Mercedes-Benz will launch the facelift of its M-class SUV — the GLE-class — sometime this year. Rebadged as part of the company’s new nomenclature system, the GLE-class will take on the likes of BMW X5, Range Rover Sport and the new Volvo XC90.
On the outside, the GLE-class gets the company’s family front-end styling that was showcased on the GLE Coupe at the Los Angeles motor show last year. The SUV also gets new LED lights front and rear, large air-dams, silver skid-plate front and back and twin rectangular exhausts and roof rails.
Inside, the GLE gets a new seven-inch free-standing infotainment screen along with a wide choice of trim and upholstery colours including wood and carbon-fibre trim bits. The GLE also gets optional AMG add-ons such as Artico leather upholstery, new multifunction sports steering, restyled front and rear bumper and 20-inch alloy wheels.
In India, the GLE-class is expected to carry forward the existing engines from the M-class, i.e. the 2.1-litre 203bhp diesel unit in the GLE 250d and the 3.0-litre 255bhp V6 in the GLE 350d. An AMG version is also expected in the form of the GLE 63 AMG S.
The GLE 63 AMG S gets an AMG body-kit, larger AMG wheels, a new steering and new AMG embossed leather upholstery. Under the hood, it gets AMG’s hand-assembled 577bhp 5.5-litre twin-turbo V8 which allows the car to sprint from 0-100 in a claimed 4.2 seconds and reach a top speed of 250kph.
Last year, Mercedes had announced its new nomenclature system that aimed at bringing all models apart from its core models —the A, B, C, E and S-class — under a similar nomenclature. The renaming of the M-class as the GLE becomes a part of the new nomenclature system to tie all the models to its core series, with the first and last letter referring to the series. The ‘G’ ties the model to the G-class or the company’s oldest 4x4 SUV while the ‘E’ ties model to the E-class core model range.
The table below shows the rebadged cars under the new nomenclature system: