Graz. The opening ceremony for the new G-Class Experience Centre on the former Nittner aerodrome around 15 kilometres south of Graz took place yesterday, less than a year after the ground-breaking ceremony in spring 2019. From spring 2020, customers and fans from all over the world can come here to experience the impressive on- and off-road capabilities of the G-Class (combined fuel consumption: 13.3-9.6 l/100 km; combined CO2 emissions: 304-252 g/km). Here they will get the opportunity to fully test the enormous potential of the G-Glass, hone their driving skills on at times extreme terrain, and experience first-hand what the "Schöckl proved" quality stamp means. Graz's own mountain, the Schöckl, is home to the legendary test track on which the G-Class has to prove its worth during the development phase.
Conditions on the site of the new G-Class Experience Centre covering 100,000 m² are similarly challenging to those on the Schöckl mountain. Alongside a reception and presentation area there are four test modules in total: a natural and an artificially created off-road section, the G-Rock. Here guests can experience the vehicle under off-road conditions on various approach ramps with different surfaces and gradients as well as when driving on inclinations and through water. They can also negotiate various approach ramps with gradients up to 100 percent and an on-road section on the airfield's former taxiways. This is where drivers can push themselves to the limits of their abilities with manoeuvres such as extreme braking and on slalom courses. For more information and preregistration options, please visit our G-Class-Experience Website.
During the construction phase a great deal of care was taken to handle the existing conditions sensitively: the routing in the natural off-road area was adapted to the site in cooperation with experts to ensure that trees and biotopes worthy of protection remained intact.
Guests of honour at the opening ceremony included state parliament member Alexandra Pichler-Jessenko, Member of Parliament Karin Greiner, Graz district commissioner Dr Angelika Unger, city councillor Dr Günter Riegler, mayor of Feldkirchen/Graz Erich Gosch, and representatives of the construction firms, the project teams, Graz airport, and residents.
Gerhard Schramm, Managing Director of Mercedes-Benz G GmbH, said: "Thanks to the close and excellent collaboration between Mercedes-Benz G GmbH, the local authorities and, of course, the construction firms, it was possible to complete this unique experience centre less than one year after the ground-breaking ceremony." Feldkirchen's mayor Erich Gosch said: "We are very proud that this one-of-a-kind centre has been created here and will mark the next chapter in the already legendary story of the cross-country vehicle."