After numerous leaks, Mercedes-Benz has finally decided to reveal the facelifted GL which from now on will be known as the GLS. Described as being the “S-Class among SUVs”, the first ever GLS is nothing more than a mildly revised version of the GL with an updated front fascia that now has new headlights incorporating the LED daytime running lights. The grille is now more imposing due to the bigger tri-star logo and the revised double slats while both bumpers have also gone through minor surgery.
The slightly different graphics of the LED taillights along with new body colors and alloy wheel designs round off the exterior changes, so all in all the GLS brings only some subtle exterior tweaks which probably for a lot of people will go unnoticed.
Stepping inside the seven-seater cabin, the most important changes can be noticed in the center console that has made the switch from the integrated display of the infotainment system to the much criticized free-standing tablet-like 8-inch screen. It also comes with a new touchpad and an updated three-spoke steering wheel covered in Nappa leather. At an additional cost, the 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLS will be offered with an optional air ionization system which greatly improves the interior cabin air quality.
The full-size SUV from Daimler has received the latest safety and assistance systems including the standard COLLISION PREVENTION ASSIST PLUS, Crosswind Assist, ATTENTION ASSIST, PRE-SAFE, Brake Assist BAS, cruise control, ESP and electronic AWD traction system with 4ETS. There’s an optional Driver Assistance Package which adds DISTRONIC PLUS with Steering Assist, Active Lane Keeping Assist, Speed Limit Assist, BAS PLUS with Cross- Traffic Assist, Active Blind Spot Assist and PRE-SAFE Brake with pedestrian detection. Those willing to spend more can add a night vision system to go with the optional LED Intelligent Light System and there’s also the MAGIC VISION CONTROL which boosts visibility thanks to the heated adaptive windscreen wiper system. As far as the engines are concerned, the V8 bi-turbo inside the 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLS has received 20 bhp (15 kW) more in the GLS550 4MATIC guise which now delivers 449 bhp (335 kW) and 516 lb-ft (699 Nm) of torque. Buyers will also be able to opt for the GLS450 4MATIC with its 3.0-liter V6 bi-turbo pushing out 362 bhp (270 kW) and 369 lb-ft (500 Nm) while the flagship GLS63 now packs an extra 27 bhp (20 kW) for a total of 577 bhp (430 kW) and a peak torque of 561 lb-ft (760 Nm).
The GLS350d 4MATIC has 255 bhp (190 kW) and 455 lb-ft (616 Nm) from its V6 turbodiesel engine and all of these versions come with the 9-speed automatic transmission (except for the GLS63) and can be had with an optional low-range configuration and a center differential lock.