Moses Akaigwe , 08072100049
The Mercedes-Benz GLE has marked a new era for the mid-sized SUV segment. Years after getting a new identity with a change from the M-Class nomenclature to the GLE, the best-selling Mercedes-Benz SUV continues to set the pace.
In October 2018, the latest installment of the GLE was presented to the public for the first time at the Paris Motor Show with a number of mouthwatering innovations that are revolutionising the premium SUV segment.
And only a few months after, Weststar Associates Limited, authorised general distributor of Mercedes-Benz in Nigeria, is promising that the new GLE, which features advanced technology, will be introduced into the Nigerian market this first quarter (with April as the target month).
The new GLE comes with a handful of innovations that have completely reconceived the SUV trendsetter. Features like the E-Active Body Control, the latest generation of Mercedes-Benz assistance systems, 4Matic, which makes the GLE more off-road capable than ever, seating comfort with corresponding interior spaciousness and MBUX, have been highlighted as the most important innovations in the new GLE.
The interior design is luxurious and impressive with a sporty cockpit design. The dashboard support flows into the door panels, and the integral trim element likewise extends around the driver and front passenger areas to meet the doors. All the controls and displays are now in a new design.
Thanks to its considerably longer wheelbase than its predecessor’s (2995mm, plus 80mm), the new GLE comes with significantly more space, especially for passengers in the rear. Legroom in the second seat row has increased by 69mm to 1,045mm. Headroom in the rear with the standard, fixed rear seat unit and 40:20:40 split backrest has been increased by 33mm to 1,025mm. As a world first in the SUV segment, a second seat row with 6 fully electric adjustments is now available. Another key highlight is the luggage capacity, which is up to 825 litres behind the rear seats and up to 2055 litres when the second seat row is folded down.
The Mercedes-Benz User Experience (MBUX) is one of the key highlights in the new GLE, it makes its debut in a Mercedes-Benz SUV after its successful introduction in the A-Class last year. This latest generation multimedia system comes with even more improved functions when compared to the first edition in the A-Class. Improvements that this revolutionary system debuts include two large 12.3-inch/ 31.2 cm screens as standard, which are arranged side-by-side for an impressive wide-screen look.
Users can set up the MBUX with four different styles from Modern Classic, Sport, Progressive and Discreet style. Key features of the MBUX in the GLE include; the widescreen cockpit, navigation services, smartphone integration, vehicle set up app, Linguatronic voice control, LTE communications module for Mercedes me connect services and Burmester surround sound system.
The Mercedes-Benz GLE 450 4MATIC comes with a 6-cylinder petrol engine systematically electrified with 48-volt technology. It has an estimated output of 270 kW (367 hp) and torque of 500 Nm. In the new GLE, 4MATIC comes with fully variable all-wheel drive that controls the torque distribution between the front and rear axle from 0‑100 percent depending on the selected driving mode, this greatly enhances the off road capacity of the new GLE. In all variants of the new GLE, power is transmitted by the 9G-TRONIC automatic transmission, the broad ratio spread of gears 1 to 9 allows a clearly perceptible reduction in engine speed and is a decisive factor behind the high level of energy, efficiency and ride comfort.
The latest generation of Mercedes-Benz assistance systems have been introduced in the new GLE, including the Active Brake Assist which helps the driver to brake in good time when approaching the end of a tailback; the Active Steering Assist, Active Stop-and-Go Assist and the Active Blind Spot Assist which helps lower the risk of a collision with other road users.
Commenting on the coming of the new GLE, Managing Director, Weststar Associates Limited, Mr. Mirko Plath, described it as one of the welcome innovations in the global automobile industry. He pointed out that with features like the MBUX the world continues moving towards a more digitalised era and that Nigeria isn’t left out..