Merc’s new luxury SUV has the makings of a segment challenger

Mercedes has a strong presence at the 2018 Paris Motor Show, and one of its main offerings is the GLE-Class SUV. The SUV’s unveiling took place at the Hotel Molitor as part of the German automaker’s “Meet Mercedes” event. More than 400 guests were on-hand to witness the GLE’s world première, becoming the first group of people to see Mercedes’ new luxury SUV in the flesh. As a new model, the GLE is bringing a lot to the SUV table, including a new operating concept, a new engine lineup, and a suite of innovative driver assistance systems. The SUV will hit dealerships in the U.S. and Europe sometime in early 2019. Pricing details will be revealed closer to its launch date.

There was a lot of hype surrounding the Mercedes GLE-Class, and a lot of it was well-deserved. Merck’s mid-sized luxury SUV isn’t a typical new SUV; it’s an important one that’s entering an incredibly competitive segment that’s populated by models like the Audi Q7 and the BMW X5, two of the most established mid-size luxury SUVs in the world. Mercedes knows that there are no cutting corners when it comes to the GLE.

Fortunately, that mindset served the German automaker well.

The new GLE-Class is far from a perfect SUV, but when it comes to mid-sized luxury models, it has a lot of compelling features to offer.

The new GLE-Class is bigger than its predecessor, which is to say that there’s likely more room in the new model compared to its predecessor. Mercedes didn’t dive into the actual numbers, but if new SUV’s interior is more spacious than the current model, we can assume that the new SUV will have more cargo room compared to the existing model. That’d be great news for fans of the GLE because the current model already has more than 38 cubic feet of cargo space behind the rear seats. That’s one of the highest numbers in its segment. The new GLE-Class is also more aerodynamic, a characteristic that Mercedes isn’t shy about advertising. The GLE, for example, has best-in-class drag coefficient numbers — 0.29 — compared to its rival SUVs.

The SUV’s front section has an organic look to it, highlighted, in part, by its massive front grille. It also benefits from a stance that exudes purpose and confidence. The GLE-Class knows what it is, and it’s not going to apologize for being what it’s not.

Take a peak inside the SUV’s cabin, and you’ll see a world of pure sophistication.

A pair of massive 12.3-inch screens dominate the proceedings, even though they’re far from the only distinctive design elements found inside the cabin of the GLE-Class.

Mercedes’ new MUBX infotainment system is available on the GLE.

In terms of power, the new GLE-Class will have a number of engine options to choose from. At the moment, though, the GLE 4Matic takes center stage. This version of the mid-size luxury SUV is powered by a 3.0-liter turbocharged inline-six engine and a mild hybrid powertrain that combine to produce a stout 383 horsepower and over 500 pound-feet of torque. Other versions of the GLE, inducing a plug-in hybrid and a turbodiesel, are also available, even though they haven’t been released yet.

Further Reading

2020 Mercedes-Benz GLE Exterior
- image 795118

Read our full review on the 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLE.

Note: all images courtesy of Mercedes-Benz.

On the eve of the 2018 Mondial de l’Auto Paris, Mercedes-Benz showcased the latest member of its premium SUV family, the new GLE. More than 400 invited guests witnessed the world premiere of the SUV trendsetter at the brand’s "Meet Mercedes" event. As in previous years, the Hotel Molitor, with its Art Deco design and street-art elements, provided the perfect setting for the popular event format. Besides a best-in-class cd figure of 0.29, the GLE also offers a compelling new operating concept, innovative driver assistance systems, a new engine line-up and considerably more space.

“21 years ago, we founded the premium SUV segment with the M-Class. Since then, the importance of these models has continuously increased – not only for us, but also for the whole industry,” says Britta Seeger, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG, responsible for Mercedes-Benz Cars Marketing & Sales. “That’s strong motivation for us to make the GLE even better. Families will enjoy the additional space; business people will be happy about the improved connectivity and fans of the outdoors will love its new driving capabilities.”

The new Mercedes-Benz GLE is packed with innovations. One world first is the 48-volt E-ACTIVE BODY CONTROL active suspension, while the driver assistance systems go one step further with Active Tailback Assist. The interior is even bigger and more comfortable, with an optional third row of seats. The infotainment system comes with bigger screens, a full-colour head-up display with a resolution of 720 x 240 pixels and MBUX interior assist, which can recognise hand and arm movements for convenient operation. The exterior design exudes not only presence and strength but also sets a new aerodynamics best-in-class in the SUV segment.

At Meet Mercedes at the Molitor, the former iconic swimming pool converted into a luxury hotel in 2014, invited journalists enjoyed an exclusive insight into several new products and technologies from the brand with the three-pointed star. Also unveiled alongside the new GLE were the Mercedes-AMG A 35 4MATIC (fuel consumption combined 7.4-7.3 l/100 km; CO2 emissions combined 169-167 g/km) and the smart forease show car, which will celebrate their world premieres tomorrow at the Mercedes-Benz press conference at the 2018 Mondial de l’Auto Paris. Another world premiere scheduled for tomorrow is that of the new Mercedes-Benz B-Class. Celebrating its show premiere is the EQC, the first battery-electric vehicle from the EQ product and technology brand.

View the full press release Hide press release
Press release
What do you think?
Show Comments
Car Finder: