At one time, the numbers on the back of Mercedes’ made sense. The SEL 560 had a 5.6-liter V-8; the SL 600 had a 6.0-liter V-12 and the R 350 had a 3.5-liter. BMW was the same, for a while. Those days are long gone. For instance, the GLE350 crossover has a 2.0-liter four; the GLE 450 has a 3.0-liter six and new for 2020 we have the GLE 580, featuring a biturbo 4.0-liter V-8 engine. You’ll be seeing that “580” number more soon, as it will also land on the back end of the full-size GLS SUV featuring the same engine.
In the GLE 580 and GLS 580, that V-8 pairs with the company’s 48-volt on-board electrical system and integrated starter/generator and can add 21 hp and 184 lb-ft to the engine’s base output of 483 hp and 516 lb-ft of torque. It also powers the E-ABC suspension, which we loved in our first drive a few months ago.