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Bold and somewhat brazen – the pinnacle in the AMG ladder – the 63 S brings supercar performance to whichever model it is fitted to. In this case it’s the new GLE and GLE Coupé .
The exterior design of the new AMG GLE is muscular and distinctive, with specific radiator grilles with vertical louvres boldly affirming its membership of the AMG model family. The side skirts, exterior mirror housings and flared wheel arches are painted in the vehicle colour, and seamlessly blend into the muscular overall look.
Different wheel and tyre combinations cover all on- and off-road requirements. The GLE base model is shod with 21-inch light-alloy wheels with AMG lettering as standard and 22-inch heels as an optional extra. The Coupé comes standard with 22-inch wheels. Other wheel variants with diameters from 21 to 22 inches are optionally available.
The high-quality interior is characteristically athletic. AMG-specific interior appointments and controls lend the cockpit a hallmark AMG atmosphere and support sporty, precise handling. The latest-generation three-spoke AMG Performance steering wheel with aluminium shift paddles impresses with its optimum driver-oriented ergonomics. AMG seats upholstered in Exclusive Nappa Leather and individually adjustable ambient lighting both come standard, while the second seat row is optionally available with full electric adjustment.
The vehicle functions are directly visualised on the instrument cluster on the left side and on the touchscreen display on the right, and visually blend into a Widescreen Cockpit. The centre console has an AMG-specific control panel with additional switches with which the 3-stage ESP®, manual transmission mode, the adaptive damping adjustment, the optional AMG Performance exhaust system, and the suspension level can be controlled.
Mercedes’ MBUX control and display concept creates an even closer bond between the vehicle, driver and passengers, with the latest version of the infotainment system contributing to the great day-to-day practicality. Through the innovative voice control – activated with the phrase ‘Hey Mercedes’ – the AI software recognises and understands practically all commands common in infotainment and vehicle control.
For the first time, the new GLE 63’s 4.0-litre V8 biturbo engine is fitted with an integrated EQ Boost starter-alternator that combines a starter motor and an alternator in a single, powerful electric motor. It provides an additional 16 kW of output and 250 Nm of torque, which can be called upon temporarily, and also supplies the 48-volt on-board electrical system to use as a power generator and perform hybrid functions. These include boost, recuperate, load point shift, gliding and the virtually imperceptible restarting of the engine with the start/stop function.
Power is regulated through a 9-speed transmission, which features extremely short shift times and fast multiple downshifts and delivers an especially emotive gear shifting experience thanks to the double-declutching function.
For increased efficiency, Mercedes-AMG has also equipped the V8 engines with cylinder shut-off. In the partial-load range, cylinders two, three, five and eight are deactivated, which crucially reduces fuel consumption. When the driver has selected the Comfort drive programme, the cylinder deactivation system is available from 1000 to 3250 rpm. The transition between these two operating states is so smooth and immediate that passengers will scarcely feel it.
The standard AMG RIDE CONTROL+ air suspension and the adaptively adjustable ADS+ (Adaptive Damping System) configured for the characteristics of an SUV combine outstanding agility and excellent vehicle dynamics with maximum traction and superb day-to-day comfort. The damping characteristics can be preselected in three stages: Comfort, Sport and Sport+, allowing a much more obvious distinction between high long-distance comfort and sporty vehicle dynamics.
Thanks to pneumatic self-levelling, the new Mercedes-AMG GLE 63 S 4MATIC+ maintains a constant ride height regardless of the vehicle load. This can be adjusted depending on the driving mode, or manually using a rocker switch in the centre console.
The all-wheel drive is controlled depending on the selected stage of the 3-stage Electronic Stability Program ESP® – from sporty, with a focus on safety, to highly dynamic. To further improve traction and dynamism, the Mercedes-AMG GLE 63 S4MATIC+and Coupé have an electronically controlled locking differential at the rear axle as standard. The slip is thus suppressed at the inner wheel on bends, ensuring optimum grip and maximum handling safety. The driver is therefore able to accelerate out of corners earlier and with more power thanks to the improved traction. The vehicle remains more stable when braking from high speed, while the limited-slip differential also improves traction when accelerating from a standstill.
The new Mercedes-AMG GLE 63 S and Coupé models are equipped with 400 x 38 mm brake discs at the front, plus 370 x 32 mm discs at the rear. As an option, a high-performance ceramic brake system can be ordered, saving weight compared with the compound discs and thus reducing the unsprung masses.
The optional Driving Assistance package supports the driver on a situational basis, with speed adaptation, steering, lane changes and even when there is a risk of collision. Components include Active Distance Assist DISTRONIC, Active Speed Limit Assist, extended automatic restart on motorways, speed adjustment based on the route with End of Tailback Function, Active Steering Assist, Active Lane Change Assist, Active Emergency Stop Assist, Emergency Lane Function, Active Brake Assist, Cornering and Cross-Traffic Function, End of Tailback Emergency Brake Function, Evasive Steering Assist, Active Lane Keeping Assist, Active Blind Spot Assist, Exit Warning Function, PRE-SAFE® PLUS and Traffic Sign Assist.
The Driving Assistance package Plus offers an exceptionally high level of comfort and safety. It additionally includes Active Stop-and-Go Assist, which provides support when driving in traffic, while in the event of a side collision, optional PRE-SAFE® Impulse Side can offer additional protection.
This SUV represents the bragging rights of a team let loose in creating a vehicle that combines technological innovation, family car accommodation and supercar prowess. An unnecessary evil in that its abilities stretch beyond the norms of rational practicality, but at the same time it is pure hedonistic joy. In a moment of rational pause, one could have almost as much fun and save more than a million Rand by purchasing the Mercedes-AMG GLE 53 4MATIC as an alternative?
Mercedes-AMG GLE 63 S 4MATIC+ R 2,885,000
Mercedes-AMG GLE 63 S 4MATIC Coupe R 2,948,000
Service and warranty
The GLE range is sold with a 5-year/100 000km maintenance plan.
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