WHEN: April 15, 2014
HOW MUCH: Rs 1.5 Crore
ENGINE: 5.5-liter V8 biturbo engine that produces 565PS and 760Nm
German luxury carmaker Mercedes-Benz is all set to launch the new high performance GL 63 AMG SUV in Mumbai on April 15, 2014.
The Mercedes-Benz GL AMG is powered by 5.5-litre V8 biturbo engine that produces 565PS of maximum power between 5250-5750 rpm and 760Nm of peak torque between 2000-5000 rpm. The Mercedes-Benz GL 63 AMG manages the 0 to 100 kmph sprint in 4.9 seconds and boasts of an electronically limited top speed of 250 kmph. NEDC fuel consumption comes in at 12.3 litre per 100 kilometres (288 g CO2/km).
Power is transmitted to all four permanently driven wheels by the AMG SPEEDSHIFT PLUS 7G-TRONIC. Featuring three modes and an automatic double-declutching function for downshifting, this seven-speed automatic transmission offers a lot of variability. In ‘Controlled Efficiency’ (C) mode the ECO start/stop function is active, shutting down the 8-cylinder engine as soon as the vehicle comes to a standstill. ‘C’ also stands for a gentle accelerator and transmission characteristic with early gear changes; start-up generally takes place in second gear here. A green ‘ECO’ symbol in the AMG instrument cluster indicates to the driver that the ECO start/stop function is active.
In the Sport (S) and Manual (M) driving modes the ECO start/stop function is inactive and the engine-transmission combination displays far greater agility with more spontaneous responses. A brief and exactly defined retardation of ignition and injection during upshifting at full load additionally provides for shorter shift times.
Peak inside the passenger cabin of the Mercedes-Benz GL 63 AMG and one would notice great attention to detail, excellent ergonomics and a generous amount of space. All seven seats in the GL 63 AMG are covered in high-quality leather, as is the centre armrest. Electrically adjustable AMG sports seats feature double topstitching in a contrasting colour and AMG badges on the front seat backrests and outer rear seat backrests.
The dashboard, armrests and door panelling come in Artico man-made leather with double topstitching. As part of the optional ‘designo exclusive’ package, these components can be covered in high-quality designo leather. The Mercedes-Benz GL 63 AMG also features flattened bottom AMG performance 4-spoke steering wheel with perforated leather in the grip area, and aluminium shift paddles.
Other standard equipment of the GL 63 AMG includes AMG door sill panels in stainless steel, AMG floor mats, AMG sports pedals in brushed stainless steel with rubber studs, active parking assist, Attention Assist, bi-xenon headlamps, audio 20 CD radio with Bluetooth and USB interface, collision prevention assist, electric glass tilt/sliding sunroof, keyless-go, and 3-zone automatic climate control among many other creature comforts.
We expect the Mercedes-Benz GL 63 AMG to be priced around Rs 1.5 crore.
Mercedes India to begin assembling the new GL in 2013
WHEN: First quarter 2013
HOW MUCH: Rs 65 lakh
ENGINE: 3.0-litre V6 diesel,
The new Mercedes GL-Class was unveiled at the New York Motor Show this April. Based on the same architecture as the new M-Class, which was revealed at the New Delhi Auto Expo in January, the new GL is set to go into production at Mercedes’ Chakan facility early next year.
The new GL is the second-generation model, following on from the fairly successful first-generation, which generated good response from markets around the world. Mercedes has cottoned on to the fact that demand for big, seven-seat SUVs will only grow, especially as markets like India, China an Russia continue to lap up the bigger-is-better mentality.
The new Mercedes GL-Class does not look like a generational leap forward in styling, and it isn’t. Utilising the same family look which buyers around the world have become accustomed to, Mercedes have chosen to tweak it slightly without going in for any radical re-surfacing. This is intentional, because the Mercedes buyer tends to be slightly more conservative. The new GL has grown in every dimension, and now measures a mammoth 5.1 metres from stem to stern. It is a bit longer, taller and wider than the outgoing model, although it retains the same 3075 mm wheelbase.
Mercedes has resorted to using aluminium for the body panels and has replaced the hydraulic steering system with electrical assist to reduce weight. The new GL as a result is more than 100 kilos lighter than its predecessor.
Quilted leather seats contribute to the plush and mature ambience.
Changes over the previous model are more evident in the interior. Leather and wood trims still dominate the interior, but the elements have a more modern, angular look, replacing the rounded oval and circular theme seen previously. Quilted leather upholstery on the seats and door pads complete the grown-up look. Mercedes insists that the new GL will offer the same degree of comfort and plushness as the S-Class.
Mercedes’ 4MATIC all-wheel drive system is offered as standard on the GL, along with the excellent 7G-Tronic transmission. Two engines are on offer, which include the familiar 3.0-litre V6 diesel and a 4.6-litre petrol V8. India is likely to have the one engine option only, the diesel.
A full suite of electronic safety aids comes as standard, ensuring the new GL is pretty capable on the rough stuff. However, it is important to note that the GL will never display the same kind of prowess off the road that the G-Wagen has, for example. The decrease in weight, coupled to more efficient engines has reduced the fuel consumption by as much as 20 %, according to Mercedes.
Mammoth size evident from this picture.
The significant point of note here is that the GL will be assembled from SKD (semi-knocked-down) kits at Mercedes India’s Chakan facility. It will be the third new model Mercedes will add to the assembly line over the next 12 months, beginning with the B-Class and the ML. Indian assembly guarantees that the taxes and duties on the new GL will be significantly less than on the current car, which is fully-imported. This will give Mercedes a price advantage, which will help it to meet the competition head on. Expect ex-showroom prices to start between Rs 60 – 65 lakh, which makes the new GL excellent value in the segment. This is a very important consideration for Mercedes, as it fights to retain its number two slot in the Indian market in terms of sales.
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