Most people buy a crossover for their larger passenger and cargo space compared to a sedan or wagon, but the 2018 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class Coupes prioritize style over utility. Based on the standard GLE-Class, the GLE Coupe sloping roofline takes up both rear headroom and vertical storage space in the back. So if the utility aspect of this SUV is compromised, where does it actually shine?
It’s clear that the 2018 GLE-Class Coupe is more interested in “performance”. Most Mercedes-Benz models offer a variety of engines ranging from fuel-efficient to tire-shredding. The GLE-Class Coupe goes skip these boring things and only comes in two versions: outlandish and ridiculous. The base engine is a twin-turbo V6 that produces 385 horsepower, while the AMG 63 S twin-turbo V8 boasts 577 hp.
Even though the GLE Coupe really hit in a straight line, Mercedes engineers couldn’t do much to improve its handling capabilities. Even compared to some similarly designed crossovers, the GLE Coupe isn’t much fun to drive. The end result is a vehicle that is not too sporty or practical.
For 2018, the AMG GLE 43 gain more power, increasing engine output from 362 hp to 385 hp. A new AMG Performance Studio package for the GLE 43, adding orange-rimmed wheels, black exterior elements and other appearance upgrades. Otherwise, the Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class Coupe is unchanged.
Trim levels and features
The 2018 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class Coupe is a five-passenger midsize luxury SUV available in two trim levels: AMG GLE 43 and AMG GLE 63 S.
Standard equipment for the AMG GLE 43 includes 21-inch wheels, an adaptive air suspension, a power liftgate, a panoramic sunroof, auto-dimming and power-folding mirrors, dual-zone automatic climate control, a power-adjustable steering wheel, driver-seat memory settings, heated front seats, premium vinyl upholstery, the COMAND infotainment interface, an 8-inch central display, a navigation system, a 115-volt household-style power outlet, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and a 13-speaker Harman Kardon sound system. Safety feature includes a forward collision warning system with automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning and intervention, blind-spot monitoring.
Two optional packages are available for the GLE 43. The Premium 2 package adds illuminated doorsills, interior ambient lighting, heated and cooled front cupholders and a center pass-through for the rear seat. The Premium 3 pack adds adaptive cruise control, a 360-degree parking camera, a collision avoidance system, front and rear parking sensors, lane departure mitigation, an automated parallel parking system and an automated steering system.
The 2018 Mercedes-AMG GLE 63 S adds summer performance tires, 22-inch wheels, bigger brakes, active stabilizer bars, a carbon fiber engine cover, automatic high-beam control, adaptive LED headlights, a 360-degree parking camera, noise-reducing front-row windows, upgraded leather upholstery, front passenger memory settings, a sport steering wheel, heated and ventilated front sport seats and the Premium 2 package contents. It also includes the Premium 3 package 360-degree parking camera and parking system.
Both models can be equipped with the Night package, which adds gloss-black lower valances and window surrounds. The AMG GLE 43 Performance Studio package adds an orange lip on the front bumper, an orange stripe on the wheels, faux-suede seat inserts and the Night package content.
Stand-alone options include a trailer hitch, multicontour massaging front seats, tri-zone climate control, heated rear seats, a rear entertainment system, a premium 14-speaker Bang & Olufsen sound system and a performance exhaust system.
The 2018 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class Coupe is offered with two different powertrains. All-wheel drive system (4Matic) is standard and all engines also feature with an automatic stop-start technology, which shut off the engine in order to save fuel.
The 2018 Mercedes-AMG GLE 43 4Matic is powered by a turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 engine that generates 385 horsepower and 384 lb-ft of torque. A nine-speed automatic transmission with manual shifting mode is standard. In performance testing, the AMG GLE 43 4Matic accelerates from zero to 60 mph in 5.3 seconds. The EPA estimates it will earn 19 mpg combined (17 city/22 highway).
Under its hood, the 2018 AMG GLE 63 S is powered by a tuned version of the turbocharged V8 and produces 577 hp and 561 lb-ft. Its get a specially AMG-tuned seven-speed automatic transmission. In track testing, the AMG GLE 63 S sprinted to 60 mph in an extremely rapid 4.0 seconds. EPA fuel economy is rated at 15 mpg combined (14 city/18 highway).
Properly equipped, the 2018 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class Coupe can tow up to 7,200 pounds.
As you would expect, the 2018 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class Coupe comes with richly appointed and luxurious cabin, but soon you will find that there isn’t much space in the back. Even if your head doesn’t touch the roof, it is likely that you will feel a little cramped compared to other midsize SUVs. Because of the sloping roofline, there are only 23 cubic feet of cargo space behind the rear seat. Folding the rear seat only produces 60.7 cubic feet of space, a below average number even for a compact crossover SUV.
Apart from the lack of utilities, the 2018 GLE Coupe cabin is quite attractive. Material quality and workmanship are excellent. Models equipped with the available grades of genuine leather, especially the optional Designo diamond-quilted leather upholstery and genuine wood trim, making the interior look very luxurious. The available multi-contour front seats are highly adjustable and add some massage features to a very comfortable seat.
Release Date and Price
Official pricing for the AMG GLE 43 start at $71,495. The AMG GLE 63 S is priced at $112,855.