Everyone makes a global vehicle, but some models are more focused on particular markets. The US market and the Mercedes GL are a prime example, and nothing brings this to the fore...
Mercedes-Benz GL [2013-2016]
Mercedes-Benz GL [2013-2016] Review
The front-end design emphasises the solid nature of the new GL-Glass. A steeply angled, radiator grille with a centrally positioned star dominates the front view. Two particularly powerful transverse louvres in silver with broad chrome highlights lend the vehicle a muscular look. From the side, it is clear that the GL-Class offers ample space. There is an overriding impression of length. The long wheelbase and a high roof line which extends as far as the rear wall create a dynamic silhouette. Large window areas emphasise these lines, further adding to the air of elegance whilst also ensuring excellent visibility and a bright interior atmosphere.
The interior is dominated by high-quality materials displaying handcrafted precision and attention to detail, creating a luxurious, tasteful ambience which embraces the special character of an off-roader in many respects. The smooth dashboard and door surfaces underline robustness and self-assurance, whilst the colour contrast between the darker upper section and the lighter lower section as well as the continuous wood trim elements lend the interior a sense of breadth and spaciousness.
Drivers of the new GL-Class sit behind a four-spoke multifunction steering wheel featuring aluminium-style lower spokes. Behind this is the upper section of the dashboard, also trimmed in leather, rising in a powerful arch that spans the instrument clusters. The console in the centre of the dashboard features a clearly defined, smooth design and houses easy-to-reach, logically positioned control and display functions. Here the emphasis is firmly on perfect ergonomics and tangible precision.
The Mercedes-Benz GL350 CDI Blue Efficiency comes with a longitudinally placed 2987cc engine with six-cylinder placed in a vee layout, to power all the four wheels through a seven-speed transmission. This is the same engine block that we saw on the Mercedes-Benz E350 CDI Blue Efficiency and even on the ML350CDI. Infact the block on the GL350 has been detuned as it produces 221bhp, whereas the E350 CDI produces 228bhp and the ML350CDI produces 234bhp.
This oilburner churns out 221bhp of power at 3800rpm and has a maximum torque of 510Nm packed in it. The engine is responsive, however, the SUV isn’t very quick considering the fact that it weighs about two and a half tone (2505kgs). In our acceleration run, this large SUV sprinted to 100kph mark in 10.7 seconds and completed the quarter mile in 17.4seconds.
The GL350CDI Blue Efficiency is a permanent all-wheel drive utility vehicle which comes with seven-speed automatic transmission, which the Mercedes-Benz calls it as 7G-TRONIC (which is now a transmission seen on most of the Mercedes-Benz cars). The GL350CDI can be driven in low and high all-wheel drive modes, depending on the conditions.
When both the wheels on the same differential rotate with the same speed, the 4ETS traction system takes care of it (the Mercedes-Benz calls its traction control system as the 4ETS). The GL350CDI is 4MATIC (which is Mercedes-Benz term for its four-wheel drive system). This 4MATIC system in utility vehicles comes with off-road ABS, hill-start assist and downhill speed regulation (DSR). The seven-speed transmission feels a bit lethargic, which can make overtaking on highways a bit of an issue, even though the engine has the juice to go quickly. In our in-gear test, the GL350CDI clocked the 30-50kph run in seconds and 50-70kph run in seconds.
Mercedes-Benz GL350CDI comes with a double wishbone, and the air spring suspension at its front and the rear has the four-link suspension. This utility vehicle has been designed for going off-road and so the GL350 comes with a suspension which could be raised and lowered depending on the off-road conditions, to avoid the underbelly and the bumpers of the utility vehicle from being scraped by rocks or any other obstacles.
The ride of the Mercedes-Benz GL350 CDI is cushy like any other Mercedes-Benz cars. The GL350 absorbs most of the impact harshness over bumps rather than passing them into the cabin. The cabin is well insulated and most of the road noise is hushed. The GL comes with two suspension settings viz. sport and comfort. In the comfort mode, the suspension set-up is soft and this gives a supple ride which is usually preferred during normal driving conditions.
The Mercedes-Benz GL at Rs 70 lakhs with most of the bells and whistles is a great large SUV to go for, considering the prestige of owning a three-pointed star which adds on, when compared to the other German and Japanese SUV that are available in this price range.
Mercedes-Benz GL [2013-2016] Colours
GL [2013-2016] is available/sold in the following colours in India.
Mercedes-Benz GL [2013-2016] Images
Mercedes-Benz GL [2013-2016] Expert Reviews
Mercedes-Benz GL [2013-2016] User Reviews
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