The other Mercedes GL. The preposterous one. With a price tag and power output to rival the Porsche Cayenne Turbo and 5.0-litre V8 Range Rover. The GL 63 AMG is the Burj Khalifa version of Mercedes’ seven-seat SUV; as applicable to the UK as an 829-metre skyscraper would be to Hounslow - but fascinating nevertheless.
For £91,715 (some £30k more than the Mercedes GL 350) you get flared wheel arches filled with 21-inch AMG alloys - which in turn are filled with manhole cover-sized AMG brakes - chromed AMG quad tailpipes, AMG sports seats, AMG steering wheel and the roll-nullifying Active Curve Control as standard.
Of course what you is really paying for is the generator of 550bhp and 560lb ft of torque up front. The bi-turbo 5.5-litre V8 might not conjure up quite the same misty-eyed affection as the naturally aspirated 6.3-litre found in the C 63 AMG, but it’s a mighty unit nevertheless, and specifically intended to handle heavier loads in the Mercedes range.
Best to get someone else to start the GL 63; that way you can stand out the back and marvel at the wall of sound emerging from its rear end. Don’t expect passers-by to join you in the AMG appreciation society though – unless you’re actually about to drive the thing it probably seems as anti-social as a rocket-powered bus.
Drunk from inhaling 288g/km of CO2, the car’s party trick – getting 2580kg from a standing start to 62mph in 4.9sec – is pretty much irresistible right from the get go. Like most of its rivals, the GL 63 takes a moment or two to overcome its own inertia, and then surges forward through its first three gears like it were attempting to climb into orbit.