Parkers overall rating: 4 out of 5 4.0
  • Lacks modernity of newer Mercedes-Benzes
  • Well-assembled and easy to use
  • High seating position with a commanding view

Mercedes-Benz GLS SUV dashboard

If you’re considering swapping to a Mercedes-Benz GLS from the GL-Class it replaced, then it’ll be a case of spot the difference, for the changes are few in number.

Alterations include a different set of instruments, an alternative design of steering wheel and a revised multimedia rotary controller.

While it’s a pleasant cabin to spend time in when considered in isolation, sitting in the E-Class – let alone the pricier S-Class – reveals how far Mercedes interior design has come in a short space of time.

The GLS’s centre console is topped by a tablet-style multimedia screen that looks like an afterthought compared with the slick arrangement in the A-Class, E-Class and S-Class, while there are numerous buttons that have since been replaced by on-screen menus in newer Benzes.

Mercedes-Benz GLS SUV dashboard quote

Still, traditionalists will be happy that the cruise control system is operated by a stalk on the lower-left of the steering column – a fine, intuitive arrangement that Mercedes has since replaced with wheel-mounted controls.

You sit high in the GLS, the car itself feeling enormous around you – a lack of headroom is unlikely to be a factor for any drivers. This in turn provides an excellent view out, with fine peripheral visibility, in spite of the thick windscreen pillars.

  • Supple, well-controlled air suspension
  • Supremely comfy seats
  • Room for adults in all three rows

Mercedes-Benz GLS SUV comfort

With Airmatic air suspension as standard, comfort is a Mercedes-Benz GLS hallmark – this is one relaxing SUV in which to waft away long journeys.

It’s a big, soft, comfortable car with loads of cabin space in every direction – plus it’s one of the few SUVs with genuine space for adults in each of its three rows of chairs. A bona fide seven-seater.

We found the leather seats to be particularly impressive, and highly adjustable in order to find a fine driving position, although the top-quality pillow-type headrests found in the rear seats of the S-Class ae conspicuous by their absence.

Mercedes-Benz GLS SUV middle-row seats

The front seats do feature a memory function which means you can ask the car to recall a pre-set driving position at the touch of a button. Front and second-row seats are heated too.

Second- and third-row passengers enjoy masses of room, and it’s even possible for a six-foot-tall passenger to sit in relative comfort in the two rear-most seats which fold electrically into the boot floor when you don’t need them.

Mercedes-Benz GLS SUV comfort quote

The middle row folds electrically too, which makes access to the rear easier. The GLS seems better than most other cars we’re driven in this respect, making it a true seven-seater. Only the Land Rover Discovery outdoes the GLS for space and ease of access.

Even on a car as large as the GLS, the standard panoramic glass sunroof is a welcome touch– it lets a lot of light, managing to make it feel even bigger than it is.