1993 500 GE trivia
The limited edition 500 GE was never officially offered to the public. MB marketing folks doubted that there was a market for a 200,000 Deutschmark 4x4. So, instead of printing brochures etc and offering it to a large audience MB salesmen in Germany casually told owners of S-Class and G-Class about the prospect of a V-8, 240 HP luxury version of the G. Within one year they signed close to 500 contracts - without anyone ever seeing pictures or a vehicle on display.
Even with all the doubt about a 500 GE success - at least some MB people had enough foresight to make engines for the 500 GE available. They had stored 500 V-8 engines in crates at the AMG facility to be used for the 500 GE. Reason for this "store now - build later" game was that the V-8 engines used in 1992/1993 were different from the previously used 2 valve engines and would not fit in the G's engine bay.
So, pretty much salesmen's pitching and word of mouth sold this rare Gelaendewagen. Customers interested in this vehicle were given silver tie clips with an engraved G silhouette when signing the contract. Later, with the delivery of the car they received a framed artist engraved rendering of the 500GE - numbered and signed!
The 500GE is the only Gelaendewagen without the obligatory 3 differential locks - it had only center and rear differential locks.
Image of interior