The top end of the luxury SUV market keeps edging northwards. Where the prospect of spending six figures on an off-roader once seemed unthinkable, a new class at the top end of the segment has emerged with prices exceeding $200k. And now American buyers will have another choice on their hands with the arrival of the Mercedes-AMG G65.
The flagship model of the Geländewagen range, the G65 is based on Benz's immortal SUV that's been produced in Graz, Austria, since 1979 and (officially) arrived in the US in 2002. But while the G-Class has been offered in a number of specifications even here in America – up to and including the eight-cylinder G63 AMG – the top-of-the-line G65 was kept away from these shores. But now the German automaker has announced it's bringing its ultimate sport-ute to American showrooms.
Distinguishing the G65 from 'lesser' G-Wagens is its 6.0-liter twin-turbo V12 – the same essential unit that already powers the S65 coupe and sedan, SL65 roadster and the Pagani Huayra – producing in this application 621 horsepower and 738 pound-feet of torque. That's said to be enough to shuffle the big ute up to 60 in just 5.3 seconds.
Of course all that power and prestige comes with a price, and as you might have guessed, it's astronomical: $217,900 plus $925 delivery, to be specific. In that ballpark, it'll be tangling with the new Range Rover SVAutobiography and the upcoming Bentley Bentayga. Not even the top-of-the-line, $157k Porsche Cayenne Turbo S wears that high a price tag.
Look for the Mercedes-AMG G65 to reach showrooms in November, by which point we should get more information and photos on the US-spec model, which is set to receive new front and rear bumpers, new wheels and new nameplate with the AMG part shifted to the middle instead of the end. In the meantime, you can scope out the existing Euro-spec model in the gallery above.