I recently got to stop by a Silver Star Motors car show in Kingston to look at the latest Mercedes-Benz and Mercedes-AMG cars, and gave the GLA 180 and the GLE 43 AMG a test drive.
The GLE 43 AMG in this case was the Coupé, which is a sportier-looking alternative to a conventional SUV. It had a reasonable amount of cabin room, but a compact, sporty, rounded look on the outside that made you feel like you’re getting in for a fun drive rather than a trip to work.
Coupes are generally a sportier alternative to sedans, but in recent years have made their way to SUV lines (which is expected, as SUVs have grown in popularity), except with larger bodies than their small counterparts and sometimes four doors instead of two.
The GLE 43 AMG coupe is a bridge between SUVs and sports coupes (you could consider it a large coupe) that made it a refreshingly agile car to drive. Its suspension did an impressive job at maintaining stability (minimal body roll combined with silky smooth ride quality, which is a difficult combination to achieve).
Body roll is a phenomenon whereby car bodies ‘pitch’ or sway when cornering, causing issues such as passenger discomfort, spilt drinks and possibly rollovers. Less body roll is better and is often achieved using technologies such as self-leveling suspensions.
The sound of the wheels falling into the potholes was slightly audible. However, there was minimal road noise and the driving experience was quiet overall.
Aside from not having to choose between a smooth ride and a stable suspension, other benefits of the GLE 43 AMG that stood out included a user-friendly parking camera/viewfinder which you didn’t have to learn how to use, effective air conditioning, and exceptionally comfortable seats.
The 396 HP biturbo (this means it has dual turbochargers) powertrain in the spec that I drove had an aggressive exhaust note and plenty of torque to spare, resulting in effortless acceleration. AMG models tend to have a more aggressive, sporty sound (most notably from the exhaust) than their non-AMG counterparts.
The GLE 43 AMG (the 3.0L V6 model, to be exact) has a fuel economy of 19 MPG combined, 17 MPG in the city, and 22 MPG on the highway according to the DOE. However, these estimates are based on U.S. driving, therefore drivers in other countries may not (and probably won’t) average the same MPG. This figure is just for comparison to other cars U.S. MPG ratings.
Overall this is a well-rounded car that doesn’t skimp on performance or comfort to achieve its luxurious and sporty nature.
Mercedes-AMG is a tuning company headquartered in Affalterbach, Germany, and is the performance brand of Mercedes-Benz.