Mercedes-AMG GLE 63 S Review New Zealand
In my not so humble opinion, the idea or concept surrounding a mancave is essentially, escape. It’s a place to call your own. You can ‘design’ it yourself (and by that I mean fill it with every toy and gadget you can lay your hands on), turn up the volume on your stupidly overpowered stereo, and be at one with yourself – or sometimes friends if they’re lucky. The Mercedes-AMG GLE 63 S puts the cave in Mancave, The Mercedes-AMG GLE 63 S puts the cave in Mancave, (no I didn’t repeat myself, the GLE is so big it echo’s).
Let me begin at the end, the rear end that is. Once the auto tailgate lifts and the seats go down, you are presented with 2,300litres of luggage (no strike that) entertainment space. It’s enough room to transport a big screen TV, a game station, a refreshment fridge… time to let your mancave furnishing imagination run wild.
On the subject of large, the GLE 63 S has quite the impressive road stance. It’s 4.85M Long by 1.92M wide by 1.76M tall and weighs in at 2,400kg’s. Now with that much size and volume maybe you’d think this SUV would be rather sluggish, well you’d be oh so wrong. For under its sizable bonnet sits a hand-crafted 5.5L Bi-turbo V8 brute that gives you 430kW of raw power, 760Nm of torque and reportedly moves the AMG from 0-100 in 4.2 seconds, 4.2 seconds (yes I did repeat that!).
So it’s big and fast, but what else does it have? In short, loads. The AMG GLE 63 S that I was given, came in diamond-bright white metallic paint with Mercedes ‘Night Package’. This included 21” Matt Black Alloys, gloss black mirrors, black roofline, beltline and weather stripe, and twin tailpipe elements also in black. Oh and let’s not forget the full-length panoramic roof and LED Intelligent headlight system – this is just the exterior.
The inside is just as well equipped. Heated, ventilated and massaging front seats. The entire furniture is lavished in Nappa leather. The AMG performance wheel has DINAMICA microfibre at ‘3 & 9’, and this feature extends to the roof lining too. AMG instrument cluster, a Harman Kardon sound system that will go up to uncomfortably loud levels (I seriously had to turn this down), TV tuner – are you impressed yet?
Let me add some more icing to this euphonious ride, by way of its Sport+ drive selection. Among other things, engaging Sport+ stiffens and lowers the suspension, increases the throttle and steering response and clears the pipes on the AMG Performance exhaust, essentially putting the Sport into this SUV. The result is magnificent.
The baritone note of the 63 S’s V8, vibrates and resonates throughout the entire cabin, and enlivens the entire driving experience. The turbo’s crash loudly as your race up the gears and pop even louder when you begin to slow down. It’s so very unbecoming of this big SUV and yet it feels so right – it’s a mancave after all. The handling that comes with the GLE’s permanent All-wheel drive is terrific while the AMG SPEEDSHIFT 7G-TRONIC barely misses a beat (certainly not as the rev’s go north).
I have to admit to being caught up in the driving experience. The varied undulations of the country roads that surround my residence allowed the 63 S to stretch its legs and the heavy rock that blasted its way out of the surround sound system was only usurped by the gruffness of the exhaust notes.
Yes I did take the family to do the mundane chores and yes the GLE does these with ease (although it is a snug fit between the car park lines) but I have to admit I preferred being out on the open roads alone – maybe a bit too much (according to the wife).
The Mercedes-AMG GLE 63 S is a beast of epic proportions. It roars with feral barbarity and yet has all the refinements that come with one of the most prestigious brands on the market. From the outside, it’s welcoming and social and has plenty of room for a party of five, but rest assured, when you’re looking to get away from the humdrum that day to day life throws at you, the GLE 63 S is the Mancave you’re looking for.
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