This opulent Mercedes G-Wagen is a $500,000 art piece on wheels — see inside the G63 Steampunk Edition

Mercedes Carlex Steampunk Hero
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition.
  • Polish car customizer Carlex Design developed a totally over-the-top, steampunk-themed G-Wagen called the Steampunk Edition. 
  • Carlex plans to build 10 of the SUVs, and said each one takes 5,200 hours to build. 
  • Each limited-edition G63 will feature a leather interior, wood floors, and a bespoke, hand-etched copper roof with steampunk-inspired designs. 
  • The conversion costs roughly $350,000, not including the price of the SUV itself. 
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Maintaining the same basic, boxy look for decades, the Mercedes-Benz G-Wagen doesn't need much in the way of improvements. But that doesn't stop customizers — and occasionally the brand itself — from coming up with outlandish new takes on the time-honored SUV. 

One of the latest comes courtesy of Polish customization firm Carlex Design. The company developed a limited-run, steampunk-inspired G-Wagen that runs customers right around $500,000, when one factors in the roughly $350,000 conversion cost and the price of the SUV itself. 

The steampunk aesthetic gets its inspiration from 19th-century fashion and steam-powered machinery, so Carlex's G63 Steampunk Edition incorporates lots of leather, wood, copper accents, and handmade details. The most striking part of the SUV is an intricate, hand-etched copper roof that will be unique to each of the 10 Steampunk-Edition G63s built. 

Keep scrolling to take a closer look at Carlex's Steampunk G63. 

Polish customization company Carlex Design created a limited-run, steampunk-themed Mercedes-Benz G-Wagen. And it's just as wild as it sounds.
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition.
"We are living in the era of mass production and plastic, where handcraft seems to be falling into oblivion," Carlex said in a press release.
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition.
"The G Steampunk Edition is a perfect choice for collectors fascinated with the art of jewelry, hand-craft, and fantasy."
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition.
Carlex based the model off of the Mercedes-AMG G63 SUV and sought to keep most of the exterior unchanged.
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition.
However, it did incorporate a stunning, handmade copper roof, "on which jewelers and designers engraved a gigantic relief with steampunk motifs."
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition.
Each of the 10 special-edition vehicles will get a unique design on the roof.
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition.
The SUV also gets a bespoke etching on the spare-tire cover ...
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition.
... along with custom copper-colored rims.
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition.
All in all, Carlex says each vehicle takes 5,200 hours to build.
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition.
The steampunk motif continues on the SUV's interior, which features intricate designs along with copper-colored accents, solid wood, and leather.
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition.
The SUV's headliner is made from Alcantara ...
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition.
... and comes embroidered with steampunk imagery to match the roof.
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition.
The Steampunk Edition boasts a similar design on the center armrest ...
Carlex center armrest
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition.
... and on the doors.
Carlex door panel
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition.
Carlex laid down solid walnut for the floors ...
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition.
... and plated parts of the interior in gold.
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition.
Each car comes with a plaque denoting its limited-edition status.
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition.
And each customer gets a "leather-bound book ornamented with gold emblems," which documents the entire conversion process.
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition.
The conversion costs roughly $350,000, a Carlex spokesperson told Business Insider.
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition.
When you factor in the cost of the SUV — which starts at more than $150,000 — you're looking at an all-in cost of roughly $500,000.
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition.
Though the SUV was officially announced earlier this year, Carlex says there are still a few build slots available.
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition
Carlex Design G63 Steampunk Edition.
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