The GLE 53 has a 3.0-litre in-line six-cylinder engine fitted with twin turbochargers (one conventional turbo and one electric compressor) plus EQ Boost. The latter is a 48V electric starter-generator that adds extra acceleration, taking the big SUV from zero to 100km/h in 5.3 seconds.
Output is an impressive 320kW of power and 520Nm of torque from the engine, plus up to 16kW and 250Nm from the EQ Boost system.
Drive is by an AMG SPEEDSHIFT TCT 9G automatic with nine performance-geared ratios and a torque converter to all four wheels.
An AMG active exhaust system featuring a pair of twin outlets can provide a muted output during daily driving. It can be enhanced at a press of a button to generate more characterful responses.
A high-performance braking system has 400 x 36mm internally ventilated and perforated discs on the front axle, and 345 x 25mm discs at the rear.
Visually, it’s obviously a member of the Mercedes-AMG range with a radiator grille featuring 15 vertical struts, along with aerodynamic enhancement of the lower grille section.
Driving dynamics are by AMG RIDE CONTROL+ air suspension. This incorporates adaptive damping and can be preselected in three on-road modes – ‘Comfort’, ‘Sport’ and ‘Sport+’ that can adapt the driving status up to 1000 times per second.
Two new damping levels – ‘Trail’ and ‘Sand’ – are designated for off-road use.
Inside there’s an AMG Performance steering wheel in supple Nappa leather, a Burmester surround sound system, panoramic sunroof, door sills with illuminated AMG lettering, memory settings for front seats, mirrors and steering wheel, and wireless charging for compatible mobile devices.
Owners have access to Mercedes me connect, an app-based system that makes a suite of operations and notifications controllable from a connected phone or device. These include remote engine start and door locking, geofencing, retrieval of vehicle status and location, speed alert, predictive navigation, theft notification and maintenance management.
The Mercedes-AMG GLE 53 4MATIC+ SUV retails for $166,700 (MRLP) and is available now.