The 2021 Mercedes-AMG GLS 63 is one of aloof a scattering of high-end, three-row achievement crossovers on auction today. It gets the company’s better V8, the latest and greatest in-car tech, and swathes of leather, wood, and added high-end treatments inside, archetypal of what you apprehend of a high-end Mercedes-Benz crossover. But this three-row is focused on achievement aloft all else.
And the Mercedes-AMG GLS 63 does aggregate as advertised and more. It’s ridiculously quick, chiefly upscale, and alike appealing adequate in the appropriate setting. But that’s not to say the GLS 63 doesn’t accept a few accessory drawbacks. Best notably, the GLS 63 sacrifices a bit around-town livability with such hardcore achievement options, additional it costs an absonant sum, abnormally with options.
Powering the Mercedes-AMG GLS 63 is the aforementioned twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V8 you get on about every added AMG 63 model, alone actuality it pairs to a 48-volt mild-hybrid arrangement accepted as EQ Boost. This bureaucracy produces 603 application and 627 pound-feet, which propels the GLS 63 to 60 afar per hour in a antic 4.1 seconds. That’s appropriate – by the time you accomplishment account this sentence, the 5,927-pound Mercedes has already accomplished 60.
And the Mercedes-AMG GLS 63 feels absolutely fast, not aloof fast for a three-row SUV. Twist the chic council wheel-mounted drive approach selector to Action Plus, brew the gas pedal, and the GLS 63 accelerates with a ton of force. There’s a buzz of turbo lag, but it’s bound quashed by the 48-volt mild-hybrid abetment system, which sends an added 21 electric horses and 184 lb-ft to the onboard compressor address of a super-smart ECU.
And already you get college in the rev range, that V8 shows how able it is by architecture ability continuously all the way up through redline. Find a continued abundant amplitude of alley with no acceleration banned and you could apparently top this affair out at 174 afar per hour. Imagine that: 174 mph in a three-row SUV.
The central of the Mercedes-AMG GLS 63 is an acutely nice abode to be. It ups the affluence ante over the abject GLS with added accepted appearance like Nappa covering (versus affected leather) and added trim options on the dash, including a few from the Mercedes Designo specialty department. The seats in our tester abrasion handsome Tarufo brown-and-black covering combo, while the birr gets $1,750 in carbon cilia and the action council caster has a $600 Dinamica finish.
Joining those flush treatments are two 12.3-inch screens: a touchscreen asleep centermost and a agenda apparatus array aloof abaft the council wheel, both housed aural the aforementioned bezel. As with best Mercedes models, the GLS 63 runs the latest MBUX software with avant-garde appearance like “Hey, Mercedes” articulation control, aggrandized absoluteness navigation, and assorted ambient lighting and beating functions.
Yes, alike with alternative 23-inch auto – the better you can get alfresco of the Maybach archetypal – and humble tires, the GLS 63 is still appealing adequate on the road. Much acclaim goes to the adaptive air abeyance in Comfort mode, which absorbs assault from alike the best burst pavement and almost shrugs at advancing acceleration bumps. Additionally acknowledge the alive anti-roll bars, who advice bland out undulations. Things get a little harsher in Action and Action Additional modes, but alike again the ride isn’t as backbreaking as some alternatives. Additionally allowance added bolster our backsides are those big, adequate advanced buckets seats captivated in Nappa covering – they’re acutely admiring and action both heating and cooling functionality.
The Mercedes-Benz GLS 63 is a actual chic crossover, and as mentioned, in Comfort approach its adaptive abeyance smooths out alike the crudest pavement. But Comfort approach additionally dulls the burke acknowledgment and council ascribe too drastically. In this drive approach it takes a additional for the GLS 63 to acknowledge back you put your bottom on the gas, and the council feels lackluster.
We spent best of our time active the GLS 63 in Action mode, alike about town. While that does accomplish the abeyance acutely stiffer than what you get in Comfort mode, it improves council feel and burke acknowledgment significantly. But if you absolutely appetite to clothier your active acquaintance in the GLS 63, Individual approach allows you to configure some of these settings alone based on active preference.
Alongside the GLS 63, the baby account of big affluence achievement crossovers includes the BMW Alpina XB7, the Tesla Archetypal X Performance, the Ambit Rover SVAutobiography Dynamic, and that’s about it. At $132,100 to start, the GLS is competitively priced accustomed that the Tesla starts at $99,990 and the best big-ticket option, the Alpina XB7, costs $141,300 to start. But the amount tag on our tester is a alarming $153,035 column options.
The account of options on our GLS 63 tester includes $4,950 matte atramentous 23-inch wheels, a $4,550 Burmester beleaguer complete system, a $1,500 carbon cilia agent cover, a $600 Dinamica council wheel, and a few others. Some of those options should appear accepted on a car that already costs six abstracts to start.
Even with EQ Boost amalgam assist, the Mercedes-AMG GLS 63 doesn’t get abundant ammunition economy. The twin-turbocharged V8 achieves 14 afar per gallon city, 18 highway, and 16 combined. That’s acutely beneath than the accepted GLS, which gets up to 21 mpg combined, worse than what’s offered on the Alpina XB7 (17 combined), and matches the Land Rover SVAutobiography (16 combined). But of course, the electric Tesla Archetypal X Achievement beats them all with 305 afar of range.
BMW Alpina XB7Dodge Durango SRT HellcatLand Rover SVAutobiography DynamicTesla Archetypal X Performance