Mercedes-Benz GL-Class

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Mercedes-Benz GL-Class
Mercedes-Benz GL 350 BlueTEC 4MATIC Sport-Paket AMG (X 166) – Frontansicht, 31. Dezember 2012, Düsseldorf.jpg
Manufacturer DaimlerChrysler (2007)
Daimler AG (2007-present)
Also called Mercedes-Benz GLS-Class (2016-present)
Production 2006–present
Model years 2007–present
Body and chassis
Class Full-size luxury SUV
Body style 4-door SUV
Layout Front-engine, (4WD/AWD) 4matic

The Mercedes-Benz GLS-Class is a full-size luxury SUV produced by the German carmaker Mercedes-Benz since 2006. It is a three-row, seven-passenger vehicle positioned above the GLE-Class in the lineup and is the flagship of the Mercedes-Benz SUV line. The GLS shares the same unibody architecture with the GLE-Class. The vast majority of GLS-Class vehicles are assembled at Mercedes-Benz US International, Inc, in Tuscaloosa County, Alabama except for a small number of early production 2007 model vehicles which were manufactured in Germany. The first generation (X164) was manufactured between 2006 and 2012 and was replaced in 2012 by the new generation GL-Class (X166).

From 2016, with the release of the facelifted X166 second generation model, the GL-Class was renamed as Mercedes-Benz GLS-Class as per the revised nomenclature adopted by the brand. Under this scheme, SUVs use the base name "GL", followed by the model's placement in Mercedes-Benz hierarchy. The "G" is for Geländewagen (German for off-road vehicle) and alludes the long-running G-Wagen. This is followed by the letter "L" that acts as a linkage with the letter "S"—the GLS being the SUV equivalent to the S-Class.[1][2]

The GL was the first full-size SUV from a German automaker. Its main competitors are the Land Rover Range Rover, Lexus LX, Cadillac Escalade, and the Lincoln Navigator along with the upcoming Audi Q8 and BMW X7.

First generation (X164; 2006–2012)[edit]

First generation (X164)
Mercedes GL 450 CDI 4MATIC (X164) Facelift front 20100926.jpg
Production 2006–2012
Model years 2007–2012
Assembly United States Tuscaloosa, Alabama
Designer Steve Mattin (2002)[3]
Engine Petrol
3.0 L V6
4.6 L V8
5.5 L V8
3.0 L OM642 V6
4.0 L OM629 V8
Transmission 7-speed 7G-Tronic automatic
Wheelbase 3,075 mm (121.1 in)
Length 2006–09: 5,085 mm (200.2 in)
2010–2012: 200.6 in (5,095 mm)
Width 2006–09: 1,920 mm (75.6 in)
2010–2012: 76.4 in (1,941 mm)
Height 1,840 mm (72.4 in)
Curb weight 2,465–2,585 kg (5,434–5,699 lb)
Predecessor Mercedes-Benz ML-Class (7 seat models)
Mercedes-Benz GL 420 CDI

The GL-Class (codename X164) debuted at the 2006 North American International Auto Show. It was released along the same time as the similarly sized Audi Q7, being the first German three-row, 7-passenger crossover SUVs on the market at the time; later joined by the second-generation BMW X5 that has an optional third-row seat increasing capacity up to 7. Except for the Acura MDX, most three row luxury SUVs at the time were body-on-frame vehicles such as the Cadillac Escalade and Lexus LX.

The GL lacks the typical SUV boxy styling and body-on-frame construction of the G-Class in favor of an elongated and widened version of the M-Class's unibody architecture. The GL has much more luxurious equipment and better road manners than the civilian G-Class vehicles. Although the GL-Class is designed for the US market, it is also sold in Europe, albeit in far smaller numbers. The GL-Class won 2007 Motor Trend SUV of the Year.


Standard features on the Mercedes-Benz GL350 BlueTec and GL450 include air conditioning with dual-zone climate controls, interior air filter, tilt/telescopic premium leather-wrapped steering wheel with radio controls, cruise control, heated 8-way power front seats, 6-disc CD changer, outside-temperature indicator, and universal garage door opener. On the facelifted 2010 model, the GLs also incorporate new daytime running lights as well as LED tail lamps for improved visibility. 19" 5-spoke wheels come standard with all-season tires and new chrome beltline, window trim, and roof rails also now come standard. A chrome loadsill and front and rear chrome looking skid plates come standard. The GL also comes with Airmatic suspension, a 3D instrument cluster, and 7-way seating with power 50/50 folding third row seats.

The GL350 BlueTec features a 3.0L 210 hp (157 kW) 400 lb·ft (542 N·m) turbocharged V6, with a reduction in NOx emissions of 80%. The starting MSRP is $1,000 less than the GL450. The GL450 4Matic has a 335 hp (250 kW) V8. The GL550 has a 382 hp (285 kW) 5.5L V8.

Standard on the Mercedes GL550 but optional for the lower trims include a power tilt/telescopic wood/leather-wrapped steering wheel w/radio controls (replacing tilt/telescopic leather-wrapped steering wheel w/radio controls), leather upholstery, memory system, power liftgate, premium sound system, navigation system w/voice recognition, rear radio controls, rearview camera, and heated rear seats.

Second generation (X166; 2013–present)[edit]

Second generation (X166)
Mercedes-Benz GL 500 4MATIC (X 166) – Frontansicht, 13. Juni 2014, Düsseldorf.jpg
Also called Mercedes-Benz GLS-Class (facelift)
Production 2012–present
Model years 2013–present
Assembly United States Tuscaloosa, Alabama
India: Pune, Maharashtra[4]
Indonesia: Wanaherang, Bogor[5]
Thailand: Samut Prakan
Layout 4WD (4MATIC)
Engine Petrol
3.0 L Biturbo V6
4.7 L Biturbo V8
5.5 L Biturbo V8
3.0 L Turbo V6
Transmission 7-speed 7G-Tronic automatic
9-speed 9G-Tronic automatic
Wheelbase 3,075 mm (121.1 in)
Length 5,120 mm (201.6 in)
Width 1,934 mm (76.1 in)
Height 1,850 mm (72.8 in)
Curb weight 2,455–2,580 kg (5,412–5,688 lb)
Mercedes-Benz GL 350 BlueTEC

The new model is bigger, more luxurious and full of tech gadgets. Even though it is bigger, MB managed to make the new GL-class 100 kilograms (220 lb) lighter. Daimler assures that the new generation is also more efficient thanks to BlueEFFICIENCY package (start/stop system, intelligent alternator management, electric steering etc.) and redesigned petrol and diesel engines. Petrol versions GL400 and GL500 (450&550 in the USA) are now turbocharged. The GL (X166) went on sale in September 2012 in the United States. It won 2013 Motor Trend SUV of the Year.

The standard equipment has improved over the X166's predecessor. It now offers a range of technical appointments: ATTENTION ASSIST, COLLISION PREVENTION ASSIST, 9 airbags, Crosswind Assist and pedestrian protection including Active Bonnet, self-leveling AIRMATIC suspension, electric easy-pack tailgate. The GL500 (550 in the USA) adds Active Parking Assist, Intelligent Light System, KEYLESS-GO access system and front multicontour seats with memory function. The standard multimedia system is Audio 20 CD with USB and Bluetooth interface. The new COMAND Online multimedia system is also available as an option, featuring 3D menu and internet access. COMAND Online can be combined with Bang & Olufsen BeoSound surround system.

Selected optional features include Active Lane Keeping Assist, Active Blind Spot Assist and Speed Limit Assist, DISTRONIC PLUS, Intelligent Light System (ILS) and an AMG Sport package, including larger 19-inch ventilated and perforated brake discs, 21-inch wheels and different AMG bumpers.

An ACTIVE CURVE SYSTEM with active anti-roll bars for body roll compensation was introduced[6]

GL 63 AMG[edit]

Mercedes-Benz GL 63 AMG
Mercedes-Benz GL 63 AMG

The GL 63 AMG is powered by AMG hand-built M157 engine, which has same output as an ML 63 with optional Performance package. Thanks to 557 hp V8, it manages the 0–100 km/h sprint in 4.9 seconds and the top speed is 250 km/h (155 mph)[7]

It features a start-stop system and 557 hp are transmitted by the AMG SPEEDSHIFT PLUS 7G-TRONIC gearbox. It has three modes: "Controlled Efficiency" (start-stop system is active and in this mode it accelerates in 2nd gear), "Sport" and "Manual". The AMG model is equipped with AMG RIDE CONTROL, combined with AIRMATIC and ACTIVE CURVE SYSTEM with three modes: "Comfort", "Sport" and "Sport plus". The air suspension is active and it lowers the car at higher speeds.

The GL 63 comes with 5-spoke 21-inch wheels (295/40 tires), perforated brakes, ARTICO leather adjustable sport seats, AMG floor mats, electronic assistants etc.



Availability of models varies depending on markets. For example, the US will not get the diesel for the 2017 model year due to pending testing by the EPA because of new diesel testing requirements.

All versions of the GL-Class up to 2016 are equipped with a seven speed 7G-TRONIC PLUS automatic transmission except the GL 63 AMG which is fitted with a seven speed AMG SPEEDSHIFT PLUS 7G-TRONIC transmission. All versions of the GLS class (2017 onward) are mated to the nine speed 9G-Tronic automatic transmission while the GLS 63 AMG retains the AMG SPEEDSHIFT PLUS 7G-TRONIC transmission.

Model Years Fuel Type Power@rpm Torque@rpm Emissions CO2
GLS 350d 2012– Diesel 2,987 cc (182 cu in) 24V V6 turbo Mercedes-Benz OM 642 LS DE 30 LA 260 PS (191 kW; 256 hp)@3600 620 N·m (457 lb·ft)@1600–2400 199–209 g/km
GL 400/450 BlueEFFICIENCY 2012–2014 Petrol 4,663 cc (285 cu in) 32V V8 biturbo Mercedes-Benz M 278 DE 46 AL red. 367 PS (270 kW; 362 hp)@5000–6000 550 N·m (406 lb·ft)@1500–4000
GL/GLS 400/450 BlueEFFICIENCY 2015– Petrol 2,996 cc (183 cu in) 24V V6 biturbo Mercedes-Benz M 276 DE 30 AL 367 PS (270 kW; 362 hp)@5500–6000 500 N·m (369 lb·ft)@1700–4000
GL 500/550 BlueEFFICIENCY 2012–2016 Petrol 4,663 cc (285 cu in) 32V V8 biturbo Mercedes-Benz M 278 DE 46 AL 435 PS (320 kW; 429 hp)@5250 700 N·m (516 lb·ft)@1800–3500 269 g/km
GLS 500/550 BlueEFFICIENCY 2017– Petrol 4,663 cc (285 cu in) 32V V8 biturbo Mercedes-Benz M 278 DE 46 AL 455 PS (335 kW; 449 hp)@5250–5500 700 N·m (516 lb·ft)@1800–3500
GL 63 AMG 2012–2016 Petrol 5,461 cc (333 cu in) 32V V8 biturbo Mercedes-Benz M 157 DE 55 AL 557 PS (410 kW; 549 hp)@5750 760 N·m (561 lb·ft)@2000–5000 288 g/km
GLS 63 AMG 2017– Petrol 5,461 cc (333 cu in) 32V V8 biturbo Mercedes-Benz M 157 DE 55 AL 585 PS (430 kW; 577 hp)@5500 760 N·m (561 lb·ft)@1750–5250

Mercedes-Benz GLS-Class (facelift; 2016–present)[edit]

Mercedes-Benz GLS 350d (Australia)
Mercedes-Benz GLS 350d (Australia)
Mercedes-AMG GLS 63 (Israel)

The update was unveiled in November 2015. The GLS will be available to order from December 2015, with deliveries in the US market from late-spring 2016.[8] It will be replaced by a facelifted model under the GLS nameplate, corresponding with the new Mercedes-Benz naming scheme. Compared with its predecessor, the new generation features improved efficiency, additional DYNAMIC SELECT transmission modes, improved air suspension system (AIRMATIC) with enhanced damping system (ADS), nine-speed 9G-TRONIC automatic transmission, state-of-the-art assistance systems and the latest generation of Mercedes-Benz telematics which includes internet access and remote-start capability. A new, dynamic exterior and revised, luxurious interior clearly underscore the impressive character of the GLS. With the 2017-model-year facelift, designers have adapted the full-size luxury SUV to the current Mercedes-Benz design idiom. On the exterior, focus has been placed on a redesign of the front end, while the rear has been modernized around the bumper and with full LED tail lamps. Eye-catching highlights in the interior include a newly designed instrument panel with Media Display, new 3-spoke multifunction steering wheel, modified center console with touchpad and new trim options.[8]


Calendar year US sales
2006 18,776
2007 26,396[9]
2008 23,328
2009 15,012[10]
2010 19,943
2011 25,139[11]
2012 26,042[12]
2013 29,912
2014 26,597[13]
2015 27,707[14]
2016 30,442[15]


  1. ^ Ewing, Steven (11 November 2014). "Mercedes renames utility vehicles, repositions Maybach as sub-brand". Autoblog. Retrieved 12 November 2014. 
  2. ^ "Mercedes-Benz expands brand world and introduces new nomenclature: Mercedes-Maybach for the ultimate in exclusivity and individuality". Daimler AG. 11 November 2014. Retrieved 12 November 2014. 
  3. ^ "Interview with Steve Mattin, Senior Designer, Mercedes – Benz". 
  4. ^ "Mercedes rolls out new GL-Class from Pune plant". The Hindu. 26 August 2013. Retrieved 8 June 2016. 
  5. ^ "Mercedez-Benz Indonesia: Launch of Assembled GL-Class, GL 350 CDI". German–Indonesian Chamber of Industry and Commerce. 12 September 2013. Retrieved 8 June 2016. 
  6. ^ The new Mercedes-Benz GL-Class: First class in all conditions
  7. ^ "2013 Mercedes-Benz GL63 AMG instrumented test". Car and Driver. Retrieved 2016-11-23. 
  8. ^ a b "The new Mercedes-Benz GLS". Mercedes-Benz USA | Online Newsroom. Retrieved 2017-07-28. 
  9. ^ "Mercedes-Benz USA's Sales Drop 32.1 Percent in December 2008 | eMercedesBenz – The Unofficial Mercedes-Benz Weblog". eMercedesBenz. 2009-01-05. Retrieved 2010-03-21. 
  10. ^ "Highest Sales Month for the Year at 21,469 Brings Mercedes-Benz to an... – MONTVALE, N.J., Jan. 4, 2011 /PRNewswire/". New Jersey. PR Newswire. Retrieved 2012-01-06. 
  11. ^ Mercedes-Benz USA (5 January 2012). "Mercedes-Benz Records the Highest Year on Record with Sales of 264,460". PR Newswire. 
  12. ^ Mercedes-Benz USA (3 January 2013). "Mercedes-Benz USA Hits Its Highest-Ever U.S. Volume With Sales of 305,072". PR Newswire. 
  13. ^ Mercedes-Benz USA (5 January 2015). "Mercedes-Benz Delivers Record-Breaking 2014 Sales Volume of 330,391, Up 5.7%". PR Newswire. 
  14. ^ (7 January 2016). "2015 Year End U.S. Vehicle Sales Rankings". 
  15. ^ (6 January 2017). "2016 Year End U.S. Vehicle Sales Rankings". 

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