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Mercedes GLS 2019 in the driving report

Mercedes GLS 2019 in the driving report
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D he US state of Utah offers plenty of space and lots of off-road routes to try out a car like the new Mercedes GLS. Some of them meander through the Wasatch National Forest, east of Salt Lake City and with around 350 square kilometers about the size of the Gaza Strip or the island of La Gomera. Only much less populated.

The path is so steep and narrow that otherwise only enduro riders or ATW riders meander up here. Now a Mercedes GLS is balancing itself. With a width of two meters (without mirrors) and a height of 1.83 meters, it corresponds almost exactly to the clearance profile of the forest path, so exact chauffeur is the order of the day. Hopefully nobody will come from above now.

High traction and comfortable

The 2.5-tonne Mercedes has no problems with the steep climb. The test car is a 580 4Matic, it pushes with 700 Nm and 489 PS, every now and then a few stones under the mighty 21-inch off-road tires splash aside. The up to 22 HP and 250 Nm of the starter generator help him. Traction problems? Not here.

The Mercedes man in the passenger seat asks how the comfort would be received. The driver had to admit that he didn't pay any attention to it because he was steering and looking. Also because little is noticeable. The way the Mercedes GLS glides along the undulating path with its Airmatic chassis including E-Active Body Control has something very majestic about it.

Even coarser boulders can significantly slow down the forward thrust of the big car - he just struts over it away. When it gets really harder and steeper, the optionally available terrain reduction (off-road package, 2,261 euros) helps.

Big car, sensitive steering

But Utah is not all off-road either - routes, this side of the Wasatch National Forest the GLS 580 drives no less convincingly. The suspension comfort is just as great, at least when the large technology package (10,710 euros) is on board. In addition to the E-Active Body Control, it also includes the Airmatic package including a larger brake.

Even when the asphalt strip of Highway 65 over the Big Mountain Pass becomes narrower and more winding, the occupants of the GLS feel comfortable. Yes, it's a big car, and yes, it's a narrow road. With the sensitive steering, the Mercedes can be steered exactly around the bends through which the first Mormon settlers traveled to the west.

The electronic chassis minimizes the side tilt, the brakes show even when driving a little more forcefullyno signs of fatigue. A few locals dawdle down the pass road towards Salt Lake City, they willingly let the big Benz pass. The test driver has long since made himself comfortable in the rear. The legroom is reminiscent of a luxury limousine, the headroom more of a covered wagon: the cowboy hat can stay on here.

High-quality, functional interior

What else is there to report? Some said that the Mercedes GLS lacked the glamor that other SUVs in this size and price range had. It may be that the interior of the GLS is strongly reminiscent of the E- and GLE-Class. But there is nothing wrong with that. The interior is of high quality, the furnishings look solid and functional, it grounds the big car with its Swabian sobriety. Although the GLS is known to be built in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

The price, oh yes, the price: The GLS is available in this country from 85,924 euros as 350d or 90,386 euros as 400d. The diesel drives no less majestically than the 489 hp eight-cylinder, the price of which has not yet been determined for Germany.


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