Mercedes-Benz GLC-Class vs. Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class

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Automotive Editor

Based out of the Washington, D.C. area, Joel Patel is an automotive journalist that hails from Northern Virginia. His work has been featured on various automotive outlets, including Autoweek, Digital Trends, and Autoblog. When not writing about cars, Joel enjoys trying new foods, wrenching on his car, and watching horror movies. 

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, Automotive Editor - December 12, 2018

Mercedes-Benz has a well-rounded lineup of SUVs that come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. The German automaker has two offerings the mid-size segment: the Mercedes-Benz GLC-Class and GLE-Class. The GLC-Class falls on the smaller end of the segment, while the GLE-Class is a little larger than your average mid-size vehicle. While both are luxurious, capable SUVs, there are a few differences that might have you leaning toward one option.

See a side-by-side comparison of the GLC-Class & GLE-Class »

What the GLC-Class Gets Right

The GLC-Class gets a major advantage for being the more affordable of the two. Pricing for the 2019 GLC 300 starts at $41,695, which is $15,000 less than the 2019 GLE 400. While the GLC 300's more affordable price tag will be enough to win over a lot of consumers, the SUV's smaller size is also one of its benefits. The GLC 300 is roughly six inches shorter in length and two inches in width than the GLE 400, making it easier to drive.

Fuel economy is also better for the GLC-Class. The GLC 300 comes with a turbocharged 2.0-liter inline four-cylinder engine that helps the SUV get an EPA-estimated 22 miles per gallon city, 27 mpg highway, and 24 combined. With its twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter V6, the GLC 400 gets 17/23/20 mpg (city/highway/combined).

The GLC-Class is the newer SUV of the two, as the GLE-Class hasn't been redesigned since 2012. The newer design of the GLC is more apparent in the cabin, as the vehicle has a more modern design that's in line with the automaker's other vehicles. The GLE has an older design, which doesn't look as fresh as the GLC's.

What the GLE-Class Gets Right

If you're looking for a large SUV with loads of interior space, the GLE-Class is the better option of the two. The GLE has more rear leg room and shoulder room than the GLC, while cargo capacity is also in the GLE's favor. The GLE has a maximum cargo capacity of 80.3 cubic feet, while the GLC is rated to hold a maximum of 56.5 cubic feet.

The GLE-Class is also the option for consumers looking for a powerful SUV. The base engine in the GLE 400 is a 329-horsepower twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter V6. The AMG GLE 63 S comes with a twin-turbo 5.5-liter V8 that generates 577 hp. The GLC 300's turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-four makes 241 hp, while the range-topping AMG GLC 63 with its twin-turbo 4.0-liter V8 produces 469 hp. With its more powerful engine, the GLE 400 is the better choice for drivers that need something to tow with, as the SUV is rated to haul up to 7,200 pounds.

Need the Extra Space?

With nearly 24 cubic feet of more cargo capacity, the GLE-Class is the SUV of choice for families and those that need something with more versatility, especially as it can tow up to 7,200 pounds.

Verdict: Mercedes-Benz GLC-Class

The recently redesigned Mercedes-Benz GLC-Class is an excellent vehicle that can do it all. It's well sized, has a decent amount of luxury features, and comes in enough flavors to fill all types of lifestyles. The GLC is also much more affordable than the GLE-Class, which makes the smaller SUV that much more attractive.

Take a closer look at the Mercedes-Benz GLC-Class »

Take a closer look at the Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class »

Side-by-side comparison of features, pricing, photos and more!

, Automotive Editor

Based out of the Washington, D.C. area, Joel Patel is an automotive journalist that hails from Northern Virginia. His work has been featured on various automotive outlets, including Autoweek, Digital Trends, and Autoblog. When not writing about cars, Joel enjoys trying new foods, wrenching on his car, and watching horror movies. 

Follow On: Twitter | Website