The next-generation Mercedes-Benz GLE has been spied outside the company’s research and development centre in Germany.
This latest prototype has done away with the temporary headlights, tail-lights and grille, as well as the squared-off false bonnet, seen on earlier development vehicles.
Although there’s still plenty of camouflage and panels obscuring the rear side window design, we can see the overall shape of the next-generation GLE. The new crossover will trade the current car’s sharp edges, creases and details for the more organic forms found throughout the rest of the Mercedes-Benz range.
For the first time, the spy photographers have also managed to get a look inside the new GLE.
Unlike the GLC, which basically shares the C-Class’ dashboard layout, the GLE looks as though it will have a completely unique interior design. While the underlying architecture may be shared with the E-Class, the GLE’s dash has rectangular air vents and floats above a centre tunnel, which features sports car-style grab handles.
That said, the new GLE, like many other models in the Mercedes-Benz range, will be available with two high-resolution screens, one for the infotainment system and the other replacing the traditional instrumentation cluster.
Under the skin, the GLE will be based on the company’s flexible MRA platform for rear- and all-wheel drive cars. Expect to see a selection of four-, six- and eight-cylinder petrol and diesel engines.
Although the GLE may make its debut later this year, we don’t expect to see it in Australian showrooms until 2018.