inroads into Buick's market (GLA/CLA), Chevy's market (SMART) and GMC's market (Sprinter) but not so great at the core business that they're known for. 

 

 

Stated as such, I would be inclined to agree.

 

Just for fun, taking out the sales of the GLA/CLA and Mercedes sees a modest 0.7% decline. Since I still believe the CLA probably stole a few sales from the C-Class, they'd probably be just about even for the year with relatively stagnant growth through the rest of the line-up. Still, that's better than Cadillac could manage and nearly 300k sales for year.

 

But what is it if you drop smart and sprinter too?  (I'd also argue against B-Class, but that is insignificant at this point). Mercedes Benz is competing outside their "box" so to speak.  Cadillac is never going to get to the volume Mercedes does unless they fold Buick, the Spark, and the GMC commercial vans into the Cadillac lineup.  Since that isn't going to happen ever, there is no point in comparing the overall numbers of Cadillac and Mercedes.

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296142 29842

 

 

Cadillac is not perfect, yet with all the changes they have gone through over the last 4-6 years, they have come a long way in a short time and the most recent changes have not affected them as much as some people would like everyone to think. With 8 auto lines down double digits, saying MB is the worlds best and can not be faulted I have to raise the BS flag. You have 5 or 6 with my missed GLA sales that have double digit growth, then you have growth in the van and sub compact eco car area but over all MB is not perfect auto company many like to say.

 

For all that GM has done since 2007, they have really made some impressive gains.

 

I think what Dfelt is inelegantly saying (sorry) is that Mercedes is making great inroads into Buick's market (GLA/CLA), Chevy's market (SMART) and GMC's market (Sprinter) but not so great at the core business that they're known for. 

 

 

Stated as such, I would be inclined to agree.

 

Just for fun, taking out the sales of the GLA/CLA and Mercedes sees a modest 0.7% decline. Since I still believe the CLA probably stole a few sales from the C-Class, they'd probably be just about even for the year with relatively stagnant growth through the rest of the line-up. Still, that's better than Cadillac could manage and nearly 300k sales for year.

 

But what is it if you drop smart and sprinter too?  (I'd also argue against B-Class, but that is insignificant at this point). Mercedes Benz is competing outside their "box" so to speak.  Cadillac is never going to get to the volume Mercedes does unless they fold Buick, the Spark, and the GMC commercial vans into the Cadillac lineup.  Since that isn't going to happen ever, there is no point in comparing the overall numbers of Cadillac and Mercedes.

 

 

I never included the Smart/Sprinter in the numbers I quoted, just the Mercedes brand itself.

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296142 29842

 

 

Cadillac is not perfect, yet with all the changes they have gone through over the last 4-6 years, they have come a long way in a short time and the most recent changes have not affected them as much as some people would like everyone to think. With 8 auto lines down double digits, saying MB is the worlds best and can not be faulted I have to raise the BS flag. You have 5 or 6 with my missed GLA sales that have double digit growth, then you have growth in the van and sub compact eco car area but over all MB is not perfect auto company many like to say.

 

For all that GM has done since 2007, they have really made some impressive gains.

 

I think what Dfelt is inelegantly saying (sorry) is that Mercedes is making great inroads into Buick's market (GLA/CLA), Chevy's market (SMART) and GMC's market (Sprinter) but not so great at the core business that they're known for. 

 

 

Stated as such, I would be inclined to agree.

 

Just for fun, taking out the sales of the GLA/CLA and Mercedes sees a modest 0.7% decline. Since I still believe the CLA probably stole a few sales from the C-Class, they'd probably be just about even for the year with relatively stagnant growth through the rest of the line-up. Still, that's better than Cadillac could manage and nearly 300k sales for year.

 

But what is it if you drop smart and sprinter too?  (I'd also argue against B-Class, but that is insignificant at this point). Mercedes Benz is competing outside their "box" so to speak.  Cadillac is never going to get to the volume Mercedes does unless they fold Buick, the Spark, and the GMC commercial vans into the Cadillac lineup.  Since that isn't going to happen ever, there is no point in comparing the overall numbers of Cadillac and Mercedes.

 

 

Then Mercedes-Benz would still be ahead. BV's number are Mercedes-Benz (the brand) sales for the year. Also, Sprinter and smart only made a small chunk of Mercedes-Benz's sales for the year.

 

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I thought the C-class could get to 10,000 per month, perhaps in spring when car buying picks up, and they have AMG and a diesel on the way.  I do think it will close the gap a bit more with the 3-series.  I can see near 100,000 C-class sales for 2015.

 

S-class dominates its segment.   The E-class is their oldest car (and oldest in the segment), even with the refresh, that chassis has been on sale since 2010 model year, but they still sell a decent number of them.  A new one comes in spring 2016 which will address that.

 

When you look at the Mercedes sales in 2008 compared to now, they have had solid growth.

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Neither here nor there overall, but to be specific; smart is smart but of course, the sprinter IS a 'mercedes'.
Not sure why it's broken out separately in the totals.

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...there is no point in comparing the overall numbers of Cadillac and Mercedes.

How about vs. another corporate full-line manufacturer, such as GM then? ;)

 

MBUSA :: +  6.7%

GMCo  ::  +19%

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Cadillac is not perfect, yet with all the changes they have gone through over the last 4-6 years, they have come a long way in a short time and the most recent changes have not affected them as much as some people would like everyone to think. With 8 auto lines down double digits, saying MB is the worlds best and can not be faulted I have to raise the BS flag. You have 5 or 6 with my missed GLA sales that have double digit growth, then you have growth in the van and sub compact eco car area but over all MB is not perfect auto company many like to say.

 

For all that GM has done since 2007, they have really made some impressive gains.

 

I think what Dfelt is inelegantly saying (sorry) is that Mercedes is making great inroads into Buick's market (GLA/CLA), Chevy's market (SMART) and GMC's market (Sprinter) but not so great at the core business that they're known for. 

 

Thank you Drew, I have always been told that I am a bull in a china shop and never the best at clearly stating the marketing / business case. You hit the nail on the head for me. Thank you for the clarification.

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Neither here nor there overall, but to be specific; smart is smart but of course, the sprinter IS a 'mercedes'.

Not sure why it's broken out separately in the totals.

 

I think that Mercedes treats it as a separate brand.

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Neither here nor there overall, but to be specific; smart is smart but of course, the sprinter IS a 'mercedes'.

Not sure why it's broken out separately in the totals.

 

I think that Mercedes treats it as a separate brand.

 

 

Well then should the Freightliner version be counted too?

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How could 'Mercedes' possibly justify calling the "Mercedes Sprinter" a different brand??
 

Problem is, they sort of backed themselves into a corner; eager to trade on the good will coattails of the 'MB' name, they took a tin box Freightliner, rebadged it, and now they CAN'T omit it from sales totals or shared slips on the dealer lot. It's a thorn to the sides of the image-hucksters @ MBUSA.

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Neither here nor there overall, but to be specific; smart is smart but of course, the sprinter IS a 'mercedes'.

Not sure why it's broken out separately in the totals.

 

I think that Mercedes treats it as a separate brand.

 

 

Well then should the Freightliner version be counted too?

 

No that would be considered as Freightliner (Trying to use Mercedes-Benz logic.. hurting my head).

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How could 'Mercedes' possibly justify calling the "Mercedes Sprinter" a different brand??

 

Problem is, they sort of backed themselves into a corner; eager to trade on the good will coattails of the 'MB' name, they took a tin box Freightliner, rebadged it, and now they CAN'T omit it from sales totals or shared slips on the dealer lot. It's a thorn to the sides of the image-hucksters @ MBUSA.

 

Not really arguing with the logic, it probably ought to be included.

 

However, it should be noted that the Sprinter is all Mercedes. The Freightliner is the rebadged variant. Also, having said that, it is by far the nicest cargo van I've ever driven save for some cross-wind instability (though MB has since added a system aid to help with it). It was the strangest source of driving enjoyment I've ever found...

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      Extras for the G-Class: two exclusive equipment packages
      There are so many variants for the new G-Class that it is extremely rare for any two cars to be exactly alike. This wide range of equipment options is made possible by the fact that features from the designo manufaktur range have already been integrated into the standard equipment variants.
      Passengers are accommodated on seats in Lugano leather in Black, Nut Brown or Macchiato Beige. There is furthermore a choice of two top-class equipment packages: Exclusive Interior and Exclusive Interior Plus. The Exclusive Interior is available in a range of seven colors. Three of these are elegant combinations of nappa leather in black and one of the designo manufaktur colors Platinum White, Yacht Blue or Classic Red. The package also includes a black designo roof liner in DINAMICA microfiber, along with air vents in silvershadow. The Exclusive Interior Plus comprises additional elements in Nappa leather such as the door trim, sections of the center console, the instrument panel and all the upholstery. A particular feature here is the seat design with dynamic diamond- pattern quilting. With this package, customers have a choice between the designo shades of Black, Espresso Brown and Classic Red. For the first time it is also possible to order a light-colored interior throughout, in Macchiato Beige – encompassing everything from the flooring to the roof liner.
      An off-road legend since 1979
      The G-Class is the top model among luxury off-road vehicles. It is not only by far the passenger car model series with the longest production run in the history of Mercedes-Benz, but also the forefather of all SUVs to bear the three- pointed star – this is why all Mercedes off-road models feature the upper-case G in their name.
      What began in 1972 with a collaboration agreement between the then Daimler- Benz AG and Steyr-Daimler-Puch in the Austrian city of Graz is now a story peppered with superlatives and significant milestones. As it was back then, the G-Class is still built largely by hand in Graz.
      Right from the very first design, this was no ordinary cross-country vehicle. Product planners, designers and engineers designed a vehicle that offered a compelling combination of reliability, robust build and superb off-road performance, which nevertheless appealed to customers as a fully-fledged, comfortable and, above all, safe, exclusive automobile for recreational purposes.
      At the time of its market launch, in the spring of 1979, it was available with a choice of four engine variants covering a performance spectrum of 53 kW / 72 hp to 115 kW / 156 hp. Customers had the option of a Cabriolet with a short wheelbase or Station Wagon models with short or long wheelbase. In 1989, the vehicles in the model series 463 marked the beginning of an evolutionary process for the off-roader that was not just about keeping pace with technical progress. It was an evolution that also brought a steadily expanding fanbase and emphasised its character as an exclusive vehicle for any occasion. And, since 1993, a vehicle with an official name: the G-Class.
      The 25th anniversary of the G-Class was marked by the arrival of a very special model on the market, honed by Mercedes-AMG: the G 55 AMG Kompressor. Its eight-cylinder power unit (350 kW / 476 hp, 700 newton meters of torque) gave the robust off-roader an unprecedented level of performance and demonstrated  the tremendous potential of the G-Class.
      The G-Class's 30th birthday was celebrated in 2009 with a series of new equipment features, enhancing primarily the comfort and exclusivity of the interior. The ergonomically optimized front seats offered more support, while new designs and climatized seats made the veteran beast even more luxurious. Sales of the G-Class have increased continually ever since. Thanks to the  strong growth rates, the forefather of the SUV achieved a new sales record in 2016, with almost 20,000 units being sold within a year.
      New AMG engines, a markedly expanded range of appointments, an even higher-quality interior, careful exterior modifications and safety features such as DISTRONIC Plus as well as the parking aid PARKTRONIC ensured further enhancement of the off-roader in 2012. A year later, Mercedes-Benz expanded the product portfolio with the G 63 AMG 6x6: a three-axle off-road vehicle that combined the "best of three worlds", featuring as it did all the developments of the new G-Class generation, the robustness of heavy off-highway vehicles and the superior engine technology of Mercedes-AMG.
      The G550 4x4² added not only a luxurious interior to the equation, but also ground clearance of 45 centimeters and impressive on-road performance. Since 2015 designo manufaktur has offered customers the possibility to individualize their G with exclusive equipment variants. The extraordinary G 650 Landaulet made its own very special mark in 2017. It was the first of its type to emerge under the Mercedes-Maybach name and only 99 vehicles were built. With its superlative V12 engine, portal axles, electrically operated fabric top and exclusive equipment specification in the rear compartment, this  variant of the "G" was aimed at customers who want their open-top driving to be as exclusive as it is stylish.
      The summer of 2017 saw the 300,000th G-Class roll off the assembly line in Graz – a Mercedes-Benz G 500 in designo Mauritius Blue Metallic with black leather seats and contrasting white topstitching. Equipped with a range of off- road features including all-terrain tires mounted on black 16-inch rims and a sturdy roof rack, the anniversary vehicle embarked this summer on a new adventure. G-Class fans around the world determined the vehicle specification by voting for their favorite equipment and appointments on the official
      G-Class Facebook page. The future road trips of the 300,000th G-Class can also be followed on social networks.
      The new G-Class will be celebrating its world premiere at the 2018 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, and will go on sale in the U.S. by late 2018.
      Please note this information is preliminary; additional information will be provided at the time of the product reveal in January.

      View full article
    • By Drew Dowdell
      Mercedes-Benz released a preview of the 2019 Mercedes-Benz G-Class due to be released at the 2018 North American International Auto Show in Detroit.  The images, all of the interior, show a significantly updated G-Class with an interior now at the level customers expect from Mercedes-Benz.  Critics of the current G-Class point out the severely outdated build quality of the current model that does not fit its high price tag.
       
      The new G-Class gets the double-wide 12.3 inch displays found on other Mercedes-Benz models like the S-Class and E-Class. New steering wheel controls respond to finger gestures similar in operation to the screen of a smartphone. Much of the rest of the interior switchgear is lifted straight out of Mercedes-Benz's other models, while the seats and trim finally get the plushness expected at a $123,000 price level.
       
      If you're expecting the G-Class to look different from the current model, don't.  The exterior will largely look the same as the current model. The new G-Class will go on sale late 2018.
      Additional details will be released as we approach the North American International Auto Show in Detroit starting January 15th.
      Source: Mercedes-Benz Media Relations
       
      Press Release on Page 2


      It is an off-road legend and the ultimate benchmark for so many fans of cross-country driving: the G-Class. Since 1979 more than 300,000 vehicles have allowed their owners to experience adventures that would have been unachievable with any other vehicle. Outwardly, the "G" has changed very little. But in fact this  very  special  off-roader  has  constantly  reinvented itself. With its completely updated interior and numerous new features, the G-Class has now undergone the  most  significant  transformation  of  its almost 40-year career, in technical as well as stylistic terms - while staying  true to itself.
      Iconic elements continue to serve very specific purposes, now as then, and to give the G-Class its unique appearance. All these are still to be found in the new G-Class: the distinctive door handles and the characteristic closing sound, the robust exterior protective strip, the exposed spare wheel on the rear door and the prominent indicator lights. It is extraordinary features like these that combine with the off-roader's angular lines to define its special look.
      Interior: as luxurious as it is authentic
      That this is a contemporary interpretation of a legend is also evident, for example, from the car's clear, geometric lines: climbing aboard the G-Class reveals styling elements from the exterior transposed into the interior. The shape of the round headlamps, for instance, which is reflected in the air vents on either side. Or the design of the iconic indicators, found again in the shape of the loudspeakers.
      Hallmarks of the G-Class include the grab handle in front of the front passenger and the chrome-highlighted switches for the differential locks, positioned in clear view. Both have been meticulously optimized and retained as characteristic features.
      G-Class drivers are able to control the full infotainment system without taking their hands off the steering wheel. The touch-sensitive Touch Control Buttons on the steering wheel respond to swiping motions in the same way as the surface of a smartphone. Thanks to haptic impulses and additional feedback from the onboard speakers, the driver can use the touchpad without looking away from the road. The input options are rounded off by shortcut keys in front of the Controller for frequently accessed operating tasks, and by the optional control array for the driving assistance systems above the rotary light switch. The driver sits up close to the windscreen and enjoys good all-round visibility from behind the wheel.
      The very clearly laid-out and completely redesigned instrument panel features timeless tube-look analogue dials as standard. In other words, fans of classic round instruments will certainly not be disappointed in the new G-Class. As in the new E and S-Class, an alternative instrument panel in the form of a large display screen showing virtual instruments in the driver's direct field of vision and a central display above the center console is available as an option. Two 12.3-inch displays blend visually into a wide-screen cockpit beneath a shared glass cover. Drivers can choose between three different styles for the displays – "Classic," "Sport" and "Progressive" – and also configure relevant information and views according to their individual needs.
      High-quality materials and added comfort
      With its unmistakable character and high-quality appointments, the G-Class has always managed to combine off-road capability and luxury in a particularly harmonious way. Even in its standard specification, the G-Class's timeless and authentic open-pore wood trim gives it an air of classical elegance. Its stylish details include the generous use of high-quality metal or carbon fiber trim, and its leather seats.
      "Every G-Class must be put to the test on the Schöckl." And this was the motto that headed the list of requirement specifications when it came to redesigning this classic among off-roaders. It refers to the Graz plant's local mountain, used by Mercedes-Benz for its hard – and some say even merciless - testing, and which each off-roader must be able to conquer. Which is why every "G" bears a certification mark in the form of a "Schöckl" badge at the base of its B-pillar.
      The doors are very solid, clear evidence of that hallmark "G" functionality. The stowage space concept has been thoroughly overhauled, with numerous new
      storage areas ensuring that everything has a home. Under the armrest, for example, is an illuminated compartment for small items. In front of the touchpad in the center console are two removable cup holders. The rear doors are each capable of accommodating a 1-liter water bottle. The rear bench seat has a freestanding backrest, so allowing maximum variability and better visibility through the rear side windows.
      The standard audio system features seven loudspeakers. The Burmester® surround sound system with 16 speakers and a 590 watt amplifier with Digital Sound Processing is available as optional equipment.
      The revised dimensions of the now larger G-Class do not only benefit the driver, but also the passengers in the second row.
      The most important data at a glance:
      Description
      Difference
      Legroom - front
      + 1.5 in (38 mm)
      Legroom - rear
      + 5.9 in (150 mm)
      Shoulder width - front
      + 1.5 in (38 mm)
      Shoulder width - rear
      + 1.1 in (27 mm)
      Elbow room - front
      + 2.7 in (68 mm)
      Elbow room - rear
      + 2.2 in (56 mm)
      The rear seats can be folded down to 60, 40 or 100 percent. The seats in the G-Class are equipped as standard with numerous convenience functions such as the Memory function for the driver's seat, seat heating front and rear, and luxury head restraints in the front. As well as the special multicontour seats, features range from massage functions, climatized seats, fast seat heating and electrically adjustable lumbar supports for the driver and front passenger. The side sections of the seat cushions and backrests of the active multicontour  seats include integrated air chambers that fill or empty on a continuous basis according to the driving dynamics, so providing better support for the seating positions of driver and front passenger and, for example, offering more lateral support during cornering. The front seats of the Active Multicontour Seat package are recommended by experts from the German spinal health organization "Aktion Gesunder Rücken e.V.".
      Extras for the G-Class: two exclusive equipment packages
      There are so many variants for the new G-Class that it is extremely rare for any two cars to be exactly alike. This wide range of equipment options is made possible by the fact that features from the designo manufaktur range have already been integrated into the standard equipment variants.
      Passengers are accommodated on seats in Lugano leather in Black, Nut Brown or Macchiato Beige. There is furthermore a choice of two top-class equipment packages: Exclusive Interior and Exclusive Interior Plus. The Exclusive Interior is available in a range of seven colors. Three of these are elegant combinations of nappa leather in black and one of the designo manufaktur colors Platinum White, Yacht Blue or Classic Red. The package also includes a black designo roof liner in DINAMICA microfiber, along with air vents in silvershadow. The Exclusive Interior Plus comprises additional elements in Nappa leather such as the door trim, sections of the center console, the instrument panel and all the upholstery. A particular feature here is the seat design with dynamic diamond- pattern quilting. With this package, customers have a choice between the designo shades of Black, Espresso Brown and Classic Red. For the first time it is also possible to order a light-colored interior throughout, in Macchiato Beige – encompassing everything from the flooring to the roof liner.
      An off-road legend since 1979
      The G-Class is the top model among luxury off-road vehicles. It is not only by far the passenger car model series with the longest production run in the history of Mercedes-Benz, but also the forefather of all SUVs to bear the three- pointed star – this is why all Mercedes off-road models feature the upper-case G in their name.
      What began in 1972 with a collaboration agreement between the then Daimler- Benz AG and Steyr-Daimler-Puch in the Austrian city of Graz is now a story peppered with superlatives and significant milestones. As it was back then, the G-Class is still built largely by hand in Graz.
      Right from the very first design, this was no ordinary cross-country vehicle. Product planners, designers and engineers designed a vehicle that offered a compelling combination of reliability, robust build and superb off-road performance, which nevertheless appealed to customers as a fully-fledged, comfortable and, above all, safe, exclusive automobile for recreational purposes.
      At the time of its market launch, in the spring of 1979, it was available with a choice of four engine variants covering a performance spectrum of 53 kW / 72 hp to 115 kW / 156 hp. Customers had the option of a Cabriolet with a short wheelbase or Station Wagon models with short or long wheelbase. In 1989, the vehicles in the model series 463 marked the beginning of an evolutionary process for the off-roader that was not just about keeping pace with technical progress. It was an evolution that also brought a steadily expanding fanbase and emphasised its character as an exclusive vehicle for any occasion. And, since 1993, a vehicle with an official name: the G-Class.
      The 25th anniversary of the G-Class was marked by the arrival of a very special model on the market, honed by Mercedes-AMG: the G 55 AMG Kompressor. Its eight-cylinder power unit (350 kW / 476 hp, 700 newton meters of torque) gave the robust off-roader an unprecedented level of performance and demonstrated  the tremendous potential of the G-Class.
      The G-Class's 30th birthday was celebrated in 2009 with a series of new equipment features, enhancing primarily the comfort and exclusivity of the interior. The ergonomically optimized front seats offered more support, while new designs and climatized seats made the veteran beast even more luxurious. Sales of the G-Class have increased continually ever since. Thanks to the  strong growth rates, the forefather of the SUV achieved a new sales record in 2016, with almost 20,000 units being sold within a year.
      New AMG engines, a markedly expanded range of appointments, an even higher-quality interior, careful exterior modifications and safety features such as DISTRONIC Plus as well as the parking aid PARKTRONIC ensured further enhancement of the off-roader in 2012. A year later, Mercedes-Benz expanded the product portfolio with the G 63 AMG 6x6: a three-axle off-road vehicle that combined the "best of three worlds", featuring as it did all the developments of the new G-Class generation, the robustness of heavy off-highway vehicles and the superior engine technology of Mercedes-AMG.
      The G550 4x4² added not only a luxurious interior to the equation, but also ground clearance of 45 centimeters and impressive on-road performance. Since 2015 designo manufaktur has offered customers the possibility to individualize their G with exclusive equipment variants. The extraordinary G 650 Landaulet made its own very special mark in 2017. It was the first of its type to emerge under the Mercedes-Maybach name and only 99 vehicles were built. With its superlative V12 engine, portal axles, electrically operated fabric top and exclusive equipment specification in the rear compartment, this  variant of the "G" was aimed at customers who want their open-top driving to be as exclusive as it is stylish.
      The summer of 2017 saw the 300,000th G-Class roll off the assembly line in Graz – a Mercedes-Benz G 500 in designo Mauritius Blue Metallic with black leather seats and contrasting white topstitching. Equipped with a range of off- road features including all-terrain tires mounted on black 16-inch rims and a sturdy roof rack, the anniversary vehicle embarked this summer on a new adventure. G-Class fans around the world determined the vehicle specification by voting for their favorite equipment and appointments on the official
      G-Class Facebook page. The future road trips of the 300,000th G-Class can also be followed on social networks.
      The new G-Class will be celebrating its world premiere at the 2018 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, and will go on sale in the U.S. by late 2018.
      Please note this information is preliminary; additional information will be provided at the time of the product reveal in January.
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