The first of a host of new Mercedes-Benz models to arrive in 2019, the latest GLE brings a host of updates to the brand’s large SUV offering. Prices begin from €78,395 (GLE 300d 4MATIC) and from €95,995 (GLE 450 petrol 4MATIC).
It’s more purposeful looking than before, especially from the front in AMG Design trim which boasts a unique imposing looking grille. An 80mm longer wheelbase and short overhangs add further to the stylish appearance.
Mercedes-Benz interiors of recent times are among the best in the business and the new GLE boasts all the latest features including 2 12.3” infotainment and cockpit displays incorporating MBUX technology. This includes the ‘Hey Mercedes’ voice-activated feature and recognises driver and front passenger hand and arm movements gestures to control features such as seat adjustment, reading lamp and light.
It’s noticeably more spacious than before, aided by optionally electrically adjustable second row seats, helping to ease access to the optional third row of seats. That third row folds fully flat giving up to 2,000 litres of boot space.
One interesting optional new feature is E-Active Body Control available on the active suspension system. It controls spring and damping forces and a rocking mode, which effectively can almost bounce the car out of rough spots making it a very capable off-roader.
Four diesel models and one petrol (GLE 450) make up the new range, all with 4MATIC transmission. The diesels comprise a four cylinder GLE 300d, and 6-cylinder GLE 350d, GLE 400d and GLE 450d, all meeting Euro 6d emissions standards. CO2 emissions range from 6.4-6.1-litres per 100 km and 169-161g/km (in the case of the 300d) to 9.4-8.3-litres per 100 km and 214-190 g/km (in the case of the top-powered 450d). A plug-in Hybrid electric version with up to 100kms of range on electric power is due by year end.
Seeing this latest introduction as ‘yet another step’ by Mercedes-Benz in the quest to broaden its ownership base, both by gender and by age, their sales manager in Ireland, Ciaran Allen said: “GLE is pitched to be one of the most ‘value-attractive’ models in its segment and forerunner in a parade of new 2019 model introductions, next of which will be the new A-Class saloon and CLA”.