...system Mercedes' Comand system controls entertainment and navigation settings Keyless start standard on GL550 Wood and leather materials Available rear DVD entertainment system Standard heated front seats Heated and ventilated front seats in GL550 Under the Hood Three engines are available, and a seven-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive are standard. Mechanical features include: GL350's diesel V-6 produces 210 horsepower and 400 pounds-feet of torque GL450's 335-hp, 4.6-liter V-8 produces 339 pounds-feet of torque GL550's 382-hp, 5.5-liter V-8 produces 391 pounds-feet of torque...
...Powertrains and Performance: The Mercedes-Benz GL350 Bluetec is powered by a turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 diesel that produces 210 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque. As with every GL-Class, a seven-speed automatic transmission and "4Matic" all-wheel drive are standard. Mercedes estimates the GL350 will go from zero to 60 mph in 9.1 seconds. That's pretty slow, but at least the Bluetec gets pretty good fuel economy with an EPA-estimated 17 mpg city/21 mpg highway and 19 mpg combined. The GL450 gets a gasoline-powered 4.7-liter V8 good for 335 hp and 339 lb-ft of torque. In Edmunds...
...the 2012 Mercedes-Benz GL-Class stands pat as a cozy 7-passenger all-wheel drive (AWD) luxury crossover available as a base diesel GL350 BlueTEC, base gasoline GL450 4MATIC, or top of the line gasoline GL550 4MATIC. Like AWD, a 7-speed automatic transmission is obligatory for all GL models, but this setup brings the GL550 to 60 mph in just 6.5 seconds. The BlueTEC takes about another 2.5 seconds to reach the same benchmark, but where the GL550 leaves off with 12 mpg city/17 highway, the GL350 picks up with 17/21. The GL450 gets expectedly just 1 mpg better than the GL550, but it needs only...
...Fit and finish are also good. Ranking as one of the more unusual upholstery decisions I've seen, the GL350 has a stitched leather dashboard but simulated leather seating, something Mercedes calls MB-Tex. While MB-Tex is remarkably good at emulating the real thing, you have to pay extra to get real leather on the seats — which is incomprehensible in a $60,000-plus luxury SUV. Mercedes' keypad interface for the optional navigation system got easier to use the longer I drove the GL350, but I'm still not a big fan of it. The screen's menus look the same as those in the automaker's S-Class...