After a number of leaks, the 2016 Mercedes-Benz GLS has just been unveiled as the successor to the GL. The new name comes as part of the German company’s overhauled nomenclature with the ‘S’ pointing towards its improved luxury and goal of being the SUV equivalent of a Mercedes-Benz S-Class.

Different variations will be available throughout the world. They include the Mercedes-Benz GLS500 powered by a twin-turbocharged V8 outputting 449 hp and 516 lb-ft of torque. In the United States, this model is badged the GLS550. Elsewhere in the range is the entry-level GLS450 complete with a 3.0-litre turbo V6 outputting 362 hp and 369 lb-ft, the same as other ‘450’ badged models in the Mercedes-AMG Sport line-up.

2016 Mercedes-Benz GLS interior

Elsewhere is the 2016 Mercedes-Benz GLS350d 4MATIC with a V6 diesel and 255 hp and 455 lb-ft. Unsurprisingly, the range-topping Mercedes-AMG GLS63 will be available worldwide and thanks to the tweaked twin-turbo V8, now produces 577 hp rather than 550 hp. Mated to the V8 of the GLS63 is the company’s Speedshift 7G-Tronic transmission, albeit in a tweaked state of tune. Meanwhile, all other variations come standard with a nine-speed 9G-Tronic automatic gearbox.

As evidenced by the official pictures and previous leaks and spy shots, the design of the Mercedes-Benz GLS isn’t massively different than the GL which it replaces. In general, the same shape of the GL has been maintained but as with other new Mercedes-Benz models, has a more curvaceous design. For example, the revised front fascia now includes different headlights reflective of those from the C-Class and S-Class but beefed up to match the size of the GLS. Additionally, enlarged front air intakes are featured as is a different grille.

At the rear, the changes are perhaps less notable but they are still there. Most noteworthy are the revised headlights as well as the faux-diffuser and chrome-topped tailpipes. The cabin is also slightly different from the outgoing model and makes use of the German marque’s COMAND infotainment system sitting atop the dashboard.

The car will be unveiled at the Los Angeles Auto Show 2016 later this month.

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