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Wednesday, May 31, 2023

2024 Mercedes-Benz GLE450e Lastly Fills the Hole

Mercedes-Benz has been preoccupied with high-profile EV introductions and shuffling the attendant company EV-nomenclature technique for the long run. However whereas the automaker’s agenda to turn out to be an EV-only concern by 2030 continues to dominate headlines, it quietly slipped the Mercedes-Benz GLE-class 450e plug-in hybrid (PHEV) into its U.S. mid-size SUV lineup for 2024 with little fanfare.

This is not the GLE’s first foray into the world of plugs. For a few years now, the GLE350e and GLE350de gasoline and diesel PHEVs, in addition to the smaller GLC PHEV, have been out there to Europeans. Choose variations of each plug-ins have been earmarked for earlier North American debuts, however phrase is that European demand proved so robust they have been in a holding sample. As a comfort prize, the usual GLE450 has utilized a 48-volt hybrid system since 2020, however the brand new 2024 GLE450e is the primary GLE mannequin offered right here with a plug-in-hybrid powertrain and a big electrical vary.

2024 mercedes benz gle450e


The GLE is the second-bestselling mannequin line in Mercedes’s stateside roster behind the compact GLC, and the 2024 GLE450e joins the returning GLE350, GLE450, and GLE580 fashions, which use turbocharged four- and six-cylinder and V-8 powertrains, respectively. For 2024, the 48-volt hybrid-assist beforehand normal on the GLE450 and GLE580 fashions extends to the GLE350 as effectively. All-wheel drive is normal throughout the board. The Mercedes-AMG GLE53 and GLE63 S fashions are nonetheless in play, too, and we have reviewed them individually.

As for the 2024 GLE450e’s powertrain, the fossil-fuel facet of the equation depends on a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder rated for 248 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque. The electrical componentry consists of a 134-hp synchronous motor that gives an extra 325 pound-feet of torque, drawing on a lithium-ion battery pack with a usable capability of 23.3 kWh. The tag crew is rated for a mixed 381 ponies and 479 pound-feet, putting it above each the GLE350 (255 horses and 295 pound-feet) and the GLE450 (375 horses and 369 pound-feet).

Mercedes pegs the 60-mph time of the GLE450e at 5.8 seconds, a full 1.2 seconds swifter than the automaker’s 7.0-second declare for the GLE350 and simply 0.5 second behind the GLE450’s acknowledged 5.3-second time. It is tempting to think about the 2024 Mercedes-Benz GLE450e PHEV as a child step to the electrical future or as a placeholder for drivers who stay skeptical relating to the promised EV Babylon. And certainly, it is each of these issues.

However the GLE450e can be a totally baked PHEV that operates with seamless precision in any atmosphere whereas ensconcing its passengers in the identical degree of luxurious and options as the remainder of the GLE lineup. It is tranquil at any pace, largely due to the dogged persistence with which the software program favors electrical operation in practically each driving scenario. On the town, on the freeway, or on the agricultural two-lanes of the Smoky Mountains, the GLE450e shows outstanding restraint, dialing in help from the internal-combustion engine solely when completely required. Certainly, my co-driver and I engaged in quiet dialog for a protracted sufficient time that we have been startled when the four-cylinder fired as much as assist the practically depleted battery.

Official EPA fuel-economy and vary estimates for the GLE450e are pending, and Benz officers have been cagey about nailing down a agency EV-only vary quantity. Nonetheless, in our arms, the GLE450e lined an indicated 43 miles of electrical vary throughout mixed metropolis and rural driving in a decidedly typical driving style.

All the elemental GLE driving dynamics stay: It feels smaller and extra agile on the helm than its footprint suggests, and the trip is comfortable. However our automobile’s 21-inch AMG wheels, as a part of the AMG Line look bundle, be certain that vital street imperfections don’t go unnoticed. The electrical motor offers keen acceleration from a cease with the slightest throttle enter; leaping into the PHEV from a conventional GLE requires just a little readjustment to keep away from leaping away from a stoplight. It is a rock at or above freeway speeds and, like its siblings, has an electronically restricted 130-mph prime pace.

Sadly, the regenerative properties of the GLE450e left us wishing for just a little extra refinement within the brake pedal and a bit extra productiveness within the recharging division. Producers have been wrestling with dodgy pedal really feel and uneven braking motion for so long as hybrids have been a factor, and the GLE450e nonetheless struggles. However the quantity of reclaimed vitality—or lack thereof—as indicated by the battery standing indicator on the instrument panel has us scratching our heads.

Like most hybrids and PHEVs, regeneration happens when braking or coasting as directed by the software program, with two completely different regen ranges selectable through the wheel-mounted shift paddles. The primary setting offers gentle regen; the second will increase regeneration and can carry the automobile to a cease—fairly normal stuff.

2024 mercedes benz gle450e


However it’s price noting that we barely managed to nudge the juice meter throughout a virtually 3500-foot descent down the mountain to roughly 761 ft above sea degree. An anecdotal commentary, to make certain, however getting one thing for “nothing” is an inexpensive hybrid thrill that we have come to count on. We’ll discover this commentary in depth after we get a GLE450e to check in-house.

The GLE450e comes geared up with an 11.0-kW AC and a 60-kW DC onboard charger, however no official U.S.-specific charging information is accessible but. Cribbing from its European cousin, which specs a barely bigger 31.2-kWh battery, we estimate that the GLE450e ought to have the ability to be recharged from 20 to 80 p.c in roughly 20 minutes on a 60-kW DC fast-charger. Homebodies trying to restore a totally depleted battery will need to finances as much as 26 hours on an ordinary 120-volt family outlet or simply below 4 hours on a 7.0-kW Degree 2 charger. We count on Mercedes-Benz to have the related star-spangled figures nearer to launch.

Value, too, stays a thriller at this level. We estimate the 2024 Mercedes-Benz GLE450e will begin round $76,000, roughly $8K greater than the usual GLE450. That is considerably greater than the $56,595 determine for the bottom Audi Q5 Premium PHEV (although that mannequin fell wanting its EPA-estimated 23 EV miles in C/D testing). Moreover, the Benz feels way more polished when it comes to inside supplies. The Porsche Cayenne E-Hybrid can be within the combine, nevertheless it begins at practically $90K and has an estimated EV vary of solely 17 miles. The Volvo XC90 Recharge hews carefully to the blueprint of the GLE450e and slides in at simply over $70K ($81K for the Recharge Final) with an EPA-estimated 36 miles of EV vary (29 miles in C/D testing).

Nonetheless, the GLE’s actual bogey right here is the brand new 2024 BMW X5 xDrive50e (which replaces the X5 xDrive45e). The X5 Drive50e begins at $73,495 and claims as much as 40 miles of EV vary from its 25.7-kWh battery—it is nearly as if Munich and Stuttgart shared a spotlight group throughout improvement.

As with most PHEVs, the choice is a numbers recreation. When you think about Benz’s absolutely electrical EQE SUV provides a claimed 253-279 miles of vary for $79,050, consumers have the choice of sidestepping the PHEV and taking the total EV plunge at a comparatively minor upcharge over the GLE450e. Alternatively, if their use circumstances contain lower than 40 miles of driving on a typical day, the PHEV provides the power to dwell the EV promise whereas nonetheless offering a gas-powered security web for longer journeys.

The GLE450e is constructed alongside the remainder of the GLE lineup at Mercedes-Benz’s facility in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. Search for the GLE450e to reach in U.S. showrooms late this summer time.

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2024 Mercedes-Benz GLE450e

Car Kind: front-engine, mid-motor, all-wheel-drive, 5-passenger, 4-door wagon


Base: $76,000


turbocharged and intercooled DOHC 16-valve 2.0-liter inline-4, 248 hp, 295 lb-ft + permanent-magnet synchronous AC motor, 134 hp, 325 lb-ft (mixed output: 381 hp, 479 lb-ft); 23.3-kWh lithium-ion battery pack

Onboard Charger: 11.0 kW

Peak DC Quick-Cost Price: 60 kW

Transmission: 9-speed automated


Wheelbase: 117.9 in

Size: 194.3 in

Width: 76.7 in

Peak: 70.7 in

Passenger Quantity, F/R: 56/51 ft3

Cargo Quantity, Behind F/R: 75/33 ft3

Curb Weight (C/D est): 5800 lb


60 mph: 5.6 sec

1/4-Mile: 14.2 sec

Prime Pace: 130 mph


Mixed/Metropolis/Freeway: 24/25/23 mpg

Mixed Gasoline + Electrical energy: 60 MPGe

EV Vary: 40 mi

Headshot of Andrew Wendler

On-line Editor

Andrew Wendler brings a long time of wrenching, writing, and editorial expertise with quite a few retailers to Automotive and Driver. A rust-belt native and tireless promoter of the area, he as soon as received a $5 wager by strolling the whole size of the elevated Individuals Mover monitor that encircles downtown Detroit.

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