DaimlerChrysler offers a series of sport utility vehicles to the public under the Mercedes-Benz brand as G-Class. Commonly referred to as the G-Wagen, short for Geländewagen (or Cross-Country Vehicle), Mercedes
secured military contracts for the vehicle in the late 1970s and offered a civilian version to the public in 1979. Never an entirely Mercedes product, the G-Wagen was a joint Steyr-Daimler-Puch development and are assembled by Magna Steyr
in Graz, Austria.
The Australian Defence Force (ADF) is about to receive 1200 specially made Mercedes G-Wagon for their fleet. The first prototypes will be tested in 2010, with deliveries of production models to take place between 2011 and 2013.
The new purpose-built cross-country vehicles will replace the ADF’s existing tactical vehicle fleet, and their entry into Australia’s military is the result of a large-scale project by the ADF. Internally coded as ‘Land 121’ but more commonly referred to as ‘Project Overlander’, the transition updates all existing Australian military field vehicles and trailers with up-to-date modern versions. It is one of the ADF’s largest peace-time projects.
The contract will see the delivery of 1200 Mercedes-Benz G-Wagon off-road models, supplied in a number of variants. These include two- and four-door station wagons in 4×4 configuration, 4×4 cab-chassis utility vehicles, and purpose-built 6×6 models in both single- and dual-cab chassis. It also includes a specialised 6×6 surveillance and reconnaissance version for use in northern Australia.