2021 Mercedes-Benz AMG GLE 53

MSRP $72,350

Ranked #10 in Suv

8.3

Overall Rating

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2021 Mercedes-Benz AMG GLE 53 Price, Review, Ratings and Pictures

Updated on: October 5, 2021

Nathan Dyer's image
Nathan Dyer 

Senior Editor


The 2021 Mercedes AMG GLE 53 sits below the monstrous AMG GLE 63 S and above the GLE 580 model. The performance-focused GLE 53 gets an exciting turbocharged six-cylinder engine that produces 429 hp. However, with power lesser than its elder sibling, it remains a practical daily driver. Working alongside the gasoline-powered engine is an EQ Boost Integrated Starter Generator which is powered by a 48-volt electrical system that develops an additional 21 hp and 184 lb-ft of torque. Its AMG-style sporty exterior and interior design make the 2021 GLE 53 stand out from regular GLE models, as a proper performance machine. 

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Pros

Well sculpted muscular AMG exterior design

Smooth engine and intuitive transmission

High safety standards

Affordable price tag

Cons

Not the most efficient option in the segment

Optional packages are expensive

What's New?

No major changes


Features

vehicle bio

base price

$72350

bodystyle

dr SUV

passenger capacity

5

top speed

130 mph

drivetrain

all wheel drive

engine type

displacement

183 cu.in.

horsepower

429 hp @ 6100 rpm

torque

384 lb.-ft.. @ 1800 rpm

transmission

9 speed Automatic w/auto manual

chassis

suspension front

Independent front double wishbone suspension w/anti-roll bar

brake rotors (f/r)

15.8/13.6 in.

capacity

cargo volume

74.9 cu ft.

towing capacity

7700 lbs.

performance

zero to 60 mph

5.2 sec.

standing 1/4-mile

13.4 sec.

warranty

basic warranty

4 yr./ 50000 mi.

drivetrain warranty

4 yr./ 50000 mi.

corrosion warranty

4 yr./ 50000 mi.

roadside assistance

Yes


Pictures & Videos


Trims

Base$72,350 onwards

Colors and Styles

2021 Mercedes-Benz AMG GLE 53 in Black color
Black

Vehicle images are guides only and may not reflect the model's exact specifications/features– exact specifications/features should be confirmed with the seller.

Ratings

Pricing and Features

8.0

Engine and Performance

8.0

Interior

8.0

Exterior

9.0

8.3

OVERALL RATING

Expert Review, Pricing Analysis and Buying Guide

8.3

Overall Rating


At a starting MSRP price of $72,350, the 2021 GLE 53 is quite affordable than most of its competitors which include the likes of the Audi SQ7, BMW X5 M50i, and the Porsche Cayenne S. It is available in both coupe and SUV body style options, and unique to the GLE 53 is an optional third-row. The 2021 Mercedes AMG GLE 53 with the recent redesign is now more enticing to look at than ever before. 


8.0/10
Engine and Performance

8.0/10
Interior

9.0/10
Exterior


2021 Mercedes-Benz AMG GLE 53 Features

It has almost become a tradition of sorts, where every Mercedes-Benz model has to have an AMG alternative. These performance-oriented models are not only expensive but also continue to be as ostentatious as their base counterparts. The 2021 Mercedes AMG GLE 53 is one such prime example. This standalone model is like the entry-level AMG GLE SUV, followed by the range-topping AMG GLE 63 S. 

But don’t let the hierarchy fool you, the GLE 53 comes fitted with all the expensive quilts and tech, with a bevy of standard features. Some of which include a tilt and slide sunroof, push-button start, power-adjustable Sport front seats with driver seat memory with ventilation and massaging upgrades, and 64-color ambient lighting that sets the visual tone of the cabin. 

The available dual-zone climate control can also be upgraded to four-zone climate control for an additional $860. Some of the standard safety features available with the 2021 Mercedes-AMG GLE 53 are a rearview camera, a blind-spot monitoring system with auto-dimming mirrors, and a unique semi-autonomous Distronic system that controls the distance based on the proximity of the vehicle in front. 

Trim

Mercedes-AMG GLE 53 SUV

MSRP

$72,350

Key Features

Heated Front Seats

 

Power Liftgate

 

Black MB Tex upholstery with Red Stitchings

 

Sport Front seats

 

KEYLESS-GO

 

Optional Four-Zone Climate Control

 

Optional Panorama Roof

 

Optional; Heated 2nd -Row seats

Mercedes also offers a total of 7 optional packages, which include the likes of the 3rd-Row Seating Package, Warmth and Comfort Package, ENERGIZING Package Plus, Air Balance Package, Driver Assistance Package Plus, Exterior Lighting Package, and last but not the least - the AMG DYNAMIC Package Plus. The 2021 AMG GLE 53 gets quite expensive with the package list piled on, and yet still it might cost less than its competitors by a few thousand dollars. It gets a standard engine option and is available only with an AWD configuration. 

Which Trim should you buy?

The 2021 AMG GLE 53 is available as a single trim variant and there is not much to debate about when it comes to finalizing a buying decision. However, whether we would buy it over its rivals, is a question that remains unanswered. 

Absolutely! The new Mercedes-AMG GLE 53 hits the sweet spot by combining performance and practicality. Moreover, by being less expensive than its rivals, even after packing the SUV to the hilt with optional specifications and packages, the Mercedes-AMG makes for the perfect buy in the segment.

2021 Mercedes-Benz AMG GLE 53 Engine and Performance

8.0/10

There are two GLE AMG models, with two different engines. The 2021 Mercedes AMG GLE 53 gets the 3.0L twin-turbocharged inline-6 engine that produces a healthy 429 hp and 384 lb-ft of torque. The engine comes mated to a 9-speed automatic transmission that sends power to all wheels via AMG Performance 4MATIC+ all-wheel drive. 

The available EQ boost generator is more of an electric assist system and does not contribute to any feasible range figures. The power helps drive the water pump and air-conditioning compressor. The electric unit does generate 21 hp and 184 lb-ft of torque, but it is more useful in stop-and-go situations, where getting ahead of the traffic is a need to be done. 

Crafted from the engineers at the AMG wing of Mercedes-Benz, the GLE 53 is powerful and engaging. However, it produces the lowest outputs and is the slowest clocking 5.2 seconds to 60mph, and breaches the quarter-mile mark in 13.8 seconds.

Models

2021 Mercedes-AMG GLE 53

2021 BMW X5 M50i

2021 Audi SQ7

2021 Porsche Cayenne S

MSRP

$72,350

$82,800

$85,000

$89,900

Engine 

3.0-liter twin-turbo Inline-6

4.4-liter Twin Turbo V8

4.0-liter twin-turbo V8

2.9-liter twin-turbo V6

Drivetrain

AWD

AWD

AWD

AWD

Transmission

9-speed shiftable automatic

8-speed shiftable automatic

8-speed shiftable automatic

8-speed shiftable automatic

Power 

429 hp @ 6100 rpm

523 hp @ 5500 rpm

500 hp @ 5500 rpm

434 hp @ 5700 rpm

Torque

384 lb-ft @ 1800 rpm

553 lb-ft @ 1800 rpm

568 lb-ft @ 3000 rpm

405 lb-ft @ 1800 rpm

0-60 MPH (sec)

5.2

3.9

4.3

3.4

Quarter mile (sec)

13.8

12.7

12.1

11.9

Top Speed (MPH)

130

177

155

180

Both the 2021 BMW X5 M50i and 2021 Audi SQ7 are packed in with V8 engines that produce over 500hp and are quicker than the Merc. However, the 2021 Porsche Cayenne S comes with a V6 engine, but it produces more power and torque and is astonishingly quick. Statistically speaking, the Cayenne S is almost two seconds quicker than the AMG and records the highest top speed of 180 MPH, a true Porsche in all regards. 

In this competition, the 2021 Merc AMG GLE 53 might come across as a slower SUV and it does not have direct competition for its price point. Rivals cost at least 10 grand more and churn out more power. And in this case, the 2021 AMG GLE 63 S would make more sense for it comes with a 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8. 

How well does the 2021 Mercedes AMG GLE 53 handle?

The 2021 Mercedes AMG GLE 53 might not be as fast as its contemporaries, but it should not be mistaken for a slower car. This is an eager SUV and the powertrain hits the sweet spot, without being blisteringly fast. The 9-speed transmission is smooth and intuitive, it isn’t tuned to dampen the spirits in the name of efficiency. And without an automatic upshift when the rev-counters reach the Red Zone, the 2021 GLE 53 can stretch its muscle. 

For added enthusiasm, the available AMG electronic limited-slip rear differential does encourage you to push this SUV around corners. Besides the availability of air suspension with anti-roll bars that keep the SUV steady around corners, the optional AMG Active Ride Control takes matters a notch higher, by soaking up unevenness even better. 

2021 Mercedes-AMG GLE 53 Braking Performance

The 2021 Mercedes AMG GLE 53 does get the benefit of an AMG high-performance braking system with red distinct brake calipers. However, the available 15.8-inch rotor brakes at the front and 13.6-inch rotor brakes at the rear are not the biggest. In addition, there are available active brake assist and attention assist on board, to keep matters safer. The available Driver Assistance Package Plus adds brake assist with cross-traffic monitoring, active distance assist, steering assist, and a speed limit assist. While the AMG GLE gets sizable rotors and is also not the heaviest SUV in the segment, so we expect it to have a braking distance of somewhere between 110-120 ft, which is similar to the competitors. 

Models

2021 Mercedes-AMG GLE 53

2021 BMW X5 M50i

2021 Audi SQ7

2021 Porsche Cayenne S

Brake Rotors: Front (inches)

15.8

15.1

15.8

15.3

Brake Rotors: Rear (inches)

13.6

13.5

13.8

13

Curb Weight (lbs.)

5082

5260

5291

4740

60-0 MPH (feet)

NA

118

111

118

The 2021 Audi SQ7 gets similarly sized 15.8” rotor brakes at the front, and bigger 13.8-inch rotor brakes at the rear. It is also heavier than the GLE 53, by almost 200 lbs. So, with less weight, stability is supposed to be more in favor of the Merc. BMW X5 M50i’s front brake rotors are comparatively smaller at 15.1 inches than the rest of the three SUVs. The Porsche Cayenne S on the other hand has the least curb weight in the competition, at 4725 lbs. This is supposed to give the Porsche the advantage, but with a superior QUATTRO, the Audi SQ7 has the best stopping distance at 111 ft, while both the BMW and Porsche manage to come to a halt at 118ft. 

2021 Mercedes-Benz AMG GLE 53 Fuel Economy

With twin-turbo V-engines, SUVs are expected to be quite the guzzlers. But the 2021 Mercedes-AMG GLE 53 with its 3.0-liter V6 engine is good for 18/22/19 mpg in city/highway/combined driving situations. These figures might not sound impressive, but the 22.5 gallons of fuel tank give a top range of 495 miles on the highway. 

Models

2021 Mercedes-AMG GLE 53

2021 BMWX5 M50i

2021 Audi SQ7

2021 Porsche Cayenne S

MPG (City)

18 

16

15

18

MPG (Highway)

22

22

21

22 

MPG (Combined)

19 

18

17

19

Fuel Capacity (Gallons)

22.5

21.9

22.5

23.7

Range (City/Highway/Combined, in Miles)

405/495/427.5

350/482/503 

338/473/383

427/521/450.3

The 2021 Audi SQ7 has a similarly sized fuel 22.5-gallon fuel tank, but with the V8 engine, its MPG figures drop to 15 mpg in the city. The BMW X5 M50i has the smallest fuel tank in this competition that can hold about 21.9-gallons, but its V8 is more efficient. The 2021 Porsche Cayenne S gets a bigger 23.7-gallon fuel tank which boosts up its range to 521 miles on the highway. So, hierarchy-wise, the Porsche Cayenne is the most efficient averaging a mileage of 19 MPG similar to what the Porsche Cayenne S offers, followed by the BMW and Audi that are a notch or two lower. 

2021 Mercedes-Benz AMG GLE 53 Interior

8.0/10

The 2021 Mercedes AMG GLE 53 is a premium vehicle, and the interior is a testament to that fact. The cabin feels intricately laid out, with prominent AMG badging. The 3-spoke steering wheel is in line with the GLE-Class lineup. Apart from that, the twin 12.3-inch touchscreen infotainment system and driver's gauges are loaded with the latest MBUX software. The upper dash and door trims are finished in top-notch Nappa leather and the seats are covered in black MB-Tex upholstery with red stitchings. The pedals are in brushed aluminum, and the standard 64-color LED ambient lighting with illuminated door sills does give the cabin an upscale touch. 

In its standard guise, the GLE 53 can accommodate 5 people, but for an additional $ 2,100, a third row can opt as well. The front seats are sports seats, with power memory options and four-way lumbar support. There are also heated and massaging options available with the 2021 AMG GLE 53, for both front row and second row. 

Models

2021 Mercedes-AMG GLE 53

2021 BMWX5 M50i

2021 Audi SQ7

2021 Porsche Cayenne S

Seating Capacity

5

5

7

5

Front Row (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (in)

40.5/59.3 /40.3

40.7/60.0/39.4

39.9/59.5/41.7

NA/NA/NA

Second Row (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (in)

36.9/58.3/40.9

39/58.1/37.4

38.8/58.5/38.8

NA/NA/NA

Third Row (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (in)

NA

NA

35.9/49.4/29.2

NA

Cargo Capacity (cu-ft)

33.3

33.9 

14.2

27.2

When it comes to interior dimensions, the 2021 Mercedes AMG GLE 53 has a more than average-sized cabin in its competition. Especially the second row, which sees 40.9-inches of legroom, compared to the 38.8-inches of the Audi SQ7. The front also enjoys equally spacious legroom in the AMG GLE 53, but the Audi is a tad more spacious. But, with its standard three-row configuration, the cabin of the SQ7 feels unsurprisingly rounded and welcoming. However, opting for the optional third-row seats does make the cabin feel a bit cluttered. 

Being German vehicles, there is not much that you have to worry about interior quality and design. Each cabin reeks of plushness and has the best of materials available at the buyers’ disposal. However, if we were to choose one, purely based on ergonomics, aesthetic appeal, and comfort, the Mercedes-AMG and BMW tend to lead the segment. While the Audi and Porsche are also uber-luxurious, the dual-screen setup and haptic touch-sensitive controls on both these SUVs, respectively, could be a deal-breaker for some. 

Standout interior features:

  • 64-color ambient lighting
  • Optional Four-zone climate control
  • Multiway Power Adjustable front seats with 4-way lumbar support
  • Front Sport seats
  • Black MB Tex upholstery with red stitchings

What’s there to keep you entertained?

Mercedes’ latest MBUX infotainment system is the latest infotainment software that is available with the 2021 AMG GLE 53. This intuitive software is seamlessly displayed on the Merc’s signature 12.3-inch dual-screen setup. This system can be accessed via touch, a knob, and voice, as well. Aside from that, the steering is also mounted with all the relevant controls in the form of small touchpads and buttons. Both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are supported, along with Bluetooth streaming and SiriusXM. For your audio needs, you get a 13-speaker 590 W Burmester Surround Sound system.

Standout infotainment features:

  • Voice Control with Natural Language Understanding
  • 12.3-inch dual touchscreen setup for multimedia and instrument cluster
  • MB navigation
  • Hands-free Bluetooth interface with audio streaming
  • Mercedes me Connect services for 3 years
  • 5 USB-C ports
  • Inductive Wireless charging with NFC pairing
  • Optional AMG heads-up display

2021 Mercedes-Benz AMG GLE 53 Exterior

9.0/10

The Mercedes-Benz GLE Class continues unchanged after a complete redesign from last year. The AMG-style Panamericana grille on the front fascia flanked by two LED headlights with two LED DRLs does give the 2021 GLE 53 an imposing stance. It rides on standard 21-inch AMG twin 5-spoke wheels, and these can be upgraded to 22-inch AMG forged spoke wheels. A power liftgate is standard alongside a standard sunroof. For an additional $1,000, it can be upgraded into a panoramic sunroof. 

When it comes to its exterior dimensions, the AMG GLE 53 is slotted below the GLS - which are the biggest Merc SUVs. The GLE 53 measures 194.4-inch long, with a 117.9-inch long wheelbase. With the standard AMG 4MATIC+ all-wheel-drive system and hybrid powertrain components, it shoots the curb weight by 5082 lbs, and yet it is lighter than the BMW X5 M50i and Audi SQ7.

Models

2021 Mercedes-AMG GLE 53

2021 BMWX5 M50i

2021 Audi SQ7

2021 Porsche Cayenne S

Curb weight (lbs)

5082

5260

5291

4725

Length (inches)

194.4

194.3 

199.6

193.7

Width (Inches)

79.3

78.9

77.6

78.1

Height (Inches)

70.2

68.7

68.5

66.8

Ground clearance (inches)

NA

8.3

NA

NA

Wheelbase (inches)

117.9

117.1

117.9

114.0 

Both the Mercedes-AMG GLE 53 and Audi SQ7 have the same wheelbase length at 117.9-inches. But, the Audi is the heaviest in this segment. The 2021 Porsche Cayenne S is the opposite, and is the lightest at 4725 lbs, whereas, the 2021 BMW X5 M50i is the tallest in this segment with a height of 87.3-inches. 

In terms of design, the Audi Q7 looks like an executive vehicle, built especially for family hauling. However, all other SUVs look distinct with an element of quirkiness improving their overall appearance. Amongst the available options, the Porsche Cayenne S and Mercedes-AMG GLE 53 have the potential to appeal to the younger section of buyers, while the BMW with its finesse and streamlined design is liked by all. 

Standout exterior features:

  • Aluminum roof rails
  • Standard 21-inch AMG twin-spoke 5-spoke wheels
  • AMG Carbon fiber trim
  • Illuminated running board
  • Optional Panoramic Sunroof
  • LED DRLs

2021 Mercedes-Benz AMG GLE 53 Safety

The AMG GLE 53 has not been officially tested by the NHTSA and IIHS, but the standard Mercedes-Benz GLE Class has been rated by the IIHS as the “2020 Top Safety Pick+” model. Aside from that, the AMG GLE 53 gets a standard 7-airbag system with dual front and side with a driver knee airbag as well. Additionally, there is an Automatic Braking System, Brake Assist, Stability Control, and Traction Control available as standard options. The optional Driver Assistance Package is available for $1,950 with advanced safety features like Active Distance Assist DISTRONIC PLUS, Active Stop, etc. 

Standout safety features:

  • Active Distance Assist Distronic
  • Pre-Safe, Mercedes Benz Emergency Call Service
  • Attention Assist, Blind Spot Assist
  • Active Brake Assist
  • Active Lane Keeping Assist
  • 360-Degree Camera
  • Crosswind Assist
  • Blind-spot Monitor

2021 Mercedes-Benz AMG GLE 53 Competition

2021 Mercedes AMG GLE 53 SUV vs 2021 BMWX5 M50i

The BMW X5 is anyway more exciting and engaging to drive than the Mercedes-AMG GLE 53. The monstrous 4.4-liter twin-turbo V8 under the hood of the X5 M50i gives it a quicker 0-60 mph at 3.5 seconds. While the GLE 53 does get an inline-6 engine option, its oneness lies in its palatial build quality and a rather affordable price tag. Aside from the price and quality, there are no standout factors as such that put the Mercedes at an advantage above the BMW X5 M50i

2021 Mercedes AMG GLE 53 SUV vs 2021 Audi SQ7 

The Audi SQ7 and Mercedes-AMG GLE 53 SUV are rather closely matched. While price is undoubtedly a point of difference between the two German SUVs, both these vehicles vaunt luxuriant cabins and are similar to an extent in terms of exterior dimensions. However, the Audi SQ7 gets a better performing engine at its disposal and comes with a three-row configuration as standard. While Mercedes-AMG also provides a three-row setting option with better trunk volume, but at a relatively lower price, the GLE 53 makes for a better choice, if buyers can make their peace with compromised performance. 

2021 Mercedes AMG GLE 53 SUV vs 2021 Porsche Cayenne S

The Cayenne S is a typical Porsche. It weighs less and is expensive. Despite a smaller capacity V6 engine, the Porsche Cayenne S takes the acceleration figures right up to the most powerful BMW X5 M50i. However, the interior quality of Merc AMG is better than the Porsche, which feels more minimalistic, compared to the sophisticated Merc.

2021 Mercedes-Benz AMG GLE 53 Final Verdict

As was mentioned before, the 2021 AMG GLE 53 SUV hits the sweet spot. The fact that this is the cheaper performance SUV, compared to the likes of the BMW, Audi, and Porsche - the AMG GLE 53 does come across as an enticing offer. The ample power and the experience behind the wheels of the AMG GLE 53 are equally enthralling. On top of that, the high riding stance gives it a classic look. There is no doubt that the 2021 Mercedes AMG GLE 53 SUV is a true luxury SUV, and it doesn’t like to overdo it one bit. 

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