Mercedes-Benz is entering the market for luxury sports utility vehicles with the GL-Class. Prices for this premium off-roader with the comfort of a deluxe saloon car start at $75643 for the GL 320 CDI.

Customers wishing to buy the multi-talented GL, which can optionally seat up to seven people, are now able to place their orders at the company’s sales and service outlets. The tried-and-trusted V6 diesel in the GL 320 CDI delivers 224 hp, while its ample 376 lbs-ft of torque are on tap across a wide range of engine speeds. Despite all this power, the engine only burns 9.8 litres of diesel per 100 kilometres. In the GL 420 CDI, available from $ 94369, the re-engineered V8 diesel boasts four valves per cylinder and twin turbochargers with variable nozzle turbines and provides highly spirited performance. Its torque peaks at an imposing 700 Newton metres and it generates an output of 306 hp. Both diesel units come with a zero-maintenance particulate filter as standard and comply with the stringent EU4 emissions limits. The GL 500 features a newly developed 5.5-litre V8 petrol engine with a rated output of no less than 388 hp and costs $102015. In the GL 450 (costing $92155) the V8 powerplant from the same engine family has a displacement of 4.6 litres and generates 340 hp. All the engines available for the GL-Class are teamed up with the 7G-TRONIC seven-speed automatic transmission with DIRECT SELECT as standard.

4MATIC – the permanent all-wheel-drive system from Mercedes-Benz – helps to give the GL-Class superior handling dynamics under any conditions. In con-junction with AIRMATIC, the standard-fit air suspension system, plus the precise speed-sensitive steering and ADS, the Adaptive Damping System which also comes as standard, the generously sized GL (wheelbase 3075 mm) is surprisingly agile. The GL not only cuts a good figure on the road, it also shines as a genuine off-roader. The standard-specification Off-Road Pro engineering package, including reduction gearing, manually engageable rear and inter-axle differential locks and extended height adjustment functionality for AIRMATIC, considerably enhances the car’s off-road capabilities. All the features designed to improve grip are further supported by 4ETS, the electronic traction system for all-wheel drive.

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