Mercedes-Benz’s GLE will soon be redesigned, and we have spy shots of prototypes for the new generation of the popular mid-size luxury SUV.
The current GLE was introduced for the 2016 model year but is really just an update of the M-Class launched in 2012.
We’re expecting the redesigned model on sale in 2018. It should arrive as a 2019 model.
We know this is a GLE because of its size and proportions but also because one of the testers has a “W167” inscription on its rear. The current GLE is referred to internally as a W166.
The vehicle is still heavily disguised but we can make out a number of new details such as the massive grille and more angular headlight shape. The designers have also adopted a more rugged look for the body, with wide wheel arches leading into a narrow cabin. It’s a shape that more closely resembles the strong lines of the iconic G-Class.
A photo of the cabin reveals a layout similar to what we see in the E-Class. The dashboard features the now familiar dual-screen design and in the center console should be smartphone-like screen serving as the main controller for the COMAND infotainment system.
The redesigned GLE will be the second model to ride on Mercedes’ MHA platform for SUVs sized from the GLC up (excluding the G-Class). The platform is closely related to Mercedes’ MRA platform found in most of the automaker’s sedans and coupes and made its debut in the GLC.
Powertrains should include Mercedes’ next-generation inline-4 and -6 engines plus a twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V-8 reserved for the Mercedes-AMG GLE63 variant. Diesel and plug-in hybrid options should also be on offer, though the former may not make it to the United States due to the fallout from Volkswagen’s diesel emissions scandal. A 9-speed automatic and all-wheel drive should be standard on most models in the range.
Should the current SUV craze continue, a new generation of the GLE Coupe should follow shortly after the redesigned GLE. Stay tuned for updates as development continues.