Kitzbühel 2007: The Mercedes-Benz SUV Family
Stuttgart/Kitzbühel
Jun 12, 2007
Superior in any situation: GL-Class – First-class on and off-road
With the GL-Class, Mercedes-Benz occupies the peak position in the market segment for luxurious Sports Utility Vehicles. This premium off-roader excels with excellent driving dynamics both on and off the road, and spoils its occupants with outstanding spaciousness together with the comfort of a luxury-class saloon. The GL-Class also sets a further milestone with the comprehensive safety concept PRE-SAFE ® , which has been realised in this segment for the first time.
Accordingly the GL-Class meets all the requirements for a modern, innovative SUV or redefines them on a higher level. Naturally typical Mercedes off-roader attributes such as outstanding solidity, robustness and durability are retained.
It is not by chance that the model designation is a reference to the legendary progenitor of all Mercedes-Benz off-roaders, namely the G-Class. With its confident and imposing external appearance, the GL-Class visually substantiates its claim to leadership in this hotly contested market segment. Its striking design idiom exudes power and exclusivity, with calm body surfaces, powerful, wedge-shaped features and striking details giving this high-end off-roader an impression of forward-flowing energy even when at standstill. The proportions of the spacious body (length 5088 mm, width 1920 mm, height 1840 mm) round off the attributes of this multi-talented vehicle.
The range of engines comprises four ultra-modern units whose harmonious torque and power characteristics decisively contribute to driving pleasure. The V8 diesel engine of the GL 420 CDI 4MATIC develops 225 kW/306 hp and 700 newton metres of torque for superior drive characteristics, while the well-proven V6 unit of the GL 320 CDI 4MATIC guarantees effortless progress with 165 kW/224 hp and 510 newton metres. Both common-rail diesels are equipped with a maintenance-free particulate filter as standard. A second eight-cylinder model is available in addition to the 285 kW/388 hp, 5.5-litre V8-engine in the GL 500 4MATIC – the GL 450 4MATIC with a peak output of 250 kW/340 hp.
Top-class performance and handling both on and off the road 4MATIC – the permanent four-wheel drive system by Mercedes-Benz – ensures that the GL-Class has superior driving dynamics in any conditions. In combination with the standard AIRMATIC air suspension, precise speed-sensitive power steering and the likewise standard Adaptive Damping System ADS, the majestic GL (wheelbase 3075mm) delights its occupants with impressive handling.
And while the GL already cuts a very good figure on the roads, it is a genuine off-roader which also excels as a cross-country vehicle. In its highest off-road mode, the modified AIRMATIC system provides a ground clearance of 307 millimetres, with a fording depth of 600 millimetres. And in the event that even this ground clearance proves insufficient, a steel underbody guard protects critical chassis and drive components. The standard Offroad-Pro engineering package considerably enhances the GL’s capabilities on difficult terrain. Thanks to a low-range ratio (2.93 : 1) in the transfer case and disc-type locks with up to 100-percent effectiveness on the reinforced rear axle and centre differential, there is hardly any stretch of terrain that cannot be overcome. All these traction-improving measures are augmented by the electronic traction control system 4ETS. On difficult terrain, other electronic control systems such as Offroad-ABS, Downhill Speed Regulation (DSR) and start-off assist come to the driver’s aid.
 
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