This Mercedes produces diversity of opinion. It ranges from "fascinating combination of sports coupe and off-road SUV" to "clumsy BMW copy". Regardless of which point of view people are attracted to - talk at the Detroit car show about the premiere of the Mercedes GLE coupe anyway. Whereby it seems quite astonishing that emulates the most still regarded as conservative brand with the star one of the most controversial models of the Bavarian rival.
Of course, at the first encounter with the GLE, the comparison to the high-legged BMW X 6, which has been divorcing the ghosts since its release in the year 2008, is obvious. Its visual presence provides respect, but also a certain discomfort to some owners of "normal" cars around it, who always have to look up to the X 6. Nevertheless, or perhaps because of that, the Bavarian bull is a worldwide success, even if he can not be seen so often in Germany. In the US, on the other hand, where big cars are completely normal, the 4,91 meter long BMW looks rather petite.
The quasi-four-door Mercedes Off-road coupe is just as long as its white-blue counterpart, towering over it with a clear height of 1,73 meters even by three centimeters. Although the lines of both models are very similar with their coupe-like, gently sloping rear roof, there is no likelihood of confusion. "Our car is simply nicer," replies Daimler design chief Gorden Wagener with a mischievous smile to the question of the differences and refrains from any further comments on the Munich competitor.
From an objective point of view, the classic "faces" and the respective design of the headlamps offer the safest differentiation for both brands. A clear differentiator is the rear end: The narrow, reaching into the side panel tail lights of the Mercedes are separated by the spoiler plate from the rear window, the license plate slides deep under the edge of the tailgate. The X 6, however, it is centrally located between the BMW-typical lights. The bottom line is that the new Mercedes adds a touch of elegance and gentleness, clearly has the friendlier face. The second generation of the X 6, however, still has a pinch of intentional grimness for all its nobility, which its existing fans value so much.
The GLE Coupé is the second Mercedes to come out with the new letter combinations: in the future, the four-wheel-drive SUV models will be assigned to their respective limousine sisters. After this GLA (belongs to the A-class family) and the GLE Coupe (E-Class) are followed by the normal GLE (formerly M-Class) and the C-Class GLC (formerly GLK). The biggest off-roader, the GL, gets one more letter and is promoted to GLS because of its proximity to the S-Class. Only in the boxy grandfather G-Class everything remains the same. Daimler CEO Dieter Zetsche, who explained the changed Mercedes alphabet, tangled at the premiere party of the GLE certainly not a single time and joked with the 1.000 guests. "Alright? After all, we can do a quiz after who has it all on it. "
Mercedes usual the technical subtleties, which offers the elevated Coupé future users. In addition to the sophisticated permanent four-wheel drive, which is prepared for his use in the field at the push of a button, these are mainly the new Neungang automatic, many well-known assistance system and numerous other electronic helpers such as the "Active Curve System", despite the SUV-Hochbeinigkeit the To ensure controllability of a deeper on the road coupe. "The GLE Coupé combines sportiness with versatility and dynamics with robustness," explains Development Director Thomas Weber. Incidentally, this was also behind the BMW idea of putting the X 6 on the road eight years ago.
To have the hybrid is initially with three different six-cylinder engines, all with three liters of displacement. The 350 d diesel version delivers 190 kW / 258 horsepower and scores points with its lush pulling power of 620 Newton meters. The petrol engine 400 d comes on 245 kW / 333 PS. The current icing on the cake is the AMG version, which thanks to twin turbo 270 kW / 367 sends PS to all four wheels. Consumption and performance are currently as unknown as prices. Who would be surprised if they are based on those of the southern German neighbor with the X in front of it.
Author: Peter Maahn / SP-X