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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Greetings folks and friends,

I thank you ahead of time for your time in reading my post. In advance: you're a gentleman and a scholar for having done so.

My name is Patrick, and I'm considering a G500/G55 AMG.

I have been a Land Rover Discovery enthusiast for many, many years. I first owned a 2000, and then eventually picked up a 2004 HSE, which I've put a lot (passion and money) into. At this point, I believe it's the finest example of the Discovery to be beheld in the US of A. I don't mean that arrogantly: I simply have rebuilt it nearly from the ground up, including-but-by-no-means limited to a new engine.

Goofy, I know... That was the old me, who worked like a dog, and had money coming out of my ears. Now I run an automated business. It provides me with decent income, but my priorities are vastly shifted. I no longer care about ever making the "mid sixes" again- I just want to live and be free. So: I won't be spending $120,000 on a G55, because I see that $120,000 in a whole new light, now.

However, One thing will never change: I wish to pilot myself, my wife, and our children around in a vehicle that is virtually bulletproof. Above all, I wish to have a vehicle that's worth my efforts, blood, sweat, and tears. Something that I can drive for 10... 15... or 20 years if I wanted to.

In retrospect, I don't think the 2004 Discovery was the best vehicle to spend tens of thousands of dollars on restoring. It simply isn't that good of a vehicle, objectively. I'd drive mine to hell and back, but the bottom line is that it's not the best example of human accomplishment - and why in God's name would we waste time driving something less than perfect, if given the chance?

So.... anyway....

In March, I sold my older 2000 Discovery, which was our "beater" (I hadn't put more than $10,000 or so into repairs into that one, which isn't very much, eh... 'Disco-wise', G*d D*mn 'em), and I bought a 2012 Land Rover LR4.

The aught-twelve LR4 is my idea of perfection. It's probably not as good as the Range Rover, but it's by far the nicest thing I've ever driven (other than, I guess, an Aston Martin V12 Vantage that I helped win for my old CEO very briefly).

The LR4 is incredible. However, I feel like Frodo upon returning to The Shire after Mordor.

I'm not content. My soul is not at peace.

I think it's because the LR4's styling and lines don't get me going. It's not a sleek sports wagen like the Range, but it's not a boxy "stick a bayonette in your chest and fire off a round to help with yanking it out again" off-roader like the Disco 2 that gave it its name.

It's.... tame.... but at the same time, unsophisticated.

So: I am considering a G-Wagen. To me, it is the embodiment of the balance between "bayonette" aggressiveness and "lady on the town" sophistication. I don't expect it to handle and take bumps like the LR4, and I don't want it or need it to. I have no problem muscling a steering wheel around - my Disco steering wheel, I'm sure, is much more stiff.

HOWEVER: I've never sat in one, let alone, driven it. Every fantasy I have which includes the G500/55 has been completely fabricated in my mind. It's all in my mind.

Obviously, step 1 is to go drive one. However: First, I want to talk to you guys.

I trust you to open up and be vulnerable about the G's faults. God knows I'm ready to admit Land Rover's. As much as I love them... they have their faults.

Well, Friends,

I'll pass you the mic. Please: tell me what you think of these vehicles. I'd probably buy a used one with 30,000 - 50,000 miles on it, and plan on putting $5k/year or so into it until I felt like it was as close to "mint" as possible.

So friends.... please: tell me your thoughts.

I meant what I said: if you made it this far, you're a gentleman and a scholar. The best reply will get a cigar - and i mean that as well.

God keep you,

Patrick (Pat)
 

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2013 G 63 AMG
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327 Posts
We all bought them and like talking about them enough to sign up for forums like this one, so that tells you something. Only you can decide if you will like the G-Class, so drive over to your nearest Mercedes dealer and take a test drive. Nothing else will answer your questions.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I disagree, Jimmy ;)

I have several thousand posts on a Land Rover Discovery forum from throughout the years, and - for Rovers at least - I believe there are only a certain kind of person for whom the vehicles are a good match for.

Part of my post's goal, is to find out if that's the case with the Geweher-Wagen.

Pat
 

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'91 300GE; 87 190E
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36 Posts
I drive a 1991 300GE and I'm going to try to be completely honest with you.

I'm 21 years old and I'm good with my money, and I saved up a long time to get myself a 300GE. I bought the truck because the design is timeless, the simplicity is beautiful, and I have faith that the engine will last me a lifetime.

I have always been a Mercedes fan. My first car was a 1985 190E, which treated me so well. The only problem is that my girlfriend lives on a farm and I ripped open my exhaust pipe every time I went to visit, so I decided to get a G-Class earlier in my life than I had anticipated.

The G is always ranked within the top 5 off-road vehicles, no matter who the critic is. There is no disputing that it is untouchable off road. On-road, however, be prepared for an unforgiving fuel expenditure. Everything about the G is captivating, from the rawness of the driving experience to the sheer power of the seating position and suspension. The truck is rigid and you really connect with any terrain that you drive on. I would say that if you have an appreciation for something like that, there is no other vehicle for you to buy.

It's not comparable to your LR4, Discovery, Range Rover, or anything else on the road, to be honest, save for perhaps the Defender. Understand that you're driving a rare and envious indicator of class and bad-assness. Heads will turn, it's rare that people recognize the prestige of the vehicle, but when you find someone who does, you can immediately trust their judgement.

The best or nothing. Right?
 

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2000 G500 NMLE
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I disagree, Jimmy ;)

Part of my post's goal, is to find out if that's the case with the Geweher-Wagen.

Pat
What is a "Geweher-Wagen"?? No such vehicle on this forum.
 

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2005 G500
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I've had my 2005 G500 for a year and 15k miles. No issues other than some interior trim pieces. I come from 10 yrs of owning 5 different Range Rover Classics. The longest one I owned was 4 yrs and the shortest was 3 weeks. On my last one, a 95 SWB, I finally got to the perfection state that your disco was at. I had it detailed as a crowning achievement. Then it went up in flames. Yes, actually.

Land Rovers are great vehicles when sorted out but they just don't have the that built to last feeling of a G.

An 04 Disco was the end of an era for US Land Rovers IMO but lets be honest, it was a crap shoot as to whether you'd get a lemon or not. LR4 is a great vehicle, I've spent a lot of time in them and reliability is leagues ahead. A G won't have the great ride of Classics or Disco's but it still has live axles and is more capable if you use it as it was intended.

I bought my G from the original owner w/ a novel of receipts (which could be taken as a good or bad thing) and 10k miles left on the factory warranty. I'd suggest you do the same if you decide to pull the trigger. I know my truck has a higher propensity to break down than say a 461 but as a daily driver it's the perfect mix of a timeless design.
 

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2004 G500 & 2017 G63
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Welcome to the forums.

I will say that I love my G; a 2004 G500. I bought it used in order to save money - I simply couldn't justify 125,000 usd or more for a new model. I also, based on opinions here and information found here, figured the sweet spot for model years was 2004-2006. The only thing I wish is to have found my vehicle one model year newer as the 2005s picked up side curtain airbags. Apart from that, there is nothing I would change about mine (well, sure, I would take 50 miles per gallon but that clearly isn't happening).

I bought one having never driven in one or even sat in one. The internet can give you a lot of info and more than enough to have a very good idea of what one of these would be like. I would describe it as an extremely solid vehicle albeit heavy feeling and a bit 'ponderous' to drive. That said, it has a pile of pickup/torque and never feels slow. But it definitely feels 'rooted'. It doesn't take much getting used to.

I posted a review after having done a bit over 10,000km as per here and those thoughts still hold true

http://www.benzworld.org/forums/g-class/1515199-g500-2004-first-impressions-11-250km.html

The only thing that is annoying is the tendency (for me) to run into door lock issues. I have had the driver side door handle mechanism break and currently have issues with both rear passenger doors that will require fixing/replacing. Thats about the biggest annoyance. Everything else is great. I defnitely would not sell mine to get anything else out there - the only contender would be a Land Rover Defender 110 wagon but they are not available in North America.
 

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2013 G63 AMG (Past: 2007 G55 AMG)
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Your story is eerily similar to mine. My wife drives a 11' RR HSE and I wanted to move out of my 09' H2 and into something a little more sophisticated. I was very close to pulling the trigger on a 2012 LR4, but changed my mind last minute when I just wasn't in love with the look of it (drove like a dream and very comfortable). My wife suggested I try the G-class, so I test drove them and fell in love with a 2007 G55 AMG. Test drive will tell it all.
 

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2003 G500 - Tectite Grey Metallic
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Pat,
Driving around in a Gwagon I can tell you that it is like driving no other car/SUV. I can understand your love with Disco, but the G is in a league of its own, but is also similar to your beloved Disco. So, you will feel comfortable and feel right at home owning a G. That being said, here is my honest opinion - Look for model years 2004 and up. I heard that model year 2002 (the first year G was shipped to US) had a lot of electrical problems. I own a 2003 and do not have electrical issues, but had to replace both my front window motors. Also, recently I have been getting a warninng message "TC Neutral" which implies that my transfer case is in neutral! This is normally in High position and can be switched to Low. Having TC stuck in Neutral can get you stranded in some remote places:crybaby2: I have to get this fixed asap. Model years 2004 and newer have this TC gear upgraded with a metal to avoid this situation and also have much more reliable window motors. The G's are built solid like a bank vault and should be a good buy. $5K a year...every year will get you a lot of goodies and can put your G over the top. I say go drive G500 and G55 and see which one you like. Both are extremely reliable, head turners, and awesome off road vehicles :thumbsup: G55 has a lot more HP and torque. If I have an option today, I would probably buy a G55.
 

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future G55/63
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Having driven a few G's on overnights (2005 G55k, 2009 G55k, and 550) and currently owning Discovery models 1996, 2004 and now LR3, the G feels more like the 1996 Discovery which also had the recirculating ball design. The 2000-2004 Discovery does not have this design. To me the recirculating is superior in durability. The Series II 2004 handles better on the roads than the series 1 Discovery but it also has many more electrical things to be concerned with.

While it's overall comfort and layout are the peak of Discovery style, the earlier models were better in some ways. The G retains some of these simpler and more robust designs while being built better overall. This is one of the main things I like about the G. It's essentially a better Discovery. I can't really compare it to the Defender because the practical use of space is also nearly identical to the Discovery whereas the Defender 90 is too small and 110 too long.

Cost wise, it's too bad the Land Rover is less reliable because otherwise, it's really one of the very best value in terms of it's capability, cargo space, versatility, and comfort.

If you have become dependent on the cargo space of the lr4, then the G will leave you wanting for flush flat floor without having to remove the seats. The lr4 is MUCH quieter inside at highway speed and easier for dealing with cargo of varying shapes and sizes. I also think 5 people fir more easily/comfortably in the lr4, not to mention the rather spacious 3rd row for 7 seating.

Aside from the above, there are of course other differences but the build quality and view from the seats starts to offset deficiencies.

If you were planning to haul a family around on lots of trips, I'm not sure I'd say the G is "better".

The G will probably replace my lr3 someday but for now the lr3 works fine and the cost of invested upgrades compels me to ride it out for a while and enjoy it's merits for a while longer.
 

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Simply don't see how you compare a Landrover with a GWagen. A GWagen is repairable. I'm not aware of Landrovers being repairble to a great extent. And the design speaks for itself. GWagens don't sit on dealers lots for too long. Landrover dealerships give the cars away relatively speaking.
 

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"repairable" ? what on earth do you mean? I have put over 200,000 miles on my 1996 Discovery. It is quite repairable and it has never left me stranded or needed a tow. Maybe I got lucky, but neither of my other land rovers have left me stranded so far either. That's 310,000 miles in 3 vehicles with repaired items but never a "break down".

As for the land rovers sitting on lots, it depends a lot on the model. The newer ones seem to have much less relative resale demand as compared to the earlier models and it's not just about cost. My 2004 Discovery would sell very quickly being that it's the last of the simpler solid axle design and they still had a bit of cool quirky British design before Ford got involved.

This is not to say all things are equally comparable between the Land Rover and G, but in size and practical use, they are almost identical. The interior scale, seating position, view of the land, where my arms rest, and that sort of thing in the G is the only vehicle I've ever felt similar to my Discovery models. NOT the LR3, it is nothing like the G, not in any aspect.

Underneath they almost look the same as well, moreso compared with my Discovery Series 1. Solid axles, ball swivel, radius arms, frame, locking differential, etc (the Disco can be set up to have locking front and rear but comes stock with center lock)

I have even had similar window regulator problems to the G ;)
 

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2005 G500
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I've owned only pre-97 Land Rovers, mostly classic Range Rovers but I did have a 95 p38 and a 96 Disco. The P38 was an electric nightmare and EAS was always an issue until the system was retrofitted. I'll agree with jwest, the 96 disco was the best driving LR I ever had. Maybe it was the 16 inch wheels or the long suspension but I 'd say it was a smoother ride that my G. All that was when it was driving. Rovers are charismatic vehicles but they take some sorting out both in and under them. I have been stranded in LR's many times but I also have in MB's (not the G, though). If I had my last RR (pictured in previous post) and my current G headed out on the same trail I'd trust the G to make it further. Now if both broke down I'd rather work on the Rover because I've been under it more...
 
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