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2017 Mercedes-Benz GLS Breaks Cover Ahead of L.A. Launch - Official Photos

What Mercedes-Benz refers to as the “S-Class among SUVs” has just officially received the letter to its name to show it: the full-sized GL-Class SUV is becoming the GLS-Class.
2017 Mercedes-Benz GLS 28 photos
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The GLS has always been the SUV of choice for those looking for both plenty of space and luxurious finishes and materials. It’s a pretty unique offering in its segment, even though a lot of smaller premium SUVs now offer seven seats - if you can call the BMW X5, Audi Q7, Range Rover Sport or Volvo XC90 “small.”

But the GLS isn’t about one thing, it’s about the whole package. And this new package has some pretty impressive dimensions: 202” (5,130 mm) long, 76.14” (1,930 mm) wide, 72.83” (1,850 mm) high and with a 121” (3,075 mm) wheelbase. These make the new GLS slightly longer and minutely narrower than the GL, but all the other dimensions remain the same.

The minor size modifications can be put down to the equally discreet styling alterations the facelifted GLS brings. The SUV remains an imposing presence on the street, but the designers did what was expected of them and adapted the GLS to the current styling specific to nearly the entire Mercedes-Benz range (only the SL and SLK roadsters and the upcoming E-Class are still to receive the mandatory update).Easy does it
Obviously, the front of the car has been the main focus with redesigned headlights, bumper and radiator grille, while at the rear the changes are less obvious - new taillight graphics and a modified bumper.

Another new feature are the numerous chrome details such as the roof rails, the side trim strips, the underguard (wow, scraping rocks with style), or the luggage compartment handle. There’s also the option for the AMG Line exterior package, which brings a sportier look with specific front and rear aprons and 21-inch AMG light-alloy wheels. And then there’s the “even more exclusive” Night package that can only be specced after the AMG Line.

If we’re to be honest, it’s the inside where the GLS needed most of the work, with the old Mercedes-Benz cockpit looking very last-decade. The quality itself wasn’t the problem (even though some plastic areas on the dashboard didn’t really fit in the whole “luxury” scheme), but the layout and design. Unfortunately, not much has changed, aside from the new COMAND Online infotainment system (that comes with a 8” - 20.3 cm - display) compatible with the “Mercedes connect me” service and the Remote Online function, the latter allowing the driver access to vehicle information from anywhere at all times. Safety first
As was expected, the new GLS offers a broad range of safety equipment fitted as standard, including COLLISION PREVENTION ASSIST PLUS, Crosswind Assist, PRE-SAFE, Brake Assist, ESP with Curve Dynamic Assist, cruise control with variable speed and STEER CONTROL, to mention just a few. And if we were to delve into the optional safety equipment, we’d be here all day.

The new GLS is just as rich in passive safety features, with “electronic crumple zones” and adaptive, two-stage airbags for passenger and driver, who also get kneebags and side airbags each, plus windowbags for all three seat rows.Power also first
Even though you’ll still see some familiar faces, the engine lineup of the new GLS is new in the sense that all units now offer better performance. The top of the line non-AMG version is the GLS550 with its powerful V8 biturbo engine delivering 449 hp, a 20 hp increase over the previous model. The smaller 3.0-liter V6 biturbo will be moving the GLS450 with the help of 362 hp and 369 lb-ft (500 Nm) from as low as 1,800 rpm.

But the model everyone wants is the Mercedes-AMG GLS63 that now comes with 577 hp and a maximum torque of 561 lb-ft (760 Nm). Fuel efficiency figures? Some other time, maybe.

The new GLS is also available as a diesel in the form of the GLS350d, which uses a 3.0-liter V6 engine good for 255 hp and a generous torque of 455 lb-ft (616 Nm).

All of these versions come with the 4MATIC four-wheel-drive system and a new 9G-TRONIC nine-speed automatic transmission as standard (except for the Mercedes-AMG GLS63, which gets a 7G-TRONIC), which can optionally work together with a low-range gearbox and a center differential lock for better off-road performance.Comfort? Yeah, first, why not?
Returning to the initial promise of an “S-Class SUV,” the new GLS comes with extended functions for the AIRMATIC air suspension, offering a ground clearance of up to 12.5 inches (306 mm). With enhanced ADS damping characteristics, the AIRMATIC suspension also offers stable driving while effortlessly switching from enhanced dynamics to maximum comfort depending on the selected program.

It works in conjunction with the DYNAMIC SELECT, which on the GLS offers up to six transmission modes: COMFORT, SLIPPERY, SPORT, INDIVIDUAL, OFF-ROAD or, if the center locking diff and low-range gearbox have been specced, OFF-ROAD+.

The GL was the last of the vast Mercedes-Benz SUV family to receive its realignment to the new brand identity, but now that the GLS is here, the Stuttgart company has a wide selection of vehicles ranging from the smaller GLA to the legendary G-Class.

Deliveries of the new GLS are expected to commence in late March next year. For now, the only available prices are those for the German market:

GLS 350 d 4MATIC €62,850 ($68,996)
GLS 400 4MATIC €64,425 ($70,725)
GLS 500 4MATIC €81,600 ($89,580)
Mercedes-AMG GLS 63 4MATIC €113,500 ($124,599*)

*USD prices converted from the German market prices at today's rates

press release
 
 
 
 
 

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