We purchased a 2016 GLE350 as a replacement for our 2010 Lexus RX350. This is our first Mercedes-Benz, and overall, it's a wonderful car. I'm posting this review mostly to point out the "quirks" we've noticed in our first month of ownership. Note that we've previously driven Lexus and BMW, so those are our primary comparison points. 1. No Bluetooth audio! The Bluetooth only works for phone calls, not for playing music. This was an unpleasant surprise. If you want music from your phone, you have to physically plug it in via USB, and use either the direct audio option, or Apple CarPlay. 2. The navigation system defaults to reading directions aloud. There's no way to change this default; you have to physically mute the voice... every... single... time. 3. The "Dynamic Select" drive mode defaults to "Comfort". There's no way to change this default; you have to physically change it to "Sport"... every... single... time. 4. The in-car Operator's Manual only works while you're in Park, so your passenger can't look something up while you drive. And it's surprisingly sluggish; feels like a circa 1990's computer, chugging away to load the next page. 5. The radio controls are surprisingly "dense." It seems to take an awful lot of clicks to view your favorites, or browse up and down the dial. 6. I still haven't figured out how to store the fuel cap in the "holder". For now I've just let it dangle; I'm pretty sure it's supposed to have a slot, but I can't figure it out. 7. The printed/PDF Owners Manual seems to have been written for non-humans of some kind. The language is stilted, the instructions are riddled with so many warnings that it's really hard to find the actual info, and the info itself is ridiculously sparse and un-helpful. Please, car companies (especially Mercedes), hire an editor who can actually write! 8. After a month of trying, we've yet to successfully actually get the car to park itself, as advertised. Google or YouTube this; you'll find tons of other folks similarly confused, including dealers who humorously try to demonstrate this on YouTube and fail even in the videos! I'm sure it works, but wow, it seems utterly non-intuitive, and I really, really wonder how many total times in the history of Mercedes-Benz how often a driver has actually used the feature to actually park their car.
One complaint about this vehicle is the poor gas mileage, however, I knew about it and chose this model regardless. Complaint #2 is the egregious charge for service; my first oil change/service A cost almost $300!!! Outrageous!
Pros: Styling a little better than older-styled ML series, interior design excellent, comfort excellent, great cargo space Cons: Annoying exhaust systemsounds at low RPMs, sounds like a constant drone at low speeds Sluggish acceleration BMW drivers or older ML owners will probably not like this car.
When I back our new GLE out of our small crowded garage, I feel like the music from Star Trek should be playing that accompanies the Enterprise when it moves from its dry dock in Space. We're seniors and hadn't planned on a new car to replace our '04 320E wagon, until my wife rode in a friend's M class and said she never felt so safe. A neighbor was riding in a new Accord a year and a half ago and was blind sided by an inattentive driver a year and a half ago and took a most a year to recover from her injuries, which made us a little skittish driving. We loaded the GLE with Safety features and we are skittish no more. I've driven a lot of cars in 50+ years (just about every major domestic and foreign brand including Lada). and this is the most solid and controlled. No problems acceleration to get on our 70mph turnpike with the basic 6, but you won't win any drag races with it. This is a luxurious "tank" with every creature comfort. Looking forward to taking it out in the snow once we get some on the East Coast. I don't think it will slow us down in our traveling this year!
I had the opportunity to upgrade from a 2015 ML350 to the new 2016 GLE 350 and thought, why not. I am SO glad I did! I loved the ML350 but after just a few days with the GLE350, I knew I had made a good decision. The technology is so superior and the gear ratio is different so that it has more punch from 1st gear on. The ride is even better especially when you customize it with the sport mode. I felt safe in the ML but this GLE is like riding in a bank vault with all of the additional safety features. I see myself keeping this vehicle for years and years unless of course Mercedes comes up with even more enticing features during the next revision. AND it IS a Mercedes so I know if anything goes wrong or is in need of repair, Mercedes will do a quality job making it perfect again.