2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class Review

Pros & Cons

  • Several engine choices
  • Quiet, upscale and well-built interior with a roomy backseat
  • Long list of standard safety and technology features
  • Base V6's acceleration is merely adequate
  • Uninspiring handling when going around turns
  • Ride quality with the standard suspension isn't as comfortable as we expect
Other years
Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class for Sale
List Price Range
$23,997 - $75,000

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Edmunds' Expert Review

Overall rating

Mercedes-Benz introduced the GLE-Class in 2016, and the 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class is carried over virtually unchanged. Although the name is relatively new, the vehicle itself is familiar. The GLE-Class is essentially the old M-Class, Mercedes' familiar and popular midsize luxury SUV. Pleasingly, though, Mercedes took care to do more than simply give this SUV a cosmetic face-lift; it also improved the GLE cabin and added new features. The company also added a GLE-Class Coupe model (reviewed separately), a BMW X6-like version with a more aggressively sloping roofline.

One of the more interesting aspects to the GLE is its wide range of engine options. It starts with a base V6, and from there you can upgrade to a turbocharged V6 variant. The plug-in hybrid GLE 550e showed up late last year, giving shoppers interested in high fuel economy a new option to consider. If it's performance you want, Mercedes still has you covered with its AMG models and their neck-straining acceleration. Certainly, there's a version of the GLE-Class to suit many sensibilities.

Even so, it will be worth your time to shop around a little. At the sportier end of the luxury crossover SUV spectrum are the BMW X5 and Porsche Cayenne. The Lexus RX 350 continues to be an impressive all-rounder, while the new Jaguar F-Pace and Volvo XC90 are making waves with their distinctive exterior designs. If you plan on venturing off-road, give the Land Rover LR4 a look. Among this group, the 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class doesn't stray far from the M-Class, philosophically speaking. It's a luxury SUV bestowed with comfort and capability in equal measure. It's worth your attention.

Standard safety features on the 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class include antilock disc brakes, traction and stability control, a forward collision warning system, Pre-Safe (which can identify an imminent crash and automatically take measures to secure occupants), a rearview camera, hill start assist, front-seat side airbags, side curtain airbags and a driver knee airbag. The Mbrace telematics system includes automatic collision notification, emergency assistance, stolen vehicle location, geo-fencing, alarm notification and remote door lock/unlock. The GLE also comes standard with Attention Assist, which monitors driver behavior for signs of drowsiness.

Other available safety technology includes forward collision warning with automatic braking, blind-spot monitoring and intervention, and a lane departure warning and intervention system.

In Edmunds brake testing, an all-wheel-drive GLE 350 came to a stop from 60 mph in 125 feet, which is a few feet longer than the segment average.

Notably, we picked the Mercedes-Benz GLE as one of Edmunds' Best Used SUVs and Best Used Luxury SUVs for 2017.

2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class models

The 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class is a five-passenger SUV that's offered in five different models differentiated largely by the engine selection: GLE 350, turbocharged GLE 400, GLE 550e plug-in hybrid, AMG GLE 63 and AMG GLE 63 S. Partway through the model year, the AMG GLE 43 replaced the GLE 400.

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The GLE 350 comes standard with 19-inch alloy wheels, LED daytime running lights and taillights, front and rear foglights, automatic wipers, a sunroof, a roof rack, rear privacy glass, power-folding and auto-dimming mirrors and a power liftgate. Inside, you'll find dual-zone automatic climate control, wood trim, a power tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, heated and power front seats, driver memory functions, MB-Tex premium vinyl upholstery, LED accent lighting, Mercedes' COMAND electronics interface (with an 8-inch display), a backup camera, a 4G LTE data connection, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity, and an eight-speaker audio system with HD radio, a CD player and a USB port. There are also numerous standard safety features listed in our Safety section.

The optional Premium 1 package includes keyless ignition and entry, a navigation system, satellite radio, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay smartphone integration, a 14-speaker Harman Kardon premium audio system, a rear 115-volt, household-style power outlet, a blind-spot monitoring system and a lane departure warning system. The Premium 2 package includes all of the Premium 1 items plus adaptive LED headlights, automatic high-beam headlights, heated and cooled cupholders and rear sunshades. The Premium 3 package further adds adaptive cruise control, a collision avoidance system, a lane departure warning system and an automated parking system.

The Exterior Sport package includes 20-inch wheels and an AMG body kit. There's also the Night package, which has the Exterior Sport package contents plus gloss-black exterior trim pieces and wheels. Leather upholstery is optional for the GLE 350.

The GLE 400 includes all features from the Premium 1 and Exterior Sport packages, as well as a turbocharged engine, multicolor ambient interior lighting and leather upholstery. An Off-Road package is available for this model only, which includes a low-range gearing, a unique Dynamic Select calibration and a front underbody skid plate.

The GLE 550e plug-in hybrid includes all the Premium 1 features plus leather and unique cabin treatments.

The GLE 400's replacement, the AMG GLE 43, features a more powerful engine, AMG-exclusive 20-inch wheels, an AMG-tuned adaptive air suspension, a sport exhaust, exterior styling upgrades, a flat-bottom steering wheel, aluminum shift paddles and pedals, simulated leather upholstery, and the contents of the Premium 1 package.

The Parking Assist package is available on all the above trims, and it adds a 360-degree camera system and the automated parking system.

The AMG GLE 63 includes the GLE 43's features, plus the Premium 2 and Parking Assist packages, a turbocharged V8 engine, larger brakes, active stabilizer bars, front and rear parking sensors, special leather upholstery, and heated and ventilated seats.

The range-topping AMG GLE 63 S increases the horsepower of the turbocharged V8 and adds 21-inch wheels, a carbon-fiber engine cover, a sport steering wheel, suede headliner and unique upholstery.

Notable standalone options include a panoramic sunroof, a trailer hitch, adaptive air and off-road suspensions, tri-zone climate control, multi-contour front seats with massage, ventilated front seats, heated rear seats, a heated steering wheel, a rear-seat entertainment system and a 13-speaker Harman Kardon or a 14-speaker Bang & Olufsen premium audio system.

The 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class is offered with a total of four different powertrains. All-wheel drive (4Matic) is standard on all but the GLE350, where it's an option that replaces rear-wheel drive. All engines come with fuel-saving automatic engine stop-start technology.

The GLE350 is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 that produces 302 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque and has a seven-speed automatic transmission. EPA fuel economy numbers are 20 mpg combined (18 city/23 highway) with rear-wheel drive and 19 combined (18 city/22 highway) with all-wheel drive. In Edmunds performance testing, the GLE350 with all-wheel drive went from zero to 60 mph in 6.8 seconds, an average time for this segment.

The GLE400 gets a turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 that produces 329 hp and 354 lb-ft and a nine-speed automatic transmission. The EPA estimates it will earn 20 mpg combined (18 city/23 highway). A low-range transfer case and locking center differential are optional.

The GLE550e plug-in hybrid model couples a 114-hp electric motor to the turbo 3.0-liter V6 and seven-speed automatic-based transmission, boosting total output to 436 hp and 479 lb-ft. Zero to 60 mph is claimed to take 5.3 seconds. EPA fuel economy is estimated to be 43 mpg equivalent when starting with a fully charged battery and 21 mpg when operating in normal hybrid mode. Maximum driving range on electricity alone is said to be approximately 18 miles.

Under its hood, the AMG GLE63 takes a big step up to a turbocharged 5.5-liter V8 that cranks out 550 hp and 516 lb-ft of torque. The AMG GLE63 S sports a version of the same engine that produces 577 hp and 561 lb-ft. Both engines use a specially tuned version of the seven-speed automatic, and fuel economy for both is EPA-rated at 15 mpg combined (13 city/17 highway). Mercedes says the AMG GLE63 makes the 0-60 mph sprint in 4.3 seconds and the GLE63 S does the same in 4.2 seconds.

Properly equipped, the GLE350 with rear-wheel drive can tow up to 6,600 pounds; the GLE350 4Matic and all other models can tow up to 7,200 pounds.

Driving

The 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class delivers a plush ride quality on reasonably smooth paved surfaces, but even moderate bumps make their presence known. Compared to other luxury crossovers, the GLE feels overly soft and not all that buttoned down to the road, with handling that is on the graceless side when pushed moderately hard. Opting for the air suspension with active stabilizer bars might help, but so far we haven't been terribly impressed with the base GLE's ride quality.

Likewise, the GLE's steering feels too light, though it offers decent feedback. In short, this is not an SUV for buyers seeking sporty handling. Of course, the barnstorming AMG GLE 63 trims are considerably more capable in this regard.

On the straight-out performance front, the GLE 350's V6 delivers adequate acceleration but tends to feel a bit overwhelmed in a vehicle this size. If you're looking to get going with some degree of gusto, the twin-turbo V6 under the hood of the GLE 400 feels downright quick, and the V8-powered AMG models deliver blazing acceleration anytime you feel the need.

Interior

Although billed as an all-new model when it was introduced last year, the 2017 Mercedes GLE-Class still shares its underlying bones with the now-defunct M-Class model. There's more than a passing resemblance inside and out, though Mercedes updated the cabin with a large, center-mounted display screen and the latest knob-based COMAND system with a redundant touch-sensitive pad for clicking and swiping.

The infotainment system can be intimidating at first because of its myriad features and customization possibilities, but in practice it works fairly well. The availability of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration is a nice addition, too.

Some might find the GLE 350's standard premium vinyl upholstery somewhat out of place on such a premium vehicle, despite breathing and wearing better than leather. Otherwise, though, materials quality and workmanship are excellent. In models fitted with any of the available grades of genuine leather, particularly the optional Designo diamond-quilted leather upholstery, and genuine burled wood trim, the interior's plushness is significantly elevated. Available multicontour front seats are highly adjustable and add several massage programs to the supremely comfortable thrones.

Adults will find comfort and space no matter where they sit, as the tallish ride height means the transmission tunnel barely eats into the cabin. The two sections of the 60/40-split rear seatbacks fold easily to create a roomy cargo hold with a flat load floor. Cargo capacity stays the same, with 38.2 cubic feet behind the rear seats and 80.3 cubes with the seatbacks folded flat. These are average numbers for the segment.


Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the Used 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

2017 350 GLE 4matic
Ray Maddalone,02/19/2018
GLE 350 4MATIC 4dr SUV AWD (3.5L 6cyl 7A)
This review is for a previously owned 2017 I purchased in 2018. I'd give it a 4.5 stars but couldn't see how to do that so I filled out the subratings to help. I traded a 2010 RD E350 Sport for this essentially 7 month old 350 GLE 4matic a little over 9000 miles on it. My other car is a beloved 2014 Audi Q5 TDI (still the best power plant on the planet). The 350 GLE is big, heavy (4600 lb) 5 passenger SUV. It has a large cargo area (much larger than the Q5) and with the rear seats folded down at least twice as much. This review is based on the road trip of 200 miles to pick it up at an out of town dealer and trips around our hometown (mixed driving). I was motivated to do this because I felt the Edmunds video review was unfair assessment compared to the written write-up. The author in the video commented negatively on the ride, lack of road feel in the steering and the blind spots due to the pillars. This is not an off-road SUV though it has a "setting" for it. This is your classic MBZ ride (firm but not jarring with an overall soft feel that still leaves you in control). It is the car you would take on the long trip because of that and the excellent front seats. Yes the steering is like butter but what you expect from this class of vehicle. It is not hazardous soft. It goes where you point it and you don't have to work to park this large vehicle. I don't see the issue for the segment and target audience (more mature drivers looking for luxury ride and appointments). Yes compared to the Q5 the GLE side mirrors are smaller, but the side blind spot warning is excellent. So even if the car alongside me was not in the mirror, it was noted in the mirror via the warning lights. It is not a safety issue. I can see already that gas mileage is going to be 19-20 mph on the highway at the 70+ mph I'm usually going. Moving 4600 lbs will do that. Acceleration is more than adequate. I have played with changing to the Sport setting and it appears to make for smoother starts because in the Comfort mode you have to work the accelerator carefully to start smoothly. Sport starts in 1st gear rather than 2nd the acceleration is cleaner, at least to me. Braking is good, you just have to apply it harder than I am used to. Either the Q5 diesel deceleration or the E350 lighter weight required less braking to coast to stop. Just a learned skill for this larger car. While the screen icons are updated compared to the 2010 E350, the overall layout of the controls is essentially the same as the 2010 system but the system seems to respond better perhaps because of a better processor. The "mouse" pad is not my favorite so far as I use the control knob in the joystick mode to move around the screen. One comment on CPO versus non-CPO cars. We got this SUV before it was CPO'd. There was nothing stopping it getting CPO'd other than it was ready for sale. The dealer said if it had been CPO'd, it would have added around $2500 to the sale price. What you get for that is one year more of warranty without a mileage limit. Yes there is a checklist but the elements of the overall warranty remain exactly the same in either case. Given this vehicle had almost 3.5 years left on the warranty, I did not feel that it was worth the CPO. You should search and read the Edmund's article on CPO versus non-CPO. They pretty much lay out the reason to not worry about buying a pre-owned vs. CPO pre-owned under the right conditions. This car met them and I ended up saving the cash getting the car for $15K below its original MRSP. Car had P1, P2 and Parking assist packages, 20 inch tires with special rims and a towing hitch (which I won't use). You really must get the Parking Assist package because the surround view is well worth it.
Best luxury SUV.
BMWfan,11/06/2016
GLE 350 4MATIC 4dr SUV AWD (3.5L 6cyl 7A)
You can read the reviews and buy a Volvo XC90 or Audi Q7.....or you can buy a car that exudes luxury and looks much more than it costs. The GLE is safe, luxurious, technologically advanced (it drives itself with adaptive cruise control and lane assist), and comfy. I test drove all of the major luxury SUVs -- Audi, BMW, Range Rover, Volvo, Jaguar, Porsche. I also test drove the SUVs that are considered best sellers in their class -- Ford Explorer, Jeep Grand Cherokee, etc. This car blows all of them out of the water in terms of value. The new Volvo and Audi may sound like they are technologically superior based on their Car & Driver reviews since they are new...however, the same technology is available in a more luxurious GLE for thousands less than the Audi, and the reliability is in a class above the Volvo. The Audi also looks like a boring Dodge minivan in contrast to the beautiful lines on the GLE. This is not a sporty SUV like the BMW X5....but I am not the kind of person who buys an SUV to replace my sedan....this is the large functional family car. It is also much more luxurious than the spartan BMW interior design (BMW X5 is plastic-like on its interior; the GLE is significantly more luxurious). I want comfy, luxurious, practical, and value in my SUV. The GLE fulfills all of those criteria. Additionally, it is significantly safer. Best purchase ever. Glad I didn't read the reviews and buy the Audi.
Five stars for this outstanding machine
john trela,10/06/2016
GLE 350 4MATIC 4dr SUV AWD (3.5L 6cyl 7A)
This car is nothing but class. Previously I owned an ML 350 2012, and this one is more superior. While the Mercedes ride is as smooth as ever, the navigation system is much easier to work with and the 360° Camera for backing upis wonderful. The interior of the car is soft very I appealing to the eye and has very nice ambience lighting. Acceleration is terrific as is the sound system. Five stars for sure. Pricey, but worth every penny.
Most comfortable ride Ive ever had
Jmp325,10/10/2016
GLE 350 4MATIC 4dr SUV AWD (3.5L 6cyl 7A)
I drive about 20,000 miles a year for work, so I needed something that would be comfortable and also safe, and the GLE 350 is both! Not to mention stylish and sporty, its the total package.

Safety

NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    DriverNot Rated
    PassengerNot Rated
  • Side Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
  • Side Barrier Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    DriverNot Rated
    PassengerNot Rated
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    Rollover4 / 5
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of Rollover19.8%
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Good
  • Roof Strength Test
    Good
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Good
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test
    Good

More about the 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class

Used 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class Overview

The Used 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class is offered in the following submodels: GLE-Class AMG GLE 63 S 4MATIC, GLE-Class AMG GLE 43 4MATIC, GLE-Class SUV, GLE-Class Hybrid, GLE-Class AMG GLE 63 4MATIC. Available styles include GLE 350 4MATIC 4dr SUV AWD (3.5L 6cyl 7A), GLE 350 4dr SUV (3.5L 6cyl 7A), GLE 400 4MATIC 4dr SUV AWD (3.0L 6cyl Turbo 7A), AMG GLE 63 S 4MATIC 4dr SUV AWD (5.5L 8cyl Turbo 7A), AMG GLE 63 4MATIC 4dr SUV AWD (5.5L 8cyl Turbo 7A), GLE 550e 4MATIC 4dr SUV AWD (3.0L 6cyl Turbo gas/electric hybrid 7A), and AMG GLE 43 4MATIC 4dr SUV AWD (3.0L 6cyl Turbo 9A).

What's a good price on a Used 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class?

Price comparisons for Used 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class trim styles:

  • The Used 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class GLE 350 4MATIC is priced between $23,997 and$42,995 with odometer readings between 20470 and60868 miles.
  • The Used 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class AMG GLE 43 4MATIC is priced between $44,998 and$48,500 with odometer readings between 22676 and37696 miles.
  • The Used 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class AMG GLE 63 4MATIC is priced between $75,000 and$75,000 with odometer readings between 15364 and15364 miles.
  • The Used 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class GLE 350 is priced between $31,997 and$31,997 with odometer readings between 24000 and24000 miles.
  • The Used 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class GLE 550e 4MATIC is priced between $40,000 and$40,000 with odometer readings between 26776 and26776 miles.

Shop with Edmunds for perks and special offers on used cars, trucks, and SUVs near Ashburn, VA. Doing so could save you hundreds or thousands of dollars. Edmunds also provides consumer-driven dealership sales and service reviews to help you make informed decisions about what cars to buy and where to buy them.

Which used 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Classes are available in my area?

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class for sale near. There are currently 42 used and CPO 2017 GLE-Classes listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $23,997 and mileage as low as 15364 miles. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a used car from our massive database to find cheap prew-owned vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class.

Can't find a used 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Classs you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class for sale - 9 great deals out of 17 listings starting at $12,438.

Find a used Mercedes-Benz for sale - 3 great deals out of 6 listings starting at $24,736.

Find a used certified pre-owned Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class for sale - 11 great deals out of 21 listings starting at $12,464.

Find a used certified pre-owned Mercedes-Benz for sale - 2 great deals out of 24 listings starting at $8,032.

Should I lease or buy a 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

Check out Mercedes-Benz lease specials
Check out Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class lease specials