New Mercedes-AMG GLE 53 Coupe trip overview
If you happen to thought the previous Mercedes GLE Coupe was a bit incongruous then you definitely’d be proper. When the third-generation M-Class was launched in 2012, a coupe model was by no means on the playing cards.
However to money in on a rising want amongst clients for extra coupe-inspired SUVs, Mercedes created its first in 2015. Full with a brand new badge – ‘GLE Coupe’ – it arrived with 3.0-litre V6 petrol and diesel engines, and a 5.0-litre V8 for the AMG 63 mannequin.
• Greatest quick household automobiles on sale
The brand new second-generation GLE was designed from the outset to be supplied each as a traditional SUV and as a coupe model. “This time round we’ve targeted not simply on the automotive being luxurious and spacious, but additionally on the way in which it drives. It has to drive pretty much as good because it appears,” says Mercedes’ director of SUV improvement, Dr. Andreas Zygan. “Suggestions from our clients on the previous automotive was that it didn’t drive the way in which it appeared.”
The usual GLE has been on sale within the UK for the reason that early a part of 2019, however that is our first style of the Coupe forward of its launch later this 12 months. So assured is Mercedes in giving the Coupe a sporting aptitude over the usual GLE, the agency’s execs have introduced us to the Transfăgărășan Freeway in Romania; a highway set excessive within the Carpathian Mountains that’s extensively thought-about to be essentially the most technical of its sort in Europe.
“We haven’t simply taken the GLE and made a brand new physique in white,” says Zygan, “however we’ve given it a 60mm shorter wheelbase in comparison with the usual GLE, the suspension is way stiffer and we’ve given the automotive our e-active physique management system so it doesn’t roll round corners. There’s additionally a unique, faster steering rack and the gearbox ratios have been modified; they sound like little issues however they add as much as make the Coupe really feel completely different from the GLE.”
We hop right into a gleaming white Mercedes-AMG 53 Coupe on the backside part of the run to the summit. On the wheel is Steffen Nowack, challenge chief of the Mercedes-AMG GLE, in an equally gleaming white shirt. The climb to the highest is extreme proper from the off; the highway switches backwards and forwards while steeply rising, and right here you want energy.
The GLE 53 Coupe will get considered one of AMG’s new 429bhp 3.0-litre six-cylinder petrol engines with 48-volt mild-hybrid help, mated to four-wheel drive and a nine-speed automated gearbox. Different Coupes can be found, together with a few diesels, but it surely’s the AMG that really slingshots out of corners while emitting a deep six-cylinder growl for your entire run as much as the highest.
Nowack, an AMG man for practically 18 years, has labored on all of Mercedes’ AMG SUVs together with the bonkers V12-engined G 65, and courses the brand new GLE 53 Coupe as one of many agency’s most interesting. “We’ve actually received the stability proper right here, between refinement and sporty dealing with. That’s a tough factor to do in a giant SUV.”
Regardless of its 22-inch cast alloy wheels, the trip is on the fitting aspect of agency and the way in which the automotive modifications path is fairly exceptional. The AMG GLE Coupe will get Merc’s new e-active physique management that does a surprising job at holding the automotive flat by the Transfăgărășan’s quicker, extra flowing sections as we close to the summit.
Biking up by the driving modes unlocks an much more sporting character; extra energy is distributed to the rear wheels and the gear modifications are made with slightly thump by the automotive. You wouldn’t confuse the GLE with a two-door coupe within the conventional sense, but it surely feels very far faraway from a conventional five-door SUV.