While in the United States the 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLE comes with two gasoline engines, customers in Europe also have three diesel powertrains to choose from.
The range starts with the GLE 300d 4Matic which is Mercedes code for a 2.0-liter four-cylinder turbo diesel that offers 245 PS (242 hp) at 4,500 rpm and 500 Nm (369 lb-ft) of torque available between 1,600 and 2,400 rpm. Naturally, it’s linked to the 9G-Tronic nine-speed automatic transmission and the 4Matic all-wheel-drive system.
Unsurprisingly, the GLE 300d 4Matic is the most economical model in the range, with a claimed average fuel consumption (NEDC) of 6.4-6.1 l/100 km (44.1-46.3 mpg UK) and corresponding CO2 emissions of 169-161 g/km. Performance isn’t bad either, as the GLE 300d 4Matic goes from 0 to 100 km/h (0-62 mph) in 7.2 seconds and reaches a top speed of 225 km/h (140 mph).
The four-cylinder GLE 300d gets really close performance-wise to the six-cylinder GLE 350d
Next up in the diesel lineup sits the GLE 350d 4Matic, which packs a 2.9-liter twin-turbo inline-six diesel that makes 272 PS (268 hp) at 3,400-4,600 rpm and 600 Nm (442 lb-ft) of torque available constantly from as low as 1,200 rpm to 3,200 rpm.
It too features the 9G-Tronic transmission and 4Matic AWD system, but the difference in performance compared to the base GLE 300d 4Matic isn’t impressive. 0-100 km/h takes 6.9 seconds and the top speed is 230 km/h (143 mph).
GLE 400d 4Matic almost as quick as range-topping GLE 450 4Matic gasoline model
To get the most out of a diesel-powered GLE, one would have to go for the 400d 4Matic model, which uses an upgraded version of the 2.9-liter straight-six unit with EQ Boost assistance. Maximum output is 330 PS (325 hp) at 3,600-4,000 rpm, while peak torque is an impressive 700 Nm (516 lb-ft) at 1,200-3,000 rpm. EQ Boost adds an extra 22 hp and 184 lb-ft (250 Nm) for short bursts of additional grunt.
Performance-wise, the GLE 400d 4Matic gets very close to the range-topping GLE 450 4Matic, covering the 0-100 km/h sprint in 5.8 seconds and topping out at 240 km/h (149 mph).
All diesel engines comply with the Euro 6d emissions standard and can already be ordered in Europe. The base GLE 300d 4Matic is priced from €65,807 (about $75,000) in Germany and £55,685 in the UK, while the GLE 400d 4Matic is available from €76,100 ($86,750) and £64,230, respectively. Deliveries begin in spring 2019.