Set to be unveiled in NYC next week.
The M-Class nameplate has been with us since 1998, but with the German carmaker refreshing its naming strategy, the popular SUV has a new name. Say hello to the 2016 Mercedes-Benz GLE, a mid-cycle refresh of the third-gen M-Class that offers a more rounded look up front with a revised grille, a new set of headlights, new LED taillights and squared-off sportier exhaust tips that are now integrated into the bottom of the rear bumper.
Replacing the ML63 is the GLE 63 AMG, which adds some aggression in the form of a sportier front bumper, single-bar grille, 20-inch rims finished in titanium gray, a rear diffuser and quad exhaust system. Inside, the GLE gets a new multi-function steering wheel, sports seats, a freestanding infotainment system, and a new color palatte that now includes espresso brown, ginger beige, saddle brown and porcelain with a choice of trim ranging from carbon fiber and aluminum to brown burred walnut and piano black. Engines range from a 201-hp 2.1-liter four-cylinder diesel in the GLE300d 4MATIC, to a 329-hp 3.0-liter twin-turbo V6 in the GLE400, while the GLE550e adds a plug-in hybrid drivetrain for 436 hp and 479 lb-ft of torque.
Taking things up a notch are the GLE63 and GLE 63 S, which use a 5.5-liter twin-turbo V8 rated at 550 and 577 horses, respectively. The latter boasts a 0-62 mph time of 4.2 seconds. The 7G-tronic gearbox comes as standard, and AMG models benefit from the Speedshift MCT seven-speed transmission. The Mercedes GLE will be unveiled in New York next week. Check back for live pics then.