When you think of large luxury SUVs there are a few kings that come to mind. You mainly think of the Cadillac Escalade, Audi Q7, Lexus GX and the legendary Mercedes-Benz GL…S. Previously known as the Mercedes-Benz GL, the 2017 model year of the giant Benz is now known as GLS.
So what does the ’S’ really mean? Mostly likely you’re thinking that it means ‘Sporty.’ However, the ’S’ in ‘GLS’ really means S-Class. Mercedes-Benz calls the GLS the S-Class of SUVs and you can’t really argue that once you take a seat inside the extremely luxurious model that is wrapped in leather, wood, and other crazy options like an air ionization system. Compared to its predecessor, the new 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLS gets an improved nine-speed automatic transmission with additional DYNAMIC SELECT modes, an improved air suspension system for better ride comfort, an upgraded range of driver assist technologies and new tech that includes internet access and remote start. Let’s take a closer look at the 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLS.
It is a giant beast. The 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLS sits on a wheelbase that measures 121.1 inches with an overall length of 202 inches. The width comes in at 78 inches and the height comes in at a tall 72.8 inches.
Our test model, the 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLS550 gets an even sportier appearance with exclusive front and rear bumpers, chrome details, side flaps, running boards, 21-inch AMG wheels, and much more.
Compared to its competitors like the Cadillac Escalade and the Lexus GX, the Mercedes-Benz GLS goes for a more elegant and less aggressive look. It stands tall with class and heritage rather than going the route of creating cutting edge design and we love every bit of it.
The classy exterior theme carries on inside with an extremely luxurious interior that is made of very high-quality materials. Everything you touch and feel is wrapped in leather, suede, and wood. All the buttons and switches have a sharp and elegant touch to them.
With seating for seven passengers in the lap of luxury, the 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLS offers 40.3 inches of legroom for front row passengers, 38.5 inches of legroom for rear seat passengers, and 35 inches of legroom for third-row passengers. As you can see, third-row passengers don’t need to keep their legs close to their body and can spread out and sit comfortably. Cargo room comes in at a whopping 84.1 cubic feet with the second and third row folded.
Tech-wise, the 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLS offers a long list of standard and optional features. Our test model, the Mercedes-Benz GLS550, came with all the bells and whistles including power front row seats with memory settings, heated and ventilated seats with an amazing massage system, heated second row seats, heated steering wheel, power lift gate, heated and cooled cup holders, keyless go, tri-zone climate control, soft close doors, the Mercedes-Benz COMAND system with a touchpad control and a 8-inch color display, Harman/Kardon LOGIC7 sound system or a Bang and Olufsen sound system, USB/AUX ports, Sirius XM radio, voice control, Bluetooth audio and phone connectivity, Apple CarPlay connectivity, DVD and CD player, rear-seat entertainment package, WiFi connectivity, and much more. Of course, that is a giant list to go through and it will get even larger once we get to the safety part of this review.
Power for the 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLS550 comes from a 4.7 V8 twin turbo engine making 449 horsepower with a maximum torque of 516 lb-ft of torque. Now, even though this giant luxury SUV weighs in at an outstanding 5,578 pounds, it can go from 0 to 60 mph in just 5.2 seconds.
With the new and updated DYNAMIC SELECT system, drivers can pick between six transmission modes in addition to other mode setting including Comfort, Slippery, and Sport mode. The new AIRMATIC air suspension system makes for an extremely comfortable ride and also offers for a ground clearance of up to 12.5 inches if you plan on going off-road. If you plan on towing something, the 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLS550 can tow up to 7,500 pounds.
Fuel economy wise, the 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLS550 offers an EPA-rated fuel economy of 14/18 mpg* (city/highway).
The 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLS550 comes with a long list of standard safety features including active brake assist, crosswind assist, brake assist, rear-view camera, ATTENTION ASSIST, and PRE-SAFE. You can opt for other driver assist safety features including active brake assist with cross-traffic alert, adaptive cruise control with autopilot steering, blind spot warning, lane keep assist, collision monitoring, ACTIVE CURVE SYSTEM, and much more.
The 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLS is simply outstanding in every way. Sitting here and reading a review won’t do it justice, so make sure you get into an AutoNation-affiliated Mercedes-Benz dealership to test drive one today. Prices start at $68,700** for the Mercedes-Benz GLS450 and $93,850** for the GLS550.
*Fuel economy values (mpg) are EPA estimates. Actual mileage will vary and depends on several factors including driving habits and vehicle condition.
**Vehicle MSRP excludes taxes, title, transportation, options, and dealer fees.