Affalterbach once again turns its hand to the largest SUV in Daimler’s armoury

Designed to be the S-class of SUVs, the GLS is biased towards the comfort of its passengers more than how fast it can get them to their destinations, but that hasn’t stopped AMG giving the latest version its touch. Revealed alongside the new GLE63 S, the GLS63 tops Mercedes’ SUV line-up to take on the likes of Bentley’s Bentayga.

To ensure the full-fat GLS is not mistaken for a lesser model, it gets the largest grille fitted to any AMG: a new chrome unit with vertical louvres similar to those on Mercedes’ Panamericana-style grilles. Standard Multibeam LED headlights, a more aggressive bonnet, tweaked front and rear bumpers, flared wheelarches, a rear diffuser and four rectangular exhaust pipes also feature. Wheels are 21-inch ten-spoke items as standard, but six other styles are available, including a 23-inch option.

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Powering the SUV is Affalterbach’s 4-litre twin-turbocharged V8 with EQ Boost, providing a peak output of 450kW with 848Nm of torque. With the additional 250Nm of torque and 16kW from the mild-hybrid system, 0-100kmh takes 4.2sec, while top speed is a limited 250kmh. All 450kW are sent to the tarmac through a nine-speed transmission and an all-wheel-drive system capable of transferring all the engine’s power to the rear wheels alone.

Step inside and you’ll find ambient lighting, anthracite limewood trim, the latest MBUX infotainment system with widescreen cockpit, illuminated AMG door sills, a standard Burmester sound system and more. The driver and front passenger are treated to bolstered AMG seats, and a three-spoke nappa-leather steering wheel also features.

S-class elements also make it across to the AMG GLS, giving all seven occupants the luxury of in-car fragrances and heated second-row seats as standard. Second-row occupants also receive an extra 87mm of legroom over the latest GLS’s predecessor thanks to an increase in wheelbase.