2024 Mercedes-AMG GLE 53 Coupe Review: Better Equipped And Still Quite Wild

Affalterbach’s midsized SUV-coupe’s refresh brings many new features and tech, as well as a performance upgrade

By Girish Karkera


10 mins read


Published on January 30, 2024

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  • Significantly more torque from the 3.0-litre twin-turbo petrol
  • Exterior changes include new lights, bumpers, wheels and the new AMG logo
  • Standard feature list has been extended. So has the one for optional equipment

Since the GLE got a facelift late in 2023, the GLE Coupe couldn’t have been far behind. Sold in two AMG variants till last year, Mercedes-Benz India has introduced a facelifted version of the second generation. It is the second AMG to be launched in 2024. But this time, it is only available in the relatively less violent ‘53’ spec. While external changes are minimal, features and tech is where it has been given a major overhaul. The facelifted version of GLE 53 is quicker to 100 kmph than the model it replaces, and gets a more elaborate set of creature comforts.


Also Read: Mercedes-Benz Group Global Sales Stood At 2.49 Million Vehicles In 2023


Familiar silhouette with new face and alloy wheel design


2024 Mercedes-AMG GLE 53 Coupe: Design and styling


Changes to the design of the GLE may not be obvious. But park it next to the pre-facelift version and the differences start to emerge. The radiator grille shape is now less trapezoidal and more rounded. The vertical AMG lamellas with the large three-pointed star and AMG badging make for a familiar sight. The bonnet has the new AMG logo with Affalterbach mentioned. The front bumper layout is same but the proportions have changed. It looks more upright now. The bonnet still has those muscular twin creases running from the base of the windscreen to the front. The headlight shape is similar but the internal design has changed drastically. It is a multibeam headlight with new signature DRLs and comes with automatic high beam assist as standard. Just like the headlights, the taillamp shape is similar but internal layout has changed, so has the rear bumper design.


The GLE 53 AMG now looks more upright upfront


The silhouette remains the same. AMG spoiler lip on the hatch complements the slippery profile. Large 21-inch wheels add to its sporty stance. Mercedes-Benz offers four alloy wheel design options of which two are optional 22 inchers. Unlike some other performance SUVs (especially those with a rear bias), both front and rear tyre sizes are identical in the GLE 53 AMG. The rear track however is more than the front. There are a total of nine exterior colours on offer (pictured here is Sodalite Blue). Of these, three are part of the custom ‘Manufaktur’ program.


The GLE 53 AMG is over 5m long and two metres tall


At nearly five metres long and over two metres tall, a GLE Coupe has road presence that is enhanced by its unique coupe design. While the older one hadn’t aged much, the facelift has added more freshness to the design as it tries to woo customers at a slightly higher price bracket. With the standard AMG Night Package, which has a lot of black treatment, the GLE 53 has a sinister yet purposeful look. 


LxWxH: 4961 x 2156 x 1720 mm
Wheelbase: 2935 mm
Ground clearance: 190 mm
Turning radius: 6.15 m
Drag coefficient: 0.34 Cd
Kerb weight: 2375 kg
Wheels: 21-inches (standard)


Also Read: Mercedes-Benz Clocks Record Sales In India With 17,408 Cars And SUVs Sold In 2023


2024 Mercedes-AMG GLE 53 Coupe: Interior

The interior of the 2024 GLE 53 will be a familiar sight for most existing Mercedes-Benz customers. The overall feel is of a premium, plush and a tad flashy room with its generous doses of satin chrome finish inserts, quality leather and detailing.


Updated AMG steering wheel is optional. Note the Maybach GLS-inspired air vents


The steering wheel has been updated and is now a three-spoke AMG one. Still feels great to grip and now has additional steering controls. The buttons are the capacitive type, which we think is a bit bothersome and adds some chaos to the proceedings rather than make it easier for the driver. Inadvertently brushing against a button as your hands move around the steering wheel is quite possible. The dashboard is dominated by a large screen; the central display is touch-controlled, and is intuitive and easy to use. The instruments display is also fully digital and infinitely customisable with various themes and looks aptly supported by ambient lighting. 


Instrument cluster has optional themes including this classic Mercedes-Benz one


Of particular note are the Maybach GLS-inspired AC vents. The GLE 53 AMG boasts of a new Air Package, which is a specially curated aroma that is exclusive to this car and integrated into the climate control system. On the more practical side, it now gets a total of four 100W Type-C fast charging ports – two each at the front and back. And we can tell you, they work. To take things a notch higher, the front cup holders are now temperature-controlled, so you can both cool as well as warm your drinks.


Surprisingly generous leg and kneeroom. 60:40 rear seat split too


The sloping roofline robs a bit of headroom in what is otherwise a spacious cabin for five. Getting in and out can be a bit more cumbersome than in a GLE SUV. There is ample legroom at the rear and with the panoramic sunroof gives a liberating view. The seats are rather comfy with enough under-thigh support and a convenient backrest angle. Assuming most AMG owners tend to drive themselves, Mercedes-Benz has left out features such as rear sun blinds and seat ventilation even as options. Despite the sloping rear roofline, the boot space seems adequate. In case you need more, the rear seats split 60:40 as well.


Lesser cargo area compared to GLE SUV but still adequate


Boot Space: 655 litres
Fuel Tank: 60 litres
Airbags: 9

2024 Mercedes-AMG GLE 53 Coupe: Engine & Gearbox

The AMG GLE Coupe story had started in India with a 43 spec on the first-gen model. This was followed by the 53 and 63 S till 2023. With the facelift, only the 53 carries on with its 3.0-litre bi-turbo petrol engine. It doesn’t necessarily require high-octane fuel. It makes around the same power as last year’s model but the M256M inline six-cylinder unit now makes roughly 40 Nm more. 


Hand-built 3-litre inline six churns more torque than before


State-of-the-art and built at Affalterbach, it uses high-end materials such as aluminium-alloy with zirconium. It is also equipped with an updated Integrated Starter Generator – a mild-hybrid unit than gives it an additional boost of around 20bhp and as much as 200 Nm. This has reduced its 0-100 kmph sprint time by nearly 0.7s, aptly helped by a 9-speed torque convertor-type transmission that has to be one of the best in the business in its segment.


53 4MATIC+: 2999 cc, 6cyl, inline, petrol, 9AT, AWD, 429 bhp, 560 Nm (+20 bhp/200 Nm boost), 0-100kph: 5sec, top speed: 250kph, 6 kmpl (estimated)


2024 Mercedes-AMG GLE 53 Coupe: Performance, ride & handling

The AMG GLE 53 isn’t the car you come to if you are looking for comfort. But strangely, it doesn’t too bad. Despite the large 21-inch wheels on our test car, ride at most speeds felt pliant. The suspension set-up is obviously stiff to help the driver manage all the power at his/her disposal around curves and quick lane changes. You can get thrown around a bit but we have seen more stiffer performance SUVs. There are many drive modes to choose from. Overall ride is more pliant than plush, even in Comfort mode. But the AMG GLE 53 is best experienced in Sport+ because of the handling edge you get.

Like most big AMGs, this too requires to be dealt with respect.


The GLE 53 AMG can now sprint to 100kph in 5.0 seconds


The horses can be unleashed so effortlessly – it will be the fastest five seconds you might have ever experienced. So, it is essential that you have total control at all times. Sport+ mode modulates the transmission and steering feedback to make it easier to point and scoot. Gives you a sense as if the big SUV has suddenly lost some mass. It becomes nimbler and more agile. Now one might feel Sport or Sport+ will make it wilder. Which it does but in a controlled way – imagine a big wild cat running after its prey – it looks chaotic but watch it in slow motion and you will understand how every stride, every swirl of the tail and batting of an eyelid is precise and calculated. That is exactly how this car moves. And you will notice it even without slow-mo.


2024 Mercedes-AMG GLE 53 Coupe: Optional Equipment

This is where a lot of masala can be added to make an AMG GLE 53 Coupe spicier than it already is – or rather more individualistic. For a price, of course. On the driving side what you can get for more money is active roll stabilisation for even better agility and stability, better brakes (distinguished by the red brake callipers) and the AMG steering wheel with its additional control dials. There is also a Track Pace app that one can get access to that analyses the driving and acts as a virtual race engineer while providing all the data – ideal for the odd track day or just general pub bragging rights.


Mercedes-Benz offers AMG steering wheel as optional feature

On the visual side, owners can also ask for red seatbelts, AMG fuel cap, more Nappa leather along with an ‘Exclusive’ trim package that adds more premium inserts around the cabin. 

For further pampering, one can also commission the AMG GLE 53 with a quieter cabin by opting for an Acoustic Comfort Package that uses special glass and sound deadening. Soft-close doors too come as an option, as does a Guard 360 package that includes added remote surveillance, a dash cam and fire extinguisher packed into the SUV.


2024 Mercedes-AMG GLE 53 Coupe: Rivals

Currently, the GLE 53 Coupe has very few immediate rivals in India. The BMW X6 M is not on sale here, nor (officially) is the G63 from Merc’s own stable. The cost structure of private imports puts an Aston Martin DBX in a different league. At its base price, a Porsche Cayenne Coupe could be a serious competitor. The most potent rival, however, would be Audi’s RS Q8, which is rather well rounded, matches the above in spec but again, charges a slight premium.


2024 Mercedes-AMG GLE 53 Coupe: Verdict

The second-generation GLE 53 Coupe was launched in India back in 2020 for Rs 1.20 crore (ex-showroom). With car prices going through the roof in the years following the COVID outbreak – as much due to operational costs as much due to taxes – it last retailed for Rs 1.70 crore. The mid-life enhancements bring with it a bump in price, and the SUV now retails for Rs 1.85 crore (ex-showroom)


Looks unlike anything on the road. Goes unlike most too


While we really like the practicality and proposition of the standard GLE, in AMG guise, the GLE Coupe really shines. Not only does it bring oodles of genuine real performance, it backs it with the convenience of near SUV-level comfort, especially on longer inter-city drives. The added cost notwithstanding, it gets more arsenal to play the game of a luxury performance SUV. Enter the arena with it and you won’t be disappointed.


Price: Rs 1.85 crore (ex-showroom, India)
Warranty: 3 years/100,000km

The Competition (with ex-showroom prices) 

Audi RS Q8 (Rs 2.22 crore), Porsche Cayenne (Rs 1.42 crore), Aston Martin DBX (Rs 3.82 crore)


Looks stunning, top class cabin, high-speed ride, genuine performance.

Ingress/egress, fuel efficiency, more agile AMGs available.



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