Cars

Brabus XLP 900 “One of Ten”: The 900 hp pick-up drives so crazy

It’s the looks that bring you back to reality. When the man next to you at the traffic light looks confused at your wheel hub and then stares perplexed up at the driver’s cab. Only then will you become aware of what you are sitting in. Because after a bit of getting used to, the Brabus XLP 900 “One of Ten” – 900 hp, around three tons unladen weight – drives frighteningly normally. Apart from the narrow inner city streets, but more on that later.

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First we have to briefly clarify what kind of vehicle this is. Based on Mercedes AMG G 63 Brabus builds the pick-up 800 Adventure XLP. XLP stands for “Extra Large Pick-up”, which hits the nail on the head with a 50 cm longer frame and 70 cm additional outer length.
Brabus 900 XLP ONE OF TEN - Mercedes-AMG G-Class G63

The LED strip on the roof has the luminosity of a collapsed sun and burns your retinas off.

Portal axles and 22-inch off-road tires ensure 49 cm of ground clearance and enormous off-road mobility. The special edition XLP 900 “One of Ten” was created from this pick-up in a limited edition of ten units. 900 instead of 800 hp, around 800,000 euros expensive, fat light bars on the roof. The radiator grille is illuminated in red, as are the four side pipes. A crazy sight, more in-the-face is not possible.

Stunning interior in the Brabus XLP 900 “One of Ten”

We are thrilled and open the door. Thanks to electrically extendable running boards, the cockpit is easy to board. Brabus does a great job in the interior. Almost every corner, no matter how small, is lined with the finest quilted leather, the rest is covered with trim parts made of carbon and red anodized aluminum.

After pressing the start button, we get a fright: the cold start roar is downright animalistic! With a light shiver on our backs and a bassy bubbling we roll off.

Brabus 900 XLP ONE OF TEN - Mercedes-AMG G-Class G63

The material and processing quality of the Brabus XLP is of the very highest quality. The old Command infotainment less.


First it’s on country roads, to get used to it. Because that’s what it takes at a width of 2.1 meters and a height of around 2.3 meters. What feels like three floors above the other road users, estimating the distances is not easy. In “Comfort” mode, the chassis also rocks quite well, the steering is quite spongy thanks to the 325/55 tires. This is what truck driving should feel like.

What constantly swims with you is the knowledge that you have 900 hp in front of you. So we tap the accelerator lightly and are in no way prepared for what the XLP pulls off.

The transmission shifts down, the background noise increases, the entire body rears up, and the three-ton truck explodes forward like an elephant shot from a catapult. Brabus states 4.4 seconds from 0 to 100 km/h, but even at half throttle it feels faster.

Brabus 900 XLP ONE OF TEN - Mercedes-AMG G-Class G63

You have to get used to the dimensions of the car. But after that, if there’s enough space, it’s very relaxed.

Fear rules over 160 km/h

We turn onto the Autobahn and really traipse along on an unlimited section. The monster pick-up marches effortlessly over the 200 mark. The speed is limited at 210 km/h, with consideration for the tires and the high center of gravity. Better that way, because anything over 160 km/h feels unhealthy. The portal axles howl with the tires in competition, the wind tugs, the body shakes, while the biturbo V8 forces the chunk mercilessly to become faster.
Brabus 900 XLP ONE OF TEN - Mercedes-AMG G-Class G63

Due to its extreme elevation, rear road users can almost see through under the pick-up.

140 km/h turned out to be the optimal cruising speed. You slouch in the soft leather, the wind noise is restrained. Intermediate sprints are a lot of fun thanks to the sheer power and the fat sound including the loud wastegate hiss, and we catch ourselves wanting less power.

The city center is not his territory at all

The pick-up was actually just as little built for the motorway as it was for the city, where we are going now. On the direct route to downtown Hamburg. Where you quickly get used to the dimensions on country roads and motorways, you really become aware of the monstrosity of this vehicle.

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Streets that are normally easy to drive on are mutating into narrow alleys. It feels like trying to stuff an anchor line through the eye of a needle. Every road is blocked, and there is always the fear that the outrageously expensive carbon fenders will offend someone.

Speaking of offending, we have never received so many rude gestures from cyclists with any test car. But never so many thumbs up, smartphones drawn, incredulous looks, crowds of people in parking lots.

Average consumption well over 20 liters

You can understand both sides. But we want to say this much: when cruising outside of the city in a relaxed manner, the Brabus soon feels much more normal than it first appears. After a short period of getting used to it, you will be really relaxed when you drive across country and on the motorway.

Brabus 900 XLP ONE OF TEN - Mercedes-AMG G-Class G63

The teak paneled cargo area is not particularly large. But there is always enough space for an outdoor breakfast for two.

Rationally speaking, an average consumption of around 25 liters, the absurdly high price and the cabin and loading area, which are astonishingly small in comparison to the dimensions, are of course anything but good reasons to buy the Brabus XLP 900 “One of Ten”. And we couldn’t test the only real purpose in Hamburg due to the lack of dunes and steep terrain. But even so, we learned two things: This car is easier to handle than it is, but no one needs it. And that’s what makes it so fascinating.

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