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by Adam Lynton
For the first time, the GL-Class has been given a proper AMG variant.
The second-generation GL-Class was unveiled at the New York Auto Show last month and now Mercedes-Benz has revealed a high performance variant of the luxurious SUV for the first time. The new GL63 AMG comes with an AMG 5.5-liter V8 biturbo with 544hp and 560lb-ft, with performance rated as 0-62mph in 4.9 seconds and a top speed of 155mph (electronically limited). Start/stop comes as standard on the engine, while power is sent to all four permanently driven wheels via the AMG 7-Speed automatic gearbox.
At the touch of a button, drivers can choose between 'Comfort' and 'Sport' suspension modes, and the full air suspension system lowers the bodyshell at higher speeds to minimize drag and increase stability. An AMG high-performance brake system with red calipers is hooked up to the twin five-spoke 21-inch AMG alloys, which set the tone of the refreshed design. The hallmark, upright grille is augmented by high-gloss black louvers and the front valance features large intakes, LED daytime running lights, and blends seamlessly into the flared fenders that come with V8 BITURBO badges.
A chrome trim strip features at the front and rear, where two chromed twin end pipes of the AMG sports exhaust system provide a visual and acoustic highlight. Inside, all seven seats are upholstered in premium leather. Electrically adjustable AMG sports seats feature double stitching in contrasting color and AMG badges in the backrests of the front seats. The flat-bottomed perforated leather AMG performance steering wheel comes with aluminum paddle shifters and in the center of the dash lays a color TFT monitor incorporating the AMG logo and AMG main menu.
Further standard equipment includes stainless-steel AMG running boards and sports pedals, electric glass roof, KEYLESS GO, Active Parking Assist, and Collision Prevention Assist. Special extras include a 360-degree camera, Bang & Olufsen sound system and a panorama sliding roof over all three seating rows. There are no pricing details of the new GL63 AMG, but a price tag somewhere north of $130,000 is expected when the luxury SUV arrives in Europe this November and in US dealerships early next year.