If you've ever wanted to combine bulletproof security with the performance know-how of German tuning company Brabus, as well as the blocky magnificence of the Mercedes G-Class, then here's your answer. This is the armoured Brabus Invicto.
Invicto Shelter Cell
Capable of withstanding small-arms fire and explosives, the key to this new Brabus is the 'Invicto Shelter Cell', a self-contained, self-supporting and bolted-down protective frame housed in the vehicle. With further protective elements produced via 3D printing and bulletproof glass up top, German-ratified ballistics and explosives testing has shown that this Brabus can withstand 7.62mm x 39mm-caliber rounds (ammunition which is commonly used in AK-47 automatic rifles), as well as hand grenades and 12.5kg PETN explosive charges. That means it conforms to VPAM BRV 2009 and VPAM ERV 2010 standards of vehicle security.
Brabus says the armour-plating and the Invicto Shelter Cell add 1,000kg to the kerb weight of the G-Class, while preserving the door apertures to make getting into and out of the vehicle as easy as in a standard production model from Mercedes. Brabus' engineers replaced the entire suspension on both axles with components designed to take the increased weight of the Invicto, while a high-performance braking system (402mm front discs with six-piston callipers, 380mm rear discs with four-piston callipers) aim to bring all of this mass to a safe halt. Specially developed 20-inch alloy wheels are fitted with heavy-duty tyres of 275/50 R20 W113, which not only have an increased load rating but are also run-flats that allow the Invicto to be driven for up to 50km at speeds of 50km/h on a deflated or destroyed tyre.
V8 petrol powertrains
You can build your Brabus Invicto on either of the petrol-powered G-Class models, so regrettably the lovely G 350 d cannot be specified as armour-plated. Therefore, choose from the G 500 (which we don't get in Ireland) or the madcap Mercedes-AMG G 63 (which we do) for your basis vehicle, and then choose from three levels of Invicto finishing.
The Invicto Luxury is the most exclusive model of the Brabus series and, with the 585hp/850Nm V8 from the G 63 installed, it weighs in at 3.8 tonnes and has a limited top speed of 210km/h. It comes with the Brabus Widestar widebody kit, to which you can add exposed-carbon-fibre componentry if you so wish. The interior is trimmed in Brabus fine leather and Alcantara in a bespoke colour/design combination of the owner's choice. The Brabus Invicto Luxury can also have all-terrain protection added, for which a Brabus 800 power upgrade lifts the outputs to 800hp at 6,600rpm and 1,000Nm from just 3,600rpm.
The Invicto Pure looks identical to a production G-Class, making it a covert armoured car. Both the interior and exterior are pure Mercedes-Benz, so aside from all the security measures that Brabus will fit, what you're otherwise paying for here is a set of 20-inch Invicto alloy wheels with the run-flat tyres. The final selection of the three is the Invicto Mission, which is said to be 'tailor-made for the requirements of armed forces, police, emergency services, special forces and security guard companies'. That includes a 'myriad of mission-specific requirements' (a cool phrase, in and of itself) such as a front-mounted winch, an LED headlamp assembly on the front of the roof rack, beacons behind the windscreen, remote-controlled rotating searchlights at the rear and an armoured escape hatch on the roof. The cabin is fitted with four custom bucket seats that allow emergency workers to wear protective vests while riding in the vehicle, while five-point seatbelts ensure the occupants are kept firmly in place, even when the Brabus Invicto Mission is traversing extremely uneven terrain. Further special equipment for the Missions includes a fresh-air system with an NBC (nuclear, biological and chemical) filter, an infrared package with a night-vision device, an extensive onboard monitoring and navigation system, and the Modular Lightweight Load-carrying Equipment (MOLLE) system in the door panels and backrests of the seats' shells which is used by the military for securely fastening the equipment packs of the occupants.
Brabus is taking orders on the Invicto range now, with prices in Germany starting at €354,600.