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Electric Mercedes-Benz G-Class coming with all the swagger, none of the emissions

One of Mercedes-Benz's most iconic models is in for the zero-emissions treatment.

Mercedes-Benz

Swagger, power, off-road chops and efficiency. One of these words definitely doesn't describe the Mercedes-Benz G-Class, but it might in the future.

The long-running G-Class is in for a zero-emissions makeover down the road as Daimler CEO Ola Kallenius confirmed during an event in Berlin on Thursday that an electric G-Class is on the horizon.

"There will be a zero-emission EV version of the Mercedes-Benz G-Class," Daimler representative Sascha Pallenberg quoted the CEO as saying at the event via Twitter. The CEO also revealed there were actually discussions to kill the G-Class off, but with an electric model planned, it sounds like the swanky SUV is safe for the foreseeable future.

Mercedes-Benz said it has no additional comment beyond the CEO's statement at this time.

There are certainly many questions surrounding the electric luxury and off-road SUV. It's not clear if the model will sit on the standard G-Class' architecture or if it may move to a dedicated platform for Mercedes-Benz's upcoming EVs. Battery technology is also a wildcard since it will likely take a hulking battery to provide the performance expected of a G-Class on- and off-road.

Right now, a twin-turbo 4.0-liter V8 provides the off-road SUV with 416 horsepower worth of motivation. There's also the racier AMG-bred version with 577 hp. Those kinds of figures aren't impossible with electric motors and batteries, but packaging them and ensuring a decent range with a vehicle as large as the G-Class seems like quite the task.

Thus, it's a safe bet this electric off-roader is still a ways off. The German automaker plans for 10 electric cars in the next two years, but I wouldn't hold my breath for an electric G-Class just yet. Before a purely electric version, a plug-in hybrid is likely far more possible.

Video: New Mercedes-Benz G-Class: Can you spot the difference?

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