Mercedes-Benz has a hot rod AMG version of nearly every model it makes, but it’s also beginning to populate its lineup with lighter AMG Sport variants. These models include some performance upgrades, but aren’t quite as hardcore as the full-bore AMGs.
The latest AMG Sport model is the GLE450 AMG 4Matic, based on Mercedes’ recently redesigned midsize SUV. It follows the GLE450 AMG Coupe 4Matic and C450 AMG 4Matic, and features similar upgrades to those two models.
Under the hood is a 3.0-liter turbocharged V6, which produces 362 horsepower and 384 pound-feet of torque. It drives all four wheels through a nine-speed automatic transmission. The default torque split for the all-wheel drive system is 40/60 front/rear, which should make the 450 AMG 4Matic a little livelier than a standard GLE. Mercedes says it latest creation will do 0 to 62 mph in 5.7 seconds, and reach a top speed of 155 mph.
The GLE450 AMG 4Matic also comes standard with Mercedes’ Aromatic adaptive air suspension, a shorter rear axle ratio, and a sport-tuned steering system. There’s also a Dynamic Select system that alters different vehicle parameters, with five modes to choose from: Individual, Comfort, Slippery, Sport, and Sport Plus.
On the outside, the GLE450 AMG 4Matic is distinguished from less-sporty GLE models by a subtle body kit, 20-inch (21-inch wheels are optional) five-spoke alloy wheels, and chrome tailpipes. As with the other AMG Sport models, the subtle look is almost a throwback to AMG models of a couple of generations ago, which had more of a sleeper vibe than today’s versions.
The interior features a Nappa leather-clad sport steering wheel with a flat bottom, and some aluminum trim pieces. There’s also a smattering of carbon fiber and piano black trim, and brushed stainless steel pedals. Since this is still a Mercedes, there’s also a long list of tech and convenience features, including a Comand infotainment system and Bang & Olufsen BeoSound surround-sound system.
Mercedes is also loading the GLE450 with driver-assistance features, such as Collision Prevention Assist Plus, Crosswind Assist, Distronic Plus, and an intelligent LED lighting system. The price of all of this will be revealed when the GLE450 AMG 4Matic arrives in U.S. showrooms, likely sometime next year.