I have owned this car since new. It has been a love hate relationship. The fuel economy is very good for a full size, 3 row, all wheel drive vehicle. I have found the ride and handling and body rigidity to be sub par. Reliability has been below average with an engine leak at 50,000 miles that required the transmission to be dropped and cost $3,000. One of the air bladders in the suspension went out at 55,000 miles which cost $1000. An emission sensor went out at 60,000 miles which cost $2,000. Fuel filter recall occurred twice. You will get to know your service adviser well. That has been my experience with my other European luxury cars. I like the character and comfort of the car over the Asian makes. Given the lack of personality with the Asian equivalents I may try domestic next because the warranty will be out soon. The extended warranty definitely paid for itself.
I have 2011 GL Since 2013 now after 48 months Engine and transmission start leaking oil rear suspension airbag blasted at highway last year drive assisted sensor stop working, so much trouble spoke to several owners they confirm vehicle have lot of problems
Better reliability and dependability if so many troubles they Benz should recall and fix the problem
Having owned a variety of minivans and large SUV's over the years, we were looking at the new Dodge Durango.
A trip to Carmax to check the trade value on our van allowed us to walk the lot and we were taken by a GL450.
We wanted new, so went to the local MB dealer and drove the 2011 GL450.
End of story, we were sold with the ride, handling, luxury, and style compared to anything we had ever seen.
The dealer encouraged us to try a GL350 diesel, and that really made the deal so much better, to have this kind of performance with this kind of fuel economy.
This car just makes you feel good driving it.
Super-powerful, super-quiet, super-smooth, very luxurious, excellent seating for seven.
Impressive wow-factor compared to any other full-size SUV on the market.
On a recent 600-mile highway trip, I got almost 29mpg.
Around town regularly returns 24mpg...measured.
30-gallon tank means very long time between fill-ups.
As others have said, the COMAND system falls well short of the industry.
I had streaming bluetooth audio standard in my 2007 Ford pickup but you can't get it here without paying extra.
The system controls would be OK if you could access them by touching the screen, but using keys and buttons is very cumbersome.
Fortunately, the voice control is above-average, so once you memorize the commands you need it's fairly easy to do what you need.
Be aware that the step-in height is very high...about the same as our old Ford Expedition.
Without running boards, it's a big step up to get in, but once you are in you won't mind!
I had been driving an Audi a8l (2007) and a Ford escape hybrid (2008) I wanted to consolidate to 1 vehicle--it needed to be an upscale, fuel efficient, and fairly large SUV (I haave 3 dogs and no way were they getting into the Audi). I found that in 3 years my Audi had taken a $58,000 depreciation hit! Still I liked the q7 tdi, and had never owned a Mercedes--I was so put out by Audi, that I went across the street and fell in love with the gl 350 bluetec. Its sumptuous and amazingly comfortable interior, quiet, quiet ride, beautiful rear visibility and increased cargo over the q7 sold me. I love this car! I give it a thumbs up and [violative content deleted] to Audi!
Power 3rd row seats--much more comfortable than Audi's--and completely disappear unlike the Escalade Blind Spot assist Mileage! (more than 24 mpg so far) Turning Radius Great looks (no pinched back end like Lexus and Audi) Saddle head rests in the back that so increase visibility! Cargo space
Towing Hitch seems to come standard--I didn't need it Bigger sun roof
We just recently moved from a 2008 GL 320 CDI to the 2011 GL 350 Bluetec. The fit and finish and additional sound insulation in the 2011 are very noticeable. There are some nice feature upgrades from 2008 to 2011 such as bluetooth, voice control, HD radio etc. MB has definitely taken a step forward on what was already a great vehicle. The larger 20" tires on the '11 are definitely nicer than the 18" on the '08. We loved our previous GL and look forward to even better experience with our '11. In fact already the fuel economy seems slightly improved which was already impressive for such a large vehicle.
Bluetooth, Bluetec and diesel economy, Voice control
Make leather standard equipment. Blind spot detection should be standard on such a large vehicle. Still way to many options for a $72k+ vehicle.