The GLS, as it’s now known, has been subjected to an entirely predictable and very Germanic course of revisions. It looks a bit different, what with the sharper front-end, new head- and tail-lights and bumpers that bring it bang into line with the smaller GLE. Inside you’ll find all of Merc’s latest kit, many leathery surfaces and seven seats. With the unveiling of the new GLS, Mercedes brings some S-Class comfort, luxury and performance to its SUV line-up. The GLS is more efficient, more powerful and has more features than its predecessor. It's also huge.
In the automotive world, comfort and luxury typically go hand-in-hand with spaciousness and the GLS is no different. It measure 5,130mm long, 1,934mm wide and 1,850mm tall. The GLS can accommodate up to seven people and we're willing to believe Mercedes' assertion that it can do so with room to spare. All occupants are said to benefit from ample elbow room and headroom. Alternatively, the seats can be reorganized to make space for luggage.
The interior is replete with ambient lighting, a variety of trim options and the choice of five different leather color schemes. There's also an ‘ionization system’ for improving the air quality inside the vehicle and something called the designo Exclusive package, which includes heated seats. For the driver, there's a modified center console with a touchpad and a newly-designed instrument panel with an 8-in color display. Standard assistance systems include collision prevention, crosswind assist and attention assist, while optional assistance systems include Distronic Plus adaptive cruise control, pedestrian detection, Blind-Spot Assist and Active Lane Keeping Assist.
The safety features extend further. Automatic emergency call, accident recovery and breakdown assistance come as standard, as do Remote Online services that provide users with vehicle info from anywhere at anytime via an Internet platform. This includes the status of windows and doors, mileage, tire pressures and other diagnostic data. There are adaptive, two-stage airbags and kneebags for the driver and front passenger, as well as window-bags above all three seat rows. Air suspension with an enhanced adaptive damping system seeks to provide a stable ride, while optional active roll stabilization should help in the corners.
The one that most Indian enthusiast are likely to buy is the 350d, with its 243 horsepowers, 620Nm of torque and nine-speed automatic gearbox. There will also be the crazy GLS 63 AMG, which now comes with a heady 577hp from its 5.5-litre V8.No word on performance yet, but the old 549hp car could manage 270km with the limiter relaxed. There will be different kinds of engine options depending on the trim where the GLS is concerned, where you can leave most of the regular road users eating dust with its powerful AMG engine to an efficient diesel make.
Mercedes has claimed that all models will feature its nine-speed 9G-Tronic automatic transmission as standard, with the exception of the Mercedes-AMG GLS 63. That will have have an AMG Speedshift Plus 7G-Tronic transmission. Elsewhere, there's a refined exterior look, a new three-spoke steering wheel with gearshift paddles and 12 function buttons and chrome-look highlights including the roof-rails, underguard, shoulderline trim strips, luggage compartment handle and side skirt trim. Pricings will have some variation from the old price tags, with great power comes great costs.
The facelifted GL gets a new name and the 577bhp GLS 63 AMG heads the line-up for Merc's big new SUV.
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