Been driving the updated Mercedes Benz GLE, and this case it was the 400D. Off the bat I must say that I like the new shape, as the new design gives it a more powerful presence, with the front radiator grille in an octagonal SUV especially, also the prominent, chrome-plated underguard and the bonnet with two powerdomes. This is emphasised by the distinctive headlamp design by day and night. The ULTRA RANGE high beam of the optional MULTIBEAM LED headlamps projects a particularly long-range beam of light.
Viewed from the side, the wide C-pillar typical of the GLE conveys self-assured stability. The large wheels in sizes from 18 to 22 inches; as optional; are housed in wheel arches with prominent liners. The chrome surrounds of the windows are however reminiscent of a premium saloon model. In saying this, the GLE still seems mor comfortable on the road, as we took it off-road in light brush, and it did not look as comfortable or feel so. From the rear it has an athletic look with powerful shoulder muscle extending from the C-pillar to the rear lights. The rear is strikingly rounded off with the chrome-plated underguard. It also has the new MBUX system where you say Hey Mercedes, and it does most things that you direct it to do.
The new GLE has a considerably longer wheelbase than its predecessor, which has increased by 80 mm. This creates significantly more space, especially for passengers in the rear. Legroom in the second seat row has increased by 69 mm. Headroom in the rear with the standard, fixed rear seat unit and 40:20:40 backrest division has increased by 35 mm. And because the A-pillar is more upright than before, spaciousness and entry comfort in the first row has been further improved. As in the previous model, three child seats can be installed next to one another in the second seat row. The outer seats have ISOFIX fastening points.
The luggage capacity is up to 825 litres behind the rear seats, and up to 2055 litres when the second seat row is folded down. A 72 mm increase in through-loading width allows bulky items to be stowed more easily. It is very much more spacious and comfortable. 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.
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.
Drove the 400D which pushes out 243 kw and 700 Nm of torque, but does not seem to do that in an overt manner, not too loud at all. And it shifts the quite bulky GLE without any problems whatsoever. In all variants of the new GLE, power is transmitted by the 9G-TRONIC automatic transmission.
The new GLE is able to respond to LiveTraffic info – ideally before the driver or the radar and camera sensors detect the hold-up or hazard. When a traffic jam is detected, the speed is reduced by way of precaution to approx. 100 km/h, unless the driver specifically decides otherwise.
Once the tailback dissolves, the GLE accelerates back up to the set speed for Active Distance Assist DISTRONIC with route-based speed adaptation. Where traffic signs specify a different speed, Active Speed Limit Assist automatically selects the signposted speed limit.
A totally new feature of Active Brake Assist in the Driving Assistance package is the turning-off function, which comes into play when the driver intends to turn off across the oncoming lane: in the event of a risk of collision with oncoming traffic, the GLE can carry out autonomous braking. In addition, the new GLE is equipped with Active Blind Spot Assist which includes an exit warning. This function can lower the risk of a collision with other road users, such as passing cyclists. The lane assist braking can be quite startling and it won’t sit an inexperienced driver.
The new GLE Models:
|GLE 300 d 4MATIC||GLE 400 d 4MATIC||GLE 450 4MATIC|
|Number of cylinders/arrangement||4/in-line||6/in-line||6/in-line|
|Rated output (kW)||180||243||270|
|Extra output from EQ Boost (kW/hp)||–||–||16/22|
|Rated torque (Nm)||500||700||500|
|Add. torque from ECO Boost (Nm)||–||–||250|
|Fuel consumption combined (l/100 km)||6.4-6.1||7,5-7,0||9.4-8.3|
|Combined CO2 emissions (g/km)||161-169||184-199||190-214|
|Emission class||Euro 6d-TEMP||Euro 6d||Euro 6d-TEMP|
|Acceleration 0-100 km/h (s)||7.2||5.8||5.7|
|Top speed (km/h)||225||240||250|
|Starting Retail Price||R 1 210 500||R1 351 200||R1 329 400|
I really enjoyed my time in the GLE 400D, a friend of mine who drives a Porshe Cayenne, said that driving ahead of me, that it looks so bold and imposing in the rear , so it was a validation.