When it comes to luxury crossovers, your choices don’t get any bigger than the Mercedes-Benz GL-Class. It’s a true full-size family hauler with room for seven adults and whatever they want to bring along. Opt for the BlueTEC with its turbo-diesel V6, and you also get exceptional efficiency for something so grand in scale.
What's New for 2015
The GL350 BlueTEC continues without change.
Choosing Your Mercedes-Benz GL350 BlueTEC
Like every member of the GL-Class, the BlueTEC boasts standard all-wheel drive, luxurious interior appointments and 94 cubic feet of cargo space. The BlueTEC wins the mileage sweepstakes with its turbo-diesel 3-liter V6, which delivers 22 mpg in combined city and highway driving. Horsepower is relatively modest at 240, but you a get a boisterous 455 pound-feet of torque. All models carry a seven-speed automatic transmission and a self-leveling air suspension for exceptional ride comfort.
As you might expect, the GL350 BlueTEC isn’t as quick as your average luxury crossover, but its fuel efficiency is downright stellar for such a large and capable vehicle. We’re willing to bet that most buyers will be perfectly happy with the tradeoff.
Befitting its comfort and luxury mission, the BlueTEC comes loaded with goodies: a sunroof, wood interior trim, a power-folding third row, heated power front seats in premium vinyl or leather, Bluetooth phone and audio, HD radio, power rear quarter windows, LED exterior lighting, a power liftgate and a review camera. A panoramic sunroof and heated second-row seats are available as standalone options.
Most remaining features are bundled into packages:
- The popular Premium package adds power-folding and auto-dimming side mirrors, illuminated front door sills, heated and cooled cupholders, expanded driver seat controls and memory settings, ambient interior lighting, a power-adjustable steering wheel, voice controls, navigation, satellite radio and 10 GB of audio storage.
- The Lighting package equips the BlueTEC with full LED headlights and automatic high-beam control.
- If you're wary of the GL's sheer size, you'll probably like the Parking Assist package, which provides a surround-view camera system, front and rear parking sensors, and an automated parallel parking system.
- There's also the Lane Tracking package with blind spot monitoring and active lane keeping assist.
- The Driver Assistance includes those two features, plus adaptive cruise control with steering assist, cross-traffic alert and assist, pedestrian detection and a collision mitigation system.
The Parking Assist package makes terrific sense in such a large crossover and will probably pay for itself in mishaps prevented.