This year has started off with manufacturers sending test models all over the world. Mercedes is one of the busiest. This year its performance division, AMG, celebrates its 50th birthday and so what better way than to develop the GT C Edition 50. It is basically the same as the GT C Roadster unveiled in 2016, featuring a 4.0-litre biturbo V8.
Performance is also key to another model that Mercedes is testing, although this time it is not a sports car, but the G-Class bakkie. With the company set to launch the new G-Class in 2019, it is developing a couple of end of era models including the G500 4×4-2. Unlike the six-wheeled monster, this model has just four wheels and a full-size cab as well as a small load bay at the back. It is unlikely to make it to SA.
It has also been testing a new AMG C43. The big news is that it is the first model to be seen testing that features the facelift details that will be rolled out across the C-Class range. A local spokesperson advised that the facelift is not in the planning for 2017, so expect it early in 2018. The new C will adopt some of the styling cues of the latest E-Class, particularly in the front and rear LED lights. Inside, our sources are expecting dual screens to display the latest connectivity options that also debuted in the new E-Class. – Mark Smyth