2013 Mercedes-Benz G550

The Mercedes-Benz G-Class has been on the market for a whopping 35 years. That's a heck of a long time for one vehicle to stick around, yet Autocar reports that last year was the Geländewagen's strongest in terms of sales. Little wonder then that Mercedes is in no rush to discontinue the G-Wagen, but it does reportedly have some serious updates lined up for the vehicle that is, short of the Unimog, it's oldest and most capable.

Though the "new" G-Class is set to keep the current model's W463 internal designation, it's tipped to grow larger yet lighter, more refined and more fuel efficient than the existing version.

Among the changes in line, according to Autocar, is the increased use of aluminum in the vehicle's construction – expected to help trim a good 450 pounds or so off its hefty curb weight. It's also set to grow a good 4 inches wider to the benefit of stability and interior space, which in turn is anticipated to borrow some elements from the latest C-Class to make it an even more tempting proposition for luxury buyers. New suspension components, steering system and nine-speed automatic transmission ought to do the rest, joining a revised range of engines being developed for the new E-Class – including new AMG versions that reportedly account for a good half of all G-Wagens sold worldwide.

A more comprehensively updated model is also reportedly being planned for the GL-Class, the luxury SUV that was originally slated to replace the G-Class before Benz realized the old sport-ute was still in high demand. More refinement ought to help it take on the Range Rover and fend off the advances of the upcoming Bentley Falcon, while a long-wheelbase model will join the top of the S-Class range in an effort to replace the discontinued Maybach line.