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G Wagon Years To Avoid

The Mercedes-Benz G-Class, more commonly known as the G Wagon, is a mid-size luxury SUV series in production for over four decades. However, some models from 2017 onward have reported issues with interior components and corrosion. For those looking to learn more about these infamous models of the G Wagon family, this article provides further insight.

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G Wagon Years To Avoid With Reasons

Created initially as a military off-road vehicle, the Mercedes-Benz G Wagon was offered as a civilian version in 1979. In 2001, an imported V8-powered version of the G Wagon was introduced to the American market and gained immediate recognition in 2002. Since then, numerous upgrades have been made to enhance the performance and appearance of this beloved model from Mercedes.

Unfortunately, the Mercedes Benz G Wagon or G-Class models are not without flaws, and caution should be exercised when considering the purchase of a used model from specific years:

  • 2015 G Wagon
  • 2016 G Wagon
  • 2017 G Wagon
  • 2019 G Wagon
  • 2020 G Wagon

Caredge.com recently ranked the Mercedes Benz G Wagon 6th among 71 in its Best Luxury Car with the Best Residual Value category and noted that the G Wagon series has an impressive depreciation rate of 46% within 5 years. Unfortunately, this ranking does not apply to earlier models with technical, mechanical, and structural flaws. To address these issues adequately, further investigation is necessary.

2015 G Wagon Problems

2015 G Wagon Problems
2015 G Wagon Problems

The 2015 G Wagon has been heavily scrutinized this year for its performance and reliability. Many customers have complained about their vehicles' structural, electrical system, and engine flaws. Issues such as unwieldy handling, plunging fuel economy, limited front leg rest area, ineffective cupholders, and interior storage that are not up to Mercedes Benz standards have been reported.

In addition to these issues, users have mentioned difficulty opening main door handles due to fragile material in the handle design. Furthermore, repairs associated with door handle malfunctions can cost upwards of $500-$600 depending on the severity of damage caused by a faulty cylinder head or other defective parts such as valve spring retainers bearing cap bolts, head gasket exhaust manifold nuts, and spark plugs which also require replacement in some cases.

2016 G Wagon Problems

2016 G Wagon Problems
2016 G Wagon Problems

The Edmunds.com expert report found that the 2015 and 2016 G Wagon or G-Class models had similar issues, such as clumsy handling, limited front leg space, abysmal fuel economy, uncomfortable seating, and interior arrangements.

According to Cars.com, users reported a noisy ride, airbag warning lights illuminating unexpectedly, and a malfunctioning passenger side service within only 921 to 1000 miles of use. This issue reoccurred repeatedly for some users.

2017 G Wagon Problems

2017 G Wagon Problems
2017 G Wagon Problems

The 2017 model of the G Wagon was met with a host of issues from users, according to an Edmunds.com expert report. Poor gross steering and handling, a lack of interior space, and poor fuel economy resulted in below-standard drivability. Difficulty getting in and out of the vehicle was also noted, along with compromised off-road ability due to design changes by the manufacturer.

Defects such as malfunctioning ABS & EPS systems, faulty or broken rear cameras, navigation errors, mechanical braking malfunctions, and front and rear sensor failures were likewise reported, as traction control software errors and system module failure.

2019 G Wagon Problems

2019 G Wagon Problems
2019 G Wagon Problems

The 2019 G wagon model was launched with much promise as it had been redesigned to address common manufacturing faults. However, users soon reported an unsatisfactory handling experience and noted inadequate cargo space. In addition, the vehicle displayed side-wind instability and poor fuel economy, resulting in a complex driving environment.

On top of these issues, drivers also encountered too touch-sensitive steering wheel controls and an old-style command multimedia interface instead of the more advanced MBUX system. The independent front suspension further diminished the vehicle's off-road ability, leaving owners disappointed by this new release from Mercedes Benz.

2020 G Wagon Problems

2020 G Wagon Problems
2020 G Wagon Problems

Reports from both Edmunds.com and Cars.com indicate that the 2020 G Wagon model was not without its fair share of issues, many of which were eerily similar to those found in the prior 2019 model. Some of these included a lackluster interior setup leading to insufficient internal space, less than stellar fuel economy, instability, an outdated version of the Command multimedia system, and visible handling and control issues.

Furthermore, Thecarconnection.com report on this vehicle suggested flaws such as poor gas mileage and only one off-road mode being available - perhaps justifying their rating of 6.6 out of 10 for the 2020 G Wagon model overall.

What Are The Worst Years Of G Wagon?

It is evident from the discussion that particular G-Wagon or G-Class models are not recommended, with two of them standing out as inferior choices and should be avoided.

The 2017 G Wagon

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has reported consumer issues with 2017 models, including forward collision avoidance, backover prevention, and electrical stability control trouble. As a result of the severity rate and user safety concerns, NHTSA has officially issued four recalls against these models.

This year's G Wagon models have also been rated poorly compared to other automobiles by popular review and rating sites such as Edmunds.com, TheCarconnection.com, Cars.com, and USNews&WorldReports.com.

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The 2019 G Wagon

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has reported consumer complaints against the electrical system, electrical stability control, powertrain, service brakes, and suspension of 2019 models. This led to the NHTSA issuing 10 Recalls due to the severity rate and safety concerns posed by these problems.

Furthermore, reviews from highly reputable automobile rating sites such as Edmunds.com, which rated them 7/10, and TheCarconnection.com 6.6/10 have not been overly optimistic for this year's G Wagon models.

Most Common Problems Of G Wagon

The G Wagon or Mercedes Benz G-Class series is renowned for various issues discussed in earlier sections and common problems across most of its released models.

1. Corrosion & Prop Shaft Failure Problems

Consumers have reported that corrosion and rust are common problems in G Wagon vehicles from 2002 to 2018. In particular, build-up corrosion has been noticed in two main areas of the car: the tailgate and rear lights. Furthermore, users have experienced heavy shuddering or shaking due to prop shaft failure, which can only be resolved by replacing it with a new one.

2. Sunroof & Suspension Problems

G Wagon users have reported an unusual cracking noise from their vehicle’s sunroof. This issue occurs due to a loose connection between the cable or connecting hose and the motor. In addition, some users have experienced faulty suspension springs breaking and loud thumping noises while driving on speed bumps or rough surfaces. As a result of these issues, NHTSA has issued an official recall for specific 2019 models of the G Wagon. Fortunately, these problems can be solved by replacing the faulty suspension springs at a low cost.

Which G Wagon Years Are Safe To Buy Used?

Considering the purchase of a Used G Wagon? Looking at models from recent years may be beneficial:

  • 2012 G Wagon
  • 2013 G Wagon
  • 2014 G Wagon

The 2012 G Wagon is impressive, combining German engineering technology with high-quality construction materials. It's considerable power and rugged personality, paired with its luxuriously appointed cabin and capability of going anywhere, give it an incredibly formidable presence that cannot be matched.

The Mercedes Benz 2013 G Wagon offered a redesigned interior arrangement, modified electronics to improve driving visibility and off-road capability, and additional safety-related features for increased performance and presence.

The 2014 G Wagon is a classic Mercedes SUV offering timeless style with contemporary amenities. A 382-hp V-8 engine powers it, and has full-time four-wheel drive for maximum capability in all conditions. It provides generous seating for five passengers and standard navigation to make road navigation easier. Additionally, it features Xenon headlights that are brighter than traditional headlights for improved visibility on nighttime drives.

Which Year’s G Wagon Has Most Steering Problems?

Based on consumer complaints and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports, the 2013 and 2014 G Wagon models have been reported to experience steering issues.

Which Year’s G Wagon Has Most Electrical System Problems?

Reports of major electrical system issues in 2015 and 2019 G Wagon models have been frequently reported in consumer complaints and NHTSA reports.

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Final Words

When considering the purchase of a G-Wagon or G-Class series, it is crucial to remember that these vehicles are comparatively expensive. Even when looking for a used model, its price will be relatively higher than other, more affordable brands' new vehicles.

As such, potential buyers should be aware of significant issues associated with specific models and take appropriate measures to avoid them when selecting their next car.

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