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Following the G 500 and G 63, the Geländewagen cuts back on two cylinders and spark plus for the G 350 d. The diesel-fueled model makes use of the OM 656 inline-six engine, featuring AdBlue, exhaust gas recirculation, and NANOSLIDE cylinder wall coating to reduce friction losses.

More to the point, Mercedes-Benz makes a case for the most efficient G-Class of them all. The G 350 d has a NEDC combined rating of 9.6 liters per 100 kilometers, all while developing 286 PS (282 horsepower) and 600 Nm (443 pound-feet) from 1,200 to 3,200 rpm. In other words, it also matches the torque developed by the M 176 twin-turbo V8 in the G 500.

Zero to 100 km/h (62 mph) takes 7.4 seconds to accomplish, while top speed is limited to 199 km/h (124 mph). Those who have driven a G-Class know how scary that is, but then again, the G 350 d isn’t a speed demon.

The torque curve of the OM 656 makes the G 350 d an interesting proposition for off-road enthusiasts, making the best out of the low-down torque when the going gets rough. A nine-speed automatic transmission sends 40 percent of the suck-squeeze-bang-blow to the front axle, and if in doubt, the low-range reduction gear is there to save the day.

Each model takes “at least 100 hours” to manufacture according to Mercedes-Benz, which employs Magna Steyr in Graz, Austria for production. The Dynamic Select system offers five drive modes as standard, and at speeds below 5 km/h, the engine mounts “are set to soft to optimally dampen the transfer of torsional vibrations to the ladder-type frame.”

Push the loud pedal some more, and the two mounts stiff up. Also worthy of mention, the G 350 d is now available with the Exclusive Interior Plus option, translating to diamond quilting by Designo Manufaktur.

More than 300,000 models rolled off the assembly line in Graz, proving the popularity of the G-Class throughout the ages despite the prohibitive price. The story started 40 years ago when Daimler-Benz AG and Steyr-Daimler-Puch signed an agreement to produce the Geländewagen.
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