Of course, it wouldn’t be a proper SUV without some form of off-roading capability, and thankfully Mercedes has included several tricks up the GLS’ sleeve to make it competent. All models receive the ‘4-Matic’ all-wheel drive system mated with a 9-speed automatic gearbox. The multi-plate clutch allows full flexibility of torque distribution between the axles, from 0 to 100 percent.
In the UK, only one drivetrain is offered at the moment: the 400d. It comes with a 2.9-litre inline six with 325bhp and 516lb/ft torque. It will officially return 37.2MPG and emit 201g/km of CO2. Three trim levels are available: the AMG-Line Premium, the AMG-Line Premium Plus, and the AMG-Line Premium Plus Executive. What a mouthful!
For those wanting more power, the semi-skimmed GLS 53 (using a mild-hybrid engine) and full fat GLS 63 (with a twin-turbocharged 4.0 litre petrol V8) AMG performance models are expected to arrive later on in the year.