By Paolo Valpolini
On 28 September at its G-Class Experience centre in Graz, Austria, Mercedes-Benz unveiled its new generation G-Class cross-country vehicle in the version designed for military and governmental use, known as series 464. Fitted with a more powerful engine, it is capable to carry a higher payload, while maintaining the same reliability, numerous improvements being also added. Two models were shown during the presentation, the BR06, with a full cabin for four people, and the BR09, a version with a two-person cabin, with a strengthened chassis that allows it to have a much payload. A number of prototypes were used to allow participants to put their hand on the new vehicle, 64 prototypes having been produced to day. EDR On-Line understood that production will start in mid-2022,when the BR461 assembly line will be discontinued, spares for the older version being available for the next 15 years.
The new 464 comes from the comments of the G-Class customers meeting held in 2017, where Mercedes-Benz asked them which improvements they would wish on the actual vehicle. Greater payload, an increase in 24 V power availability, reinforced seats to cope with operators equipped with body armour, fulfilling common EEC standards, and to be fitted with more resistant interiors were in decreasing order of priority the customers’ requests.
The BR06 remains in the 3.6 tonnes class with a 1 tonne payload, while the BR09 has a much higher GVW, 4.9 tonnes, with a 2.5 tonnes payload, and has also a longer wheelbase and a strengthened chassis.
Mobility proved to be further improved, the BR461 being already a considerably high benchmark.
According to company officials a number of Low Rate Initial Production vehicles are being produced for customers, EDR On-Line understanding that some contracts should have already been bagged, although as usual Mercedes-Benz would not confirm.
Much more on this new vehicles in a follow-up article.
Photos by P. Valpolini