The GL-Class is protected by Mercedes Benz’s clever anticipatory PRE-SAFE occupant protection system.
Safety and Security
The GL-Class is protected by Mercedes Benz’s clever anticipatory PRE-SAFE occupant protection system. If the ESP and Brake Assist systems sense that braking has reached a critical level or a skid is imminent, then PRE-SAFE tensions the driver and front passenger seatbelts, closes the side windows and sunroof if fitted and moves the electric front passenger seat (when equipped with memory) into an optimal position to maximise the effectiveness of the airbags and seatbelt.
There are also adaptive front airbags and side airbags for front seat occupants also supplemented with window airbags across all three rows of seats. All seats including the third row feature three-point inertia-reel seatbelts. Those on the front seats have pre-tensioners and adaptive limiters, the outer second row belts have pre-tensioners and limiters, and those on the third row have pre-tensioners.
Front seat occupants are also protected against whiplash injuries thanks to the standard Neck-Pro headrests. In the event of a severe rear-end collision, these automatically and almost instantaneously move forward by 44 mm and upwards by 30 mm to cushion the occupants’ heads and prevent rearward movement.
We were not too pleased to see that rear side bags are a £280 option, as we believe that all possible safety equipment should be standard. Otherwise the Mercedes Benz GL-Class is certainly a safe and protected environment.
Our test car was equipped with an audio system upgrade in the shape of a state-of-the-art Harman/Kardon LOGIC7 surround sound system with 11 speakers and a subwoofer for £510 plus a 6-disc CD changer mounted in the glove compartment, which was an extra £360.
Also included in the test car was a CD/DVD package, which comprises two 7 inch colour monitors, with headphone jacks installed in the backs of the front seat head restraints and a DVD player under the second row seats, which cost £2,080. External audio/video sources or a games console can also be connected to the system.
Satellite Navigation is fitted as standard to the Mercedes Benz GL 420 our car being a ‘57’ plate still had the DVD based system; we understand that this has now been updated to a hard disc based system. One disappointing aspect of the navigation system was that you cannot enter full 7 character post codes the system can only utilize the first 5 characters which in the case of our home address places you some 3 miles away from the planned destination. Although the system does support ‘TMC’ the traffic message channel which is able to update the system with live traffic information, to enable you to automatically avoid accidents and road work delays by re-plotting routes to avoid the trouble spots. On a 400 mile journey from the North of England to the South West it saved us on 3 occasions with an estimated 2 hour saving in journey time.
- Audi Q7
- BMW X5
- Mercedes Benz R-Class
- Porsche Cayenne
- Range Rover
What We Liked
- On-road presence
- Performance and handling
- 7G-Tronic 7-Speed Automatic Gearbox
- AirMATIC air-suspension with level adjustment and Adaptive Damping System
Mercedes Benz GL-Class Road Test Data
|Model Reviewed||Mercedes Benz GL 420 CDI|
|Performance (manufacturers data)|
|0 - 62 mph||7.6 Seconds|
|Top Speed||143 mph|
|Transmission||7G-Tronic 7-Speed Automatic Gearbox|
|CO2 Emissions (NEDC Figures)||g/km|
|Economy (NEDC Figures)|
|Extra Urban||30.7 mpg|
|Euro NCAP Rating||TBA|
|Warranty||3 Years / Unlimited Mileage|
|Price (when tested on the 08/11/08)||£63,642.44|