Introducing The New GLE-Class From Mercedes-Benz
Published: 06th February 2017
The arrival on the luxury SUV scene of the new GLE-Class from Mercedes-Benz represents a renaming of the current M-Class lineup, with the premium on-road off-roader sporting some new exterior details, a revised instrument panel design and new trims.
The new GLE moniker is part of a restructuring and subsequent new nomenclature for the SUV range, centered around the five core model series A, B, C, E and S. From now, all SUV models will have the first two letters GL in their name - the G denoting the vehicle's lineage (the iconic G-Class) and the L, which has appeared time and time again in Mercedes-Benz history, helping make the model designations easier to remember and easier to pronounce.
The third letter indicates the relationship to the relevant core model series, thus what was the M-Class is now the GLE-Class, better aligning it to the Mercedes E-Class sedan counterpart.
With all this in mind, the latest SUVs from Stuttgart to look out for amid the various make and model of luxury cars Hong Kong boasts are the GLE 400, GLE 500, Mercedes-AMG GLE 63, Mercedes-AMG GLE 63 4MATIC and a new GLE Coupe variant.
In the luxury SUV segment, the GLE-Class competes with the likes of the BMW X5 and X6, Lexus RX 350 and Porsche Cayenne.
The GLE comes with redesigned front and rear bumpers, widened wings and an exhaust system with visible tailpipes to give it an expressive, sporty character. Drawn-out lines and a long wheelbase with short overhangs help shape a sporty silhouette, along with the strikingly-shaped wheel arches.
The bonnet dominates the SUV's front with its striking power domes, along with the radiator trim with central Mercedes star and two three-dimensional louvres. There are optional LED High Performance headlamps to contribute to the attractive lighting composition typical of Mercedes-Benz. The bicolour tail lamps also use LED technology and together with a lower roof at the rear and horizontal lines, create a striking rear end look.
The GLE was designed to stand with a poise of confidence, class and assurance. And, in the interior, to exude an atmosphere of spaciousness blended with impressive comfort and high-quality appointments. A ‘freshness' to the cabin comes via new appointment colours like ginger beige, crystal grey, espresso brown or saddle brown, while fine silver chrome piping around the buttons on the multifunction steering wheel, seat adjustment controls in the doors and the CENTRAL MEDIA DISPLAY are nice, subtle touches. The upper section of the instrument panel has been redesigned and there's an optional ARTICO man-made leather covering for this available.
Mercedes has restructured the exterior and interior individualization options for the GLE-Class. The list includes THERMOTRONIC automatic climate control with three climate zones (THERMATIC automatic climate control with two climate zones is standard), ambient lighting in the three dimmable colours white, amber and ice-blue, ionization interior air filter, multicontour driver and front passenger seats including massage function, heated front and rear seats, power glass sliding panoramic sunroof, anti-theft protection package, memory package, night package and parking package with 360-degree camera.
A host of AMG fittings and equipment is also available, for that extra touch of sporty dynamism and individualism. Such as the AMG Driver's package, door sill panels and floor mats with AMG lettering, AMG instrument cluster, AMG Performance steering wheel in black nappa leather with silver-coloured aluminium shift paddles, AMG sport seats, AMG Performance or sports exhaust system and the AMG Line exterior and AMG Line interior.
The expected bevy of Mercedes-Benz safety and assistance features deployed in the GLE includes ATTENTION ASSIST, the PRE-SAFE system, BAS Brake Assist, ADAPTIVE BRAKE with HOLD function and Hill-Start Assist, ESP Electronic Stability Program, Anti-lock braking system (ABS), Acceleration skid control (ASR), Crosswind Assist, front airbags and sidebags, driver kneebag, windowbags and side-impact protection. Optionals include the LED Intelligent Light System, Adaptive High-beam Assist PLUS and Active Parking Assist with PARKTRONIC.
Mercedes says the GLE offers greater efficiency with fuel consumption reduced by up to seven per cent compared to similar M-Class engines. Purring under the bonnet of the GLE 400 is a V6-cylinder powerhouse and in the GLE 500 a V8-cylinder, while the Mercedes-AMG GLE 63 boasts a V8-cylinder biturbo engine.
The GLE 400 and GLE 500 come with the 7G-TRONIC PLUS 7-speed automatic transmission and the Mercedes-AMG GLE 63 with AMG SPEEDSHIFT PLUS 7G-TRONIC.
And the all-wheel drive system of the new GLE is designed to boost traction, driving dynamics and driving stability in conditions such as rain, ice or snow whether travelling on-road or off-road.
The Mercedes-AMG GLE 63 4MATIC sits atop the GLE-Class lineup as the high-end SUV. On the outside the AMG radiator grille with twin louvres, the AMG front and rear aprons, large AMG multi-spoke alloy wheels finished in titanium grey and widened wheel arches and AMG Sport exhaust system with two chrome twin tailpipes all form part of the striking exterior.
Inside, the cabin is dominated by the AMG instrument cluster, AMG Performance steering wheel and AMG sport seats in AMG nappa leather upholstery. There is, of course, a bunch of other AMG interior goodies as well, such as brushed stainless-steel sport pedals with rubber studs, ARTICO man-made leather trim with topstitching on the dashboard and beltlines, aluminium trim with light-tone longitudinal grain and black fabric roof lining.
The powerhouse is an AMG 5.5-litre V8 biturbo engine and the AMG SPEEDSHIFT PLUS 7G-TRONIC automatic transmission serves up five drive modes.
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