GALLERY: Mercedes-Benz GL 350 is more than a luxury vehicle
THERE is a certain sense of satisfaction when you're pleasantly proven wrong.
I emphasise the word "pleasantly" quite strongly in this review as I am not one who likes to be proven wrong.
But in the case of the Mercedes GL 350, this luxurious, top end SUV has given me a lot to think about in the way I've categorised this type of vehicle.
Living up to the highest standards is one thing - surpassing them for perfection is what Mercedes-Benz is known for.
The exterior of the GL-Class captivates with its breathtaking presence: the beholder's glance is drawn, as if magnetically, to the dynamic lines of the design.
The eyes sweep appreciatively from the radiator grille, brimming with character and featuring the striking bi-xenon headlamps, over the athletic flanks to the powerful tail end.
Point one of being proven pleasantly wrong came from the engine. For the entirety of the trip, I thought I was behind the wheel of a fuel-guzzling petrol engine.
The GL350 features a V6 diesel engine - and a very quiet one at that.
Throughout the cabin, you have time to collect your thoughts, and almost hear your eyelashes clap together as you blink in astonishment.
Thanks to third-generation common-rail technology, the uprated and consumption-optimised V6 diesel engine in the GL 350 BlueTEC 4MATIC is able to develop 190kW of power and a peak torque of 620Nm.
Together these translate into superior pulling power in all handling situations, in conjunction with lower environmental impact and reduced fuel consumption.
The ECO start/stop function, which is fitted as standard, ensures that the engine is automatically switched off as soon as the vehicle comes to a standstill, for example at traffic lights or in a traffic jam, so playing an important part in reducing consumption.
The ECO display shows the driver a consumption diagram of his journey in the speedometer field of the instrument cluster so they can check how efficiently they are driving and make adjustments where required.
Proven point number two comes with the level of comfort and driver enjoyment from being behind the wheel of what I would have only called a luxury "soccer mum car" until now.
Motoring pleasure increases exponentially when nothing is left to be desired.
Standard-specification luxury, coupled with
numerous individualised equipment options, sets new benchmarks in comfort and sophistication.
The extremely convenient access, the pleasantly high seat position and the thermotronic automatic climate control ensure comfort and wellbeing from start to finish.
Mercedes GL 350 is fitted out with a stack of technological features including an audio 20-CD system, combining key functions of a fully fledged entertainment system such as radio, CD player, MP3 player as well as USB and Bluetooth interfaces.
Satellite Navigation also comes as standard and there are a range of Becker Map Pilot, Command online with Live Traffic Information and Rear Seat Entertainment systems available on request.
Safety is prominent throughout this vehicle with a wealth of active and passive safety functions.
Mercedes-Benz have even been intuitive and innovative enough to install a parking package with 360 camera.
Once seated behind the wheel, the seatbelt fastens you in a little tighter with a light pull of the belt across your torso to make sure you're ready for the ride ahead.
Other safety features include safe driving attention assist which warns the driver as soon as it detects signs of inattention or fatigue, active lane keeping assist, active blind spot assist and night view assist plus with pedestrian detection, just to name a few.
To test drive the Mercedes-Benz GL 350, visit DC Motors today.
Mercedes-Benz Roadshow a Success
MOTORING enthusiasts with spoiled for choice at a Mercedes-Benz Roadshow held at DC Motors earlier this month.
Mercedes-Benz sales Paul Anderson said the two week-long roadshow was a great success with many loyal customers dropping in to view the range as well as new motoring enthusiasts enquiring about the brand.
The spread included SL400 Roadster, E250 convertible, GL350 4x4, CLS 500, CLA 45, GLA 250 and S500.
"The roadshow visits the dealership annually and is always pulls a crowd," Paul said.
"We are noticing an increase in the number of Mercedes-Benz sales locally each year, which is great to see.
"We are looking forward to the release of a new vehicle in December this year - the GLC, which will feature a 9 speed transmission and be around the size of a Forester."