2013 Mercedes-Benz GL-Class: New York International Auto Show
- 04/04/2012 |
- by Tara Baukus Mello |
- Total Car News / Auto Show
Introduced six years ago with only minor updates since, the Mercedes-Benz GL-Class was ready for a refresh and the German automaker provided it with the 2013 Mercedes-Benz GL-Class.
The second-generation of the full-size SUV is slightly larger and has a new sportier look. Distinctive chrome edging around the windows, 19- or 21-inch standard wheels (depending on the model), split LED taillight clusters and a larger roof spoiler all add to the styling. The slightly larger exterior results in a small increase in shoulder, elbow and headroom in all three rows, while the new power easy entry feature is available to ease second row access. The power third row is standard. Seven occupants now sit in a 2-3-2 configuration.
All three trim levels of the 2013 Mercedes-Benz GL-Class featured reworked engines paired with a seven-speed automatic transmission and its 4Matic all-wheel-drive. The 3.0-liter V6 in the base GL350 BlueTEC diesel now produces 240 hp, a 30 hp improvement, and 455 lb-ft. of torque, a 55 lb-ft. increase. The 4.6-liter V8 in the GL450 has now generates 362 hp (a 27 hp increase) and 406 lb-ft. of torque (a 67 lb-ft. improvement). The 4.6-liter V8 in the top-of-the-line GL550 has a 47 hp increase and a 125 lb-ft. improvement in torque, bringing it to 429 hp and 516 lb-ft. of torque. Mercedes said it expects fuel economy to be better than the current model, though official numbers have not been released yet.
As in typical Mercedes fashion, the new GL-Class is packed with technology features. Noteworthy technology features include standard self-leveling air suspension, electromechanical steering and Active Parking Assist with a surround view camera. Also new are the Active Lane Keeping Assist and Active Blind Spot Assist systems.
Three notable new safety features are the Crosswind Stabilization System, which uses targeted brake impulses to improve control in strong crosswinds, as well as Collision Prevention Assist, which uses radar to sense an impending forward collision, warns the driver and assists with braking; as well as Attention Assist, which detects driver drowsiness.
The new look and features are likely to help the GL-Class maintain its very high Total Car Score. The 2012 Mercedes-Benz GL-Class rated 76.35, well above the segment average of 73.63 and one of the highest scores in the Ultra Luxury SUV and Crossover segment.
The 2013 Mercedes-Benz GL-Class goes on sale in September.
Here's what others are saying:
Autoblog: "Everything has been thrown at the 2013 Mercedes-Benz GL-Class to make it not only the largest SUV Mercedes offers, but the equivalent of a jacked-up S-Class"
Motor Authority: "Exterior styling is bolder, with crisper and more angular lines than current GL models. The restyling is subtle, with the biggest changes evident in the new look of the GL’s front-end. It’s a more contemporary design, yet the new GL will be instantly familiar to current owners."
Motor Trend: "Inside, the GL-Class has long been comfortable and well built, but its overall design was hardly inspiring. That's no longer the case here."
The New York Times: "Flashing its three-pointed star like a Black Forest sheriff’s badge, the GL is larger and more luxurious than its predecessor, but still as conforming and manicured as a suburban lawn."