The Mercedes-Benz GLE SUV Coupe has been showcased at the Detroit motor show. It will launch in June 2015 as Mercedes' answer to the BMW X6.
What is it?
Mercedes says the GLE Coupe blends SUV and coupe styling. It is based on the ML SUV, itself recently renamed the GLE. This car is due a face-lift in early 2015.
The model gets sporty styling inside and out, changes to the suspension and gear ratios for a sportier drive, and five different driving modes - Individual, Comfort, Slippery, Sport and Sport+ - that make changes to the chassis, engine, suspension and steering systems to make for a softer or sportier drive. It gets four-wheel drive as standard.
Measuring 4900mm long, 2003mm wide and 1731mm high, the GLE coupe is almost identical in size to the BMW X6 at 4909mm, 1989mm and 1702mm, respectively.
Also new is the AMG Sport version, which is a first for Mercedes. This is a new sub-brand of models that are sporty but not as performance focused as full-blown AMG versions. Think of AMG Sport models to AMG as M Performance models are to BMW M cars.
What engines can I choose from?
The GLE Coupe range includes one diesel and two petrol models. The nine-speed 9G-Tronic automatic is the sole transmission, along with four-wheel drive.
The range-topper is the GLE 450 AMG. This is powered by a twin-turbo 3.0-litre V6 petrol engine with 362bhp and 383lb ft of torque. A lower powered version of this engine is offered in the GLE 400 with outputs of 328bhp and 354lb ft of torque.
The sole diesel model - and predicted best-seller - is the GLE 350d. This is powered by a 3.0-litre V6 turbodiesel with 254bhp and 457lb ft.
Mercedes has yet to confirm performance or economy figures. We'd expect these to be revealed in spring 2015 closer to its launch.
How much equipment does the Mercedes GLE come with?
Trim levels and exact specifications have yet to be decided, but Mercedes has confirmed several optional features for the GLE Coupe. An Airmatic air suspension system is optional over the standard steel suspension, while an adaptive damping system is also available. Alloy wheels of 20in in diameter are standard with up to 22in alloys optional. LED front headlights are also standard.
The interior includes Mercedes' latest Comand infotainment system. Sports seats also feature alongside a sound system with eight speakers. The AMG Sport model gets leather seats and carbonfibre trim.
A whole host of safety equipment is also on the options list, including an autonomous pre-braking system, a 360-degree camera for parking assistance, a lane departure warning system, a night-time vision camera, and heated windscreen wipers.
How much will the Mercedes GLE cost?
Prices are yet to be announced, but we'd expect a significant premium of around £10,000 over the equivalent GLE model. This means the GLE 350d is likely to cost around £60,000.
Can I get a discount?
Discounts are not guaranteed to start off with given the GLE Coupe's limited model range and the fact that it is an all-new car. However, discounts of around £5000 can be had on the outgoing ML, so Mercedes has previous in discounting an SUV of this size. BMW's new X6, which only launched a few weeks ago, can already by had with more than £2500 off.
How good are its rivals?
The obvious rival to the GLE Coupe is the X6, which is praised for its driving ability, but loses out on the basis of its price and practicality, meaning it is a three-star car. The sporty SUV class also includes the five-star Range Rover Sport, and three-star Porsche Cayenne, both of which have a greater choice of models.