It is still an imposing appearance, the Mercedes-Benz GLE 350d 4Matic, yet its effect seems a bit paler. Where Stuttgart has just got off to a good start, has regained its leading position in the battle for global supremacy by premium manufacturers, launches new models on a weekly basis, has presented a completely new design and technology line - that's where the big thing is SUV a bit between the chairs.
Driving Report Mercedes-Benz GLE 350d
Too old to be a child of the current design language and too young to be completely redesigned, only the intermediate path of a facelift remained. The ML became the new nomenclature following the GLE, so the all-terrain offshoot of the E-Class - with which he has technologically really very little to do - and he got a new front, new lights on the rear, a new gearbox and a slightly different Interior with fresh infotainment on the way.
The fact that the renunciation of the radically new must not be bad is especially evident in the driving experience. Because that's as comfortable and difficult as you would imagine for a big Mercedes. A chubby trump and yet kommod. He is not averse to the great freedom, because contrary to most of his competitors, the GLE is not afraid of the area. Even those who have not made their little cross in the off-road package, will be amazed what the 350d is actually able to afford on the way.
In general, it is essential: you decide on profound effects of the vehicle character alone over a few crosses in the price list. The Airmatic package, for example, as installed in our test car, brings only this real sovereignty, this decoupled gliding, the aspiration hovering above things. Of course, that also applies to the things you can not necessarily grab like an air strut, such as the driver assistance package Plus, the automatic climate control in the rear, LED Intelligent Light System and not least the Comand online system.
The power of this concentrated system competence is reflected in how playfully you suddenly handle the GLE 350d. Its size does not bother you when parking, it does it all by itself, it looks for you in the blind spot and keeps the track in the narrow highway construction site. Not even the diesel engine you perceive more than such. And that, although it is still the old aggregate from its predecessor. Meaning: 3.0 liter V6 direct injection, 258PS with 620Nm. The reason for this is the new 9G-Tronic, a marvel of modern mechanical engineering. Imperceptibly, it glides through the gears, keeping the diesel engine in the fleshy torque massively and yet in terms of speed in the background that you hardly ever hear him penetrate to you.
So maybe it's not so bad that the GLE is still a bit of a Mercedes old school? Even though he is no longer in line with the competition in terms of handling or consumption, and even with connectivity technology - 3.5 tons of trailer load, well above 700kg payload and this incredibly self-confident feeling that you're driving a Mercedes-Benz.