Mercedes G-Class review - Practicality, comfort and boot space
It’s not as practical as the dimensions would suggest, while parking the G-Class could be tricky
The old G-Class was very much like the Land Rover Defender, because the size of the cabin didn’t really match the exterior dimensions. While there’s certainly more room in the latest G-Class, it doesn’t offer the same amount of space as the other SUVs in the Mercedes range.
Indeed, while the GLE impresses us with its large cabin and third row of seats, the G-Class feels more intimate and there’s no seven-seat option. In many ways, this is part of the G’s charm – it’s hard to criticise it for staying true to its roots.
There are enough pockets and bins throughout the cabin, including a pair of removable cup-holders in the front, two in the rear, map pockets on the back of the front seats, an overhead sunglasses holder and space for bottles in the door pockets.
The G-Class measures 1,969mm in height, 1,984mm in width (2,187mm including the chunky door mirrors), and 4,873mm in length (including the spare wheel on the back). This makes it almost as long and wide as the Range Rover (5,000mm length and 2,220mm wide including mirrors), but 100mm taller.
Leg room, head room & passenger space
It’s 121mm wider than before, which certainly helps, but the huge centre console restricts the space in the front, while adults sitting three abreast in the back might find it to be a tight squeeze.
Car group tests
- New Mercedes G 350d 2019 review
- New Mercedes-AMG G 63 2018 review
- New Mercedes-AMG G 63 2018 review
- New Mercedes G-Class prototype ride review
- New Mercedes-Maybach G 650 Landaulet 2017 review
Used car tests
On the plus side, there’s a decent amount of headroom throughout the cabin, so you won’t need to remove your riding hat before driving home from the point-to-point. Rear legroom would be best described as adequate, but at least there’s not much of a transmission tunnel to rob the middle seat of foot space.
The boot can swallow 667 litres of luggage with the rear seats in their upright position, extending to 1,246 litres with the 60/40 split-folding bench folded down. In comparison, a Range Rover offers 694 litres with the seats up and 900 litres with the seats down.
It’s a relatively narrow and tall opening with the rear arches robbing the boot of width. The spare wheel makes the side-hinged tailgate feel rather heavy, while access can be a pain if you’ve parked on the street. You just have to hope that nobody parks too close behind you.
Speaking of parking, the G-Class isn’t the easiest vehicle to manoeuvre around congested streets. The commanding driving position helps a little, but you’ll rely on the standard-fit 360-degree camera system when parking.
Predictably, the G-Class is a formidable towing vehicle, with the G 350 d and G 63 offering a 3,500kg braked towing capacity. This places it alongside the likes of the Land Rover Discovery, Range Rover, Mitsubishi Shogun and Toyota Land Cruiser on the list of the best load-pullers – perfect for towing horseboxes, heavy equipment and, in the case of the G 63, a small petrol tanker!
In this review
- 1Mercedes G-Class reviewLife begins at 40 for this motoring icon, with the Mercedes G-Class now better than ever
- 2Engines, performance and driveIt’s still a formidable off-roader, but the G-Class is now more agile on the road, especially in G 63 guise
- 3MPG, CO2 and Running CostsExpensive to buy and to run, especially in the case of the G 63
- 4Interior, design and technologyMercedes has blended old and new to perfection, with a beautifully finished cabin and the latest tech
- 5Practicality, comfort and boot space - currently readingIt’s not as practical as the dimensions would suggest, while parking the G-Class could be tricky
- 6Reliability and SafetyThe G’s quality shines through, but safety and reliability are harder to judge