There was a time when Mercedes Benz was going through a period where they were figuring their SUV offering and one would be confused about the GLC, GLE and the GLS because all we knew was the ML Glass as the main SUV. When they introduced the GLA you got the idea where Mercedes Benz was going with the SUV segment. Now that they also introduced the GLB you understand anything GL is an SUV segment. Also with the GLC and GLE Mercedes Benz introduced different versions of the same model, obviously they both have different shapes.
The exterior design of the new Mercedes-Benz GLE not only exudes presence and power but also sets a new standard for aerodynamics in the SUV segment. The SUV trendsetter is full of innovations. For example, the active suspension system E-ACTIVE BODY CONTROL on a 48volt basis is a world first. The new driver assistance systems further increase the level of active safety. The interior is even more spacious and comfortable, with a third seat row available on request. The infotainment system boasts larger screens and MBUX Interior Assist, which can detect hand and arm movements to assist with control functions. The GLE will feature a completely new six-cylinder petrol engine and four-cylinder diesel. The new 4MATIC ensures great agility on the road and superior performance off the beaten track.
“In 1997 Mercedes-Benz founded the premium SUV segment with the launch of the M-Class. Since then, more than two million customers have decided in favour of the off-roader worldwide. The GLE introduces the new control concept with innovative driving assistants, a new engine range and significantly more space. The new GLE is set to continue this success story throughout.” Says Johannes Fritz, Co-CEO and Executive Director of Mercedes-Benz Cars South Africa.
The first petrol model powered by a six-cylinder engine systematically electrified with 48-volt technology is the Mercedes-Benz GLE 450 4MATIC and is available on market launch. Its performance data: 270 kW and 500 Nm of torque, with a further 250 Nm of torque available via EQ Boost over short periods. The integrated starter/alternator (ISG) is responsible for hybrid functions such as EQ Boost or energy recuperation while allowing fuel savings that were previously reserved for high-voltage hybrid technology.
The interior of the new GLE derives its fascination from the contrast between the luxurious, elegant ambience of a Mercedes-Benz luxury sedan and the robust, progressive features of an SUV. The central element in the dashboard’s design is a sporty, stylish cockpit unit embedded in striking dashboard support.
The prominent, raised centre console creates a robust contrast with the free-floating appearance of the dashboard. As a typical feature of off-roaders, there are two prominent grab handles on the centre console. Flowing leather surfaces create a modern, luxurious impression rounded off by a broad area of trim and flush-fitting roller blinds. All the ergonomically refined controls and displays feature a new design.
The GLE is equipped with the latest generation of the multimedia system MBUX – Mercedes-Benz User Experience. As standard, it includes a large screen Cockpit as 12.3-inch/31.2 cm screens arranged next to each other for a sublime widescreen look. The information of the instrument cluster and media display is easily legible on the large, high-resolution screens. An emotive presentation with brilliant graphics underlines the comprehensibility of the intuitive control structure.
In all variants of the new GLE, power is transmitted by the 9G-TRONIC automatic transmission. With the four-cylinder engines, 4MATIC all-wheel drive is realised with a transfer case which transmits the drive torque to the axles in a fixed ratio of 50:50 percent.
A next-generation head-up display is available which sets new standards with a resolution of 720 x 240 pixels and an extended projection distance. A system of lenses and mirrors projects a full-colour image measuring around 45 x 15 centimetres into the windscreen. To the driver, it appears to float above the bonnet at a distance of around 3 metres. Now more than twice the size, the virtual image is 20 percent brighter for better legibility and has space for further information.
Mercedes-Benz GLE 300d R1 210 500
Mercedes-Benz GLE 400d R1 351 200
Mercedes-Benz GLE 450 R1 329 400