Take one AMG V8, put it in an SUV. Take another one, put it in the SUV...
Mercedes-AMG has unveiled its latest SUV, putting a 603bhp iteration of AMG's twin-turbo V8 with little mild-hybrid support into its latest and biggest SUV coupe, the GLE Coupe.
Externally identical to its more conventionally shaped GLE63 S sibling, the new coupe was designed to grab attention as a more stylized performance option to compete with the new BMW X6 M Competition and Audi RSQ8.
We've said it before and we'll say it again: this form of high-slung, unnecessarily heavy SUV, equipped with a powerful, voracious, performance-oriented engine and transmission, isn't really our cup of tea, but for those who actually desire it, AMG thinks he has a lot to offer.
The engine, which is admittedly inferior to the 616-hp X6 M Competition, is the same hot-engined 603-hp M196 V8 found in the E63 S, now assisted by a new mild hybrid system. Slightly less powerful GLE63 coupe without S with 564 hp. 2500 and 4500 rpm, which, together with a huge amount of power, will allow the GLE to accelerate to 100 km / h in just 3,8 seconds, which is 0,1 seconds slower than the X6 M and on par with the RSQ8.
The 48V mild hybrid system powers the integrated starter and alternator, which itself produces 22bhp. This system is new to the GLE63 S (both coupe and station wagon) and is likely to be used in other future 63 AMGs. The power drives the AMG-tuned 4Matic all-wheel drive system through a quick-shifting nine-speed automatic transmission.
As with all powerful SUVs of this size and complexity, the enemy is weight, which Mercedes is slow to mention. And since the standard GLE is already well over two tons when equipped with the simpler six-cylinder powertrains, we suspect the GLE63 S weighs around 2,3 tons, about the same as the X6 M and RSQ8, by the way.
To help control mass, the 48-volt electrical system also feeds an active anti-roll bar system which, like in Audi and Porsche, compensates for lateral body movements by actuating movable anti-roll bars on both the front and rear axles. Air suspension with adjustable dampers, an active rear differential lock and a special AMG-tuned variable ratio steering complete the dynamic upgrade.
The GLE63 S Coupe aesthetically matches modern Mercedes styling language, pairing the standard GLE Coupe's sleek sloping roofline with aggressive lower vents, 22-inch wheels and AMG's signature quad rear exhaust pipes. The interior is also filled with AMG-specific details, including carbon fiber trim, sculpted sports seats, AMG chunky steering wheel and full AMG digital interface on the MBUX dual-screen smart infotainment display.
Specific UK pricing has yet to be announced, but production will begin later this year alongside the GLE63 S wagon and GLS63 S, creating an impressive lineup of four SUV models with over 600hp, including the G63.