Mercedes-AMG-GLE-63-1

We’ve acquainted you with the new Mercedes-Benz GLE; now it’s time for her hot sister. The successor to the ML 63 AMG is the Mercedes-AMG GLE 63, which gets a 5.5 litre twin-turbo V8 that delivers, in standard tune, 557 PS at 5,750 rpm and 700 Nm of torque between 1,750 and 5,500 rpm. An even hotter S model raises the bar to 585 PS at 5,500 rpm and 760 Nm of twist between 1,750 and 5,250 rpm.

Truth be told, you’ll recognise most of these numbers from the Mercedes-AMG GLE 63 Coupe that appeared in Detroit in January. Coupled with 4Matic all-wheel drive and an AMG Speedshift Plus 7G-Tronic auto as standard, the GLE 63 does 0-100 km/h in 4.3 seconds, while the GLE 63 S is a tenth of a second faster. Both hit the electronic buffers at 250 km/h, but an optional AMG Driver’s package can increase this to 280 km/h.

Keeping the performance under control is the Airmatic air suspension with AMG Ride Control – adding special damper struts, automatic level control and ADS Plus adaptive damping – as well as a roll-stabilising Active Curve System. There’s also an AMG-specific variable-ratio Sports Direct-Steer system, revised front-axle elastokinematics, a strengthened rear stabiliser bar and an AMG high-performance braking system.

The Dynamic Select system gets an additional Sport+ setting which influences throttle response, gearchange strategy, ESP thresholds, steering effort and behaviour of the continuously-adjusting dampers. The 4Matic system here uses a special transfer case that splits torque 40:60 between the front and rear axles (as opposed to 50:50 in 4Matic-equipped non-AMG models).

Like the GLE 63 Coupe, there’s a deep front fascia with the AMG dual-bar grille, huge intakes and what Affalterbach calls the ‘A-wing’ on the front bumper. You’ll also find bonnet louvres, a rear lip spoiler, a black rear diffuser housing quad tailpipes, and 20-inch AMG multi-spoke titanium grey alloys with 265/45 tyres sitting under flared wheel arches (295/35 R21s optional).

Step inside and sink into perforated Nappa leather sports seats (with the AMG crest on the headrests, no less). You’ll face a three-spoke flat-bottomed AMG Performance steering wheel with silver shift paddles, through which you’ll see chrome-ringed dials with red needles and a carbon fibre-look. There’s a 4.4-inch multi-info display that incorporates a Racetimer, while the S model gets nappa leather exclusive upholstery.