With the world seemingly getting crazier every day, some city folk are running to the hills—both figuratively and literally— boosting the market for truly robust, burly off-road vehicles. Arguably topping the leaderboard runs the Brabus 800 Adventure XLP GWagen—what the elite German aftermarket tuner is dubbing a “supercar with a pickup bed.”
Brabus, famed for its tinkering with the iconic Tristar, starts with the already superb new-generation Mercedes-Benz G 63 AMG and gets to work; first stretching out its steel-ladder frame’s wheelbase by 20 inches to fit a steel-and-carbon pickup bed inspired by the insane AMG G63 6x6 [see sidebar]. This elongated chassis allows Brabus to keep the original cabin totally intact, while ultimately making the truck more than two feet (27.1 inches) longer than a stock G 63. With supreme skill Brabus engineers were able to sacrifice zero cabin space or rear legroom while retaining total torsional rigidity.
Then Brabus turned its attention to the suspension, tailoring their titanium-coated aluminum coil-over rig with portal axles specifically for the 800 Adventure XLP. A rare and complex off-road technology—where the axle tube is set higher, and power is transferred to every corner via gearboxes built into each wheel hub—these portal axles allow for better ground clearance (19.2-inch), maximum wheel articulation, and improved torque gearing. All ideal for off-road domination. Utilizing the Dynamic Select switch native in the current G-Wagen, the driver can easily control Brabus’ suspension from the warm and dry comfort of the cockpit, even raising and lowering ride height.
Of course it wouldn’t be a Brabus without engine upgrades: two high-performance turbochargers replace stock blowers, while adding a larger compressor and new engine mapping. This 800 PowerXtra spec upgrades the 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 to generate 800 horses and 737 lb-ft of torque, with peak torque available at only 3,600 rpms.
This makes the 800 Adventure XLP one of the world’s most powerful pickups. While its 0-62 mph click of 4.8 seconds is certainly respectable for a true off-road vehicle, the supercar pickup’s top speed is limited to 130 mph because of its vertiginous center of gravity and beefy all-terrain Pirelli Scorpion ATR tires (wrapped around 22-inch Monoblock HD wheels).
And just to make sure you don’t startle any bears in the forest, Brabus adds a high-performance exhaust with twin stainless-steel side tailpipes blowing out ahead of the rear wheels. Featuring a gurgling bypass blow-off valve, the Boost Xtra exhaust’s active flaps toggle from a quiet “Coming Home” mode to a barking whoof! that’ll alert fellow predators in a five-mile radius.
As expected there’s tons of nice touches like naked carbon fiber bits (hood panel with twin power bulges, rub strips, widebody fender flares, and tailgate panel, among others), an optional roof rack with quad LED flood lights, and matte black roll bars behind the cabin. But the most opulent, and some might argue ridiculous, accessory may be the landing pad for the included Wingcopter drone. Sure Brabus says the 75-mile range/150-mph high-performance drone was designed to deliver “urgently needed relief supplies and special equipment” to remote, difficult-to-reach locales, but we all know it’s really to take some sick pics for the ‘Gram, bro.
When AMG unveiled the G 63 6x6 for its 2013 model year, the world gasped. Some in horror, some in bewilderment, and some in lust, but none lacked an opinion. Now less than a decade later, that mutated Geländewagen has evolved into one of the most coveted steel monsters of the secondary market and auction game.
Originally developed for the Australian Army, the street version 6x6 was immediately seized and dissected by esteemed aftermarket tuners like Mansory and Brabus eager to apply their diamond-tipped tweaks.
Towering 93-inches tall and featuring no less than five lockable differentials, three autonomously operating rigid axles, 37-inch wheels and dual fuel tanks, the 8,000-lb.-plus behemoth even boasts buttons in the cabin to automatically deflate and inflate (in 20 seconds no less) your tires for off-roading, adding credence to Merc’s claim that the 6x6 is “the most spectacular cross-country vehicle of all time.”
Unfortunately for those seeking to get ahold of one, only around 150 units were ever built. And considering none were ever officially imported to America, this makes custom versions like Brabus’ 700 G63 AMG 6x6 extremely rare on domestic roads. Maybe that’s why they’re currently fetching over $2 million at auction.