The Mercedes-AMG G65 was a very rare bird. A true off-roader with a twin-turbo V12 under the hood - that’s a combination that guarantees crazy performance off and on the road. But with the second-generation G-Class from 2018, the V12-powered model was discontinued and indirectly replaced by the G63 with a V8 unit. Many were disappointed but do you really need a V12 in an SUV when you have the amazing 4.0 twin-turbo V8 on the shelf? Let’s find out.

The video at the top of this page comes from the channel on YouTube, which currently has almost three million subscribers. Unfortunately, the nine-minute clip lacks English subtitles, though you can probably understand the most important details even without knowing a word. The short version of the story is that the team raced a new G63 against a G65 from the first-gen G-Class.

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The newer and lighter model has 577 horsepower (430 kilowatts) on tap for an estimated 0-62 miles per hour (0-100 kilometers per hour) acceleration in about 4.5 seconds. Against it, the V12-powered model has 621 hp (463 kW) but is slightly slower to 62 mph (100 kph) at 5.2 seconds. Of course, these are all factory figures that are not necessarily representative of these particular vehicles’ real-world performance.

The drag race begins with a standing-start chase and it looks a little tricky. The G63 didn’t have the best launch and didn’t manage to catch the G65 until the end of the track. We are not sure whether the V12-powered G-Class is faster or it was just the slower reaction that decided the first race. In the rolling-start races, the G63 shows its full potential and you can check out the results in the video at the top of this page.

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