The GL550 is the go-to luxury SUV for consumers who value high-end design and capable utility. It boasts three rows of seats that offer comfort and roomy quarters for all seven passengers.
What's New for 2014
A carryover from 2013, the 2014 GL550 has no changes of note.
Choosing Your Mercedes-Benz GL550
The main decision in a GL-Class purchase is made at the model—rather than trim—level. Mercedes-Benz has something for everything. The diesel-powered GL350 BlueTec pleases economy-minded drivers, while the GL63 AMG high-powered thrills for those who want maximum performance from the large SUV. In between are two family-friendly offerings, the GL450 and GL550.
The sole engine for the more powerful GL550 is a turbocharged V8 that produces 429 horsepower and returns an EPA-estimated 13 mpg in city driving conditions and 18 mpg on the highway. Those fuel economy figures aren't all that impressive in 2014, but owners can comfort themselves with this outstanding figure: The 5,500-pound SUV can hit 60 mph in a brisk 5.5 seconds. All GL550s are equipped with 4Matic, Mercedes-Benz’s all-wheel drive system.
An MSRP of $88,600 is fairly competitive with full-size American rivals, particularly when you consider a wide range of standard features including a hard-drive navigation system with voice control, active parking assist, a sliding glass sunroof, auto-dimming mirrors, heated seats with massage, satellite radio, a rearview camera, privacy glass, rain-sensing wipers and LED daytime running lights.
Standalone options include a heated steering wheel, a rear-seat entertainment system, and heated rear seats. Night View Assist Plus, rear sunshades, a heated windshield washer fluid reserve and a Bang & Olufsen sound system can be specially ordered.
Buyers can also add a few option groups like:
- The Driver Assistance Package features safety features such as active blind spot assist, active lane keeping assist and an emergency braking system.
- The On/Off Road Package adds front under-ride protection, six transmission settings and two-locking differentials.
- The Parking Assistance Package features a surround view camera.
Any GL-Class SUV will comfortably transport seven people in plenty style. We think the lower base prices and running costs of the GL350 BlueTec and GL450 make them more practical choices, but neither has the performance edge that makes a GL550 so exhilarating to drive.