Mercedes unveils second-gen GL in New York
The full-size SUV receives a host of new safety and handling features.
Mercedes-Benz has unveiled its second-generation GL full-sized SUV with a sportier exterior, slightly larger dimensions and a host of new safety and handling features. The debut was held at the New York Auto Show.
The 2013 seven-seat, all-wheel-drive GL has new standard systems that help prevent collisions and stabilize the vehicle, a new self-leveling air suspension and electromechanical steering.
It goes on sale in September. Pricing has not been disclosed.
The redesigned GL is about an inch longer than its predecessor, with an overall length of 201.6 inches, and a half-inch wider at 84.3 inches, allowing for more shoulder, elbow and headroom in all three rows of seats.
Mercedes has added an option called "power easy-entry" for easier access to the second row of seats.
Mercedes builds the GL in Vance, Ala.
The GL has new or reworked engines with more horsepower and torque. The base GL350 BlueTEC diesel has a re-engineered 3.0-liter V6 that generates 240 hp, 30 more than the current model, and 455 lb-ft of torque, an increase of 55 lb-ft.
Two bi-turbo V8 models will be sold with a 4.6-liter engine. The GL450's engine generates 362 hp and 406 lb-ft of torque, an increase of 27 hp and 67 lb-ft. The range topper GL550's engine generates 429 hp and 516 lb-ft of torque, up 47 hp and 125 lb-ft from the 2012 model with a 5.5-liter V8.</p><p>All three engines are combined with a new seven-speed automatic transmission.
The new radar-based Collision Prevention Assist works at speeds between 20 and 155 mph and determines when the distance between the GL and the vehicle in front of it decreases.
The system also recognizes stationary objects. If the system determines a front crash is likely, the driver gets visual and acoustic warnings and the brake assist system is prepared and activated when the driver presses the brake pedal. The system calculates how much braking force is needed to avoid an accident.
According to Mercedes-Benz, the anti-collision system also adapts to bumper-to-bumper traffic.
Another innovation and highlight in the 2013 GL is the standard crosswind stabilization system that sends "targeted" brake impulses when there are high winds.
Mercedes-Benz introduced the GL in 2006 and sales peaked at 26,396 vehicles in 2007.
The 2012 GL starts at $62,445 for the diesel version and increases to $86,175 for the GL550. Prices include shipping.