The all-new Mercedes-Benz G-Class lineup is complete with the addition of the “entry-level” G 350 d diesel variant.
Available since June with two V8 gasoline powertrains (the G500 and Mercedes-AMG G63), the new G-Class finally gets a diesel engine that will be both the cheapest and most economical variant in the current lineup.
The G350d uses the new OM 656 straight-six turbo diesel engine with a displacement of 2.9 liters that delivers 286 PS (282 hp) at 3,400-4,600 rpm and 600 Nm (442 lb-ft) of torque at 1,200-3,200 rpm. Linked to the 9G-Tronic nine-speed automatic transmission, the Euro 6d-TEMP-compliant six-cylinder diesel averages 9.8-9.6 liters/100 km (28.8-29.4 mpg UK) and 259-252 g/km CO2 — according to NEDC.
That makes it the most fuel-efficient G-Class of all time, thanks in part to the gliding function available in Eco mode. It’s also the most powerful diesel-equipped G-Class ever. The peak torque, for example, is almost the same as that of the 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 in the G500.
Mercedes-Benz says the new engine will set new standards in the G-Class as far as performance is concerned, both on and off the road. The G350d sprints from 0 to 100 km/h (0-62 mph) in 7.4 seconds and reaches a top speed of 199 km/h (123 mph).
Comfort stands to gain as well, with the new diesel-powered G-Class producing less noise and vibrations in the cabin than its V6 predecessor. To help achieve that, the engine mounts of the engine are actively controlled for the first time.
As for off-road performance, the new transfer case is flange-mounted directly to the transmission and is designed to send 40 percent of the drive torque to the front axle and 60 percent to the rear axle. Obviously, the G350d also features low-range off-road reduction gear for driving on difficult terrain.
The automaker also says the new G-Class diesel is better equipped than its predecessor. Standard features include leather seats, Artico man-made leather trim covering the instrument panel, open-pore wood accents, Dynamic Select drive mode selector, Active Braking Assist, and other driver assistance systems.
The 2019 G350d will go on sale in January 2019 in Europe and other markets (not the U.S., though) and will arrive in dealerships in spring. Prices will be announced closer to launch.