Latest 2019 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class Models Reviews by Edmunds

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With so many configurations and performance options to choose from, we still like the standard GLE 400 4Matic. The engine is smooth and performance is more than enough to suit the needs of most people. It's also capable of towing 7,200 pounds.

We'd also spring for the Premium 2 package for the adaptive LED headlights, multicolor ambient lighting, rear sunshades, and the upgraded audio system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. Ventilated seats and a cabin air-purification system are nice-to-have stand-alone options as well.

Overall Review/Rating of Auto Review Expert, Edmund: 7.7 / 10

At first glance, the 2019 Mercedes-Benz GLE would seem to have missed the mark, failing to offer a third row of seats or flash some off-road credibility with rugged styling and beefy hardware. But upon closer inspection, the GLE has found a luxurious sweet spot, providing excellent comfort for four adults and offering a truly wide range of performance-driven personalities.

Powering the base GLE 400 is a 329-horsepower twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 engine that not only provides adequate performance in daily driving situations but is also capable of towing up to 7,200 pounds. And if a quicker pace is required, the AMG GLE 43 is equipped with a 385-hp twin-turbo V6 engine and a suitably upgraded performance suspension. But if nothing but a V8 will do, the AMG GLE 63 and 63 S offer a twin-turbo 5.5-liter V8 engine that pumps out 550 hp and 577 hp, respectively. That's certain to get your boat, and your family, to the lake in record time.

No matter which GLE model you choose, the interior is beautifully outfitted with copious amounts of leather, wood and suede as well as a heaping dose of some of the latest infotainment and safety technology from Mercedes-Benz. If you're in the market for a luxurious SUV, any one of the GLE SUVs should be at the top of your list.

Take a Look at Some of The 2019 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class models

The 2019 Mercedes-Benz GLE is a five-passenger SUV that slots between the GLC compact crossover and the three-row GLS. It's offered in four trims, each with a distinct powertrain. Mercedes' 4Matic all-wheel-drive system is standard on all trims.

Powering the GLE 400 is a 3.0-liter twin-turbo V6 (329 horsepower, 354 pound-feet of torque) and a nine-speed automatic transmission. All-wheel drive (4Matic) is standard. The generous list of standard features starts with 19-inch alloy wheels, automatic wipers, a sunroof, power-folding and auto-dimming mirrors, and a power liftgate.

Inside, you'll find dual-zone automatic climate control, a power-adjustable steering wheel, heated front seats, a 10-way power driver seat (with four-way power lumbar adjustment and memory functions), simulated-leather upholstery, Mercedes' COMAND electronics interface with a 7-inch display, a CD player, and two USB ports. There are also keyless start and 4G LTE Wi-Fi. Standard advanced safety features include a rearview camera, an automatic emergency braking system and crosswind assist.

Three optional packages that encompass many of the features are available for the GLE. The Premium 1 package is one of the most comprehensive for the GLE 400, adding keyless ignition and entry, a navigation system with an 8-inch screen, a touchpad controller for the central display, satellite radio, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay smartphone integration, a 14-speaker premium Harman Kardon audio system, a 115-volt household-style power outlet, blind-spot monitoring and lane departure warning.

The Premium 2 package adds adaptive LED headlights, automatic high-beam control, heated and cooled front cupholders, multi-color interior ambient lighting, illuminated doorsills, rear-window sunshades, and a fold-down pass-through behind the rear-center armrest. On top of that, the Premium 3 package features a 360-degree parking camera, adaptive cruise control, automated steering, a collision avoidance system, lane departure intervention and an automated parking system.

The first of the performance-oriented models is the AMG GLE 43. It features a twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 (385 hp, 384 lb-ft), a nine-speed automatic transmission, 20-inch wheels, an AMG-tuned adaptive air suspension, a sport exhaust, exterior styling upgrades, a flat-bottom steering wheel, simulated-leather upholstery, and the contents of the Premium 1 package.

Next up is the AMG GLE 63, which adds a stout twin-turbocharged 5.5-liter V8 (550 hp, 516 lb-ft), a seven-speed automatic transmission, upgraded brakes, summer performance tires, active stabilizer bars, a sport steering wheel, a 10-way power passenger seat (with four-way power lumbar and memory functions), upgraded leather upholstery, wood trim, a faux suede headliner, and the contents of the Premium 2 package.

SEE ALSO: Interior Designs of Latest 2019 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class

Finally, there's the top-dog AMG GLE 63 S, motivated by an even more powerful version of the turbo V8 (577 hp, 561 lb-ft). It also adds 21-inch wheels, red brake calipers and faux suede steering-wheel inserts.

Many features included in the upper trims or packages can be added separately. Notable stand-alone options include a panoramic sunroof, a trailer hitch, tri-zone climate control, multicontour front seats with massage, ventilated front seats, heated rear seats, a heated steering wheel, a rear-seat entertainment system, and a 14-speaker Harman Kardon or a 14-speaker Bang & Olufsen premium audio system.

Photos of  Latest 2019 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class Models

Each vehicle typically comes in multiple versions that are fundamentally similar. The ratings in this review are based on our full test of the Mercedes-Benz AMG GLE 43 (turbo 3.0L V6 | 9-speed automatic | AWD).

NOTE: Since this test was conducted, the current GLE has received some revisions, including the GLE 43's increase in horsepower from 362 to 385 hp. Our findings remain broadly applicable to this year's GLE.

Driving 7.0
The AMG GLE 43 is not a true AMG but has the fun and playful nature that most buyers want. Rough city streets are not its forte. Instead, the GLE shines on the open road or a mountain pass.

Acceleration 7.0
For the most part, the AMG GLE 43 accelerates smoothly and willingly. Quick, small gas pedal changes (such as when hesitating while crossing an intersection) lead to sluggish responses as the transmission and turbocharged engine figure out what to do.

Braking 8.0
The brake pedal's travel is long and soft, which doesn't inspire much confidence in the brakes, but actual stopping performance is good. And there's still a lot of steering ability even when braking aggressively, which lets the GLE navigate more easily around obstacles in panic situations.

Steering 7.0
The steering is responsive, and the GLE tracks straight and true. Sport and Sport+ driving modes progressively add more weightiness. There's decent feedback when the front wheels are loaded up, inspiring a surprising amount of driver confidence.

Handling 6.0
Handling is a mixed bag. The stiffly tuned suspension makes the GLE feel sporty around town, but hard driving reveals a lot of body roll and lack of vehicular balance. In Sport+, the suspension is too firm and the front end loses traction.

Drivability 7.0
The GLE excels on the highway and is quick to accelerate when you need it. The transmission's shifting can seem excessive in certain situations, such as when driving up grades.

Comfort 8.0
Once you get the myriad seat adjustments sorted (and stored in memory), the GLE is a fantastic way to travel long distances. Heck, go ahead and take a road trip with your family or friends. There's plenty of room in back.

Seat Comfort 8.0
The driver's seat offers numerous adjustments, except when bolstering the thighs. Because of that, the bottom half of your body doesn't feel as secure as the top half. The padding is stiff, but the massage feature works very well.

Ride Comfort 7.0
The AMG GLE 43's ride quality is disappointingly harsh. While you expect firmness from a sport-tuned model, it seems excessive in this vehicle. The regular GLE 400 rides more comfortably.

Noise & Vibration 7.0
Oddly, wind noise is the main intruder. Tire and road noise levels are minimal.

Climate Control 8.0
The optional tri-zone system is quiet and responsive. We like the easy-to-use controls and the enhanced ways to distribute airflow. The rear vents are well-placed and move a good amount of air. The seat heaters are effective, even through thick winter layers.

Interior 8.5
The best feature of the GLE is its high-class interior. There are multiple choices for seat and interior materials as well as the trim. The options will overwhelm many and delight some. The two-pane panoramic sunroof is a must-have.

Ease of Use 8.5
Aside from the ambiguity of the COMAND knob to control the audio and navigation system, the rest of the controls are intuitive and easy to use. The only sore spot is the number pad, which looks out of place in the otherwise modern cockpit.

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Getting in/Getting out 9.0
You'll find large door openings in the front and rear, and the just-right height makes it easy to get in and out.

Driving Position 8.5
The GLE has an excellent driving position, and the seat offers a wide range of adjustments that make it perfect for tall and short drivers. The thick AMG steering wheel might be uncomfortable for drivers with smaller hands.

Roominess 8.0
Passengers won't feel claustrophobic inside the GLE thanks to ample room in all dimensions. But those narrow of hip may feel as if they're swimming in the front and rear seats.

Visibility 8.5
Visibility is excellent all around, and typical blind-spot regions are mostly remedied by the 360-degree parking camera. However, the camera is difficult to access on demand. You must either put it in reverse to inspect your surroundings or go through a convoluted vehicle menu.

Quality 9.5
The GLE features excellent build quality. All the varied interior pieces fit together perfectly, without any creaks or rattles. The exterior body gaps and paint were excellent, as was the leather quality on the seats and the dash.

Utility 8.5
Cargo space is about what you'd expect for this segment. The cargo area features nice loops to secure items, but the center-seat pass-through is an optional extra found in the Premium 2 package. With the adjustable suspension and the optional Class III hitch, the GLE would make a great weekend toy hauler.

Small-item Storage 7.0
The barely adequate interior storage is limited to the center console, an odd recess underneath the center stack and door pockets. You expect a little more in a luxury SUV.

Cargo Space 8.5
The cargo area is taller than it is wide, and the load floor is surprisingly high. The rear seat bottoms fold up, creating an additional cargo area, and the seatbacks then fold down flat — but you have to lower the headrest to get everything to fit.

Child Safety Seat Accommodation 10.0
Four LATCH anchors are located prominently on the rear seats, with three mounts on top. This setup allows for three car seat positions: two outboard and one inboard. The top mounts are easy to access from the trunk, and the anchors are easily accessible in their own little pockets.

Towing 7.5
The GLE is rated to tow up to 7,200 pounds, but you need to opt for the proper Class III hitch.

Technology 7.5
We're happy to see Apple CarPlay in the GLE, but the lack of a touchscreen makes it all but unusable. The control and adjustability are beyond what the COMAND interface can handle. The touchpad and dial are two separate systems, and actions and motions don't carry over.

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