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2015 Mercedes-Benz GL-Class Review

The 2015 Mercedes-Benz GL has engaging performance and a refined interior with plenty of space. However, it ranks in the middle of the competitive luxury large SUV class because rivals have better reliability ratings.

Pros & Cons

  • Potent engine lineup
  • Engaging handling and a comfortable ride
  • Exquisite cabin
  • Menu-heavy infotainment system
  • Rivals have better reliability ratings




Critics' Rating: 9.0
Performance: 8.3
Interior: 8.6
Total Cost of Ownership: 7.0
This model has never been fully tested for safety. Its overall score is being calculated without safety.
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2015 Mercedes-Benz GL-Class Overview

Is the 2015 Mercedes-Benz GL a Good Used SUV?

Yes, the 2015 GL is a good used luxury large SUV. In addition to providing all the interior luxury you'd expect from Mercedes-Benz, the GL is also one of the most fun-to-drive vehicles in the class, thanks to a lineup of potent engines and tight handling. However, there are some minor downsides, including a third row that comes up short on space and a below-average reliability rating for the class.

Why You Can Trust Us

We’ve researched 21 Mercedes-Benz GL reviews, as well as hard data points like reliability scores and cost of ownership estimates, to help you make the best car-buying decision possible.

U.S. News & World Report has been ranking cars since 2007, and our team has more than 75 years of automotive industry experience combined. While we’re passionate about cars, we’re even more committed to providing helpful consumer advice. To ensure our reviews remain impartial, we refuse expensive gifts and trips from car companies, and an outside team handles the advertising on our site.

How Much Is the 2015 Mercedes-Benz GL?

Our site has a few hundred listings for the 2015 GL, with an average price of around $43,700. Prices range from about $33,000 to about $60,000, and vary depending on the vehicle's features, mileage, condition, and location.

See the Best Used Car Deals »

How Much Does the 2015 Mercedes-Benz GL Cost to Own?

The 2015 GL’s costs for gas, insurance, repair, and maintenance are about average for the class. You can expect to pay around $35,900 over five years for these expenses. By comparison, five-year costs for the 2015 Lexus LX are typically around $2,000 higher than for the GL, while these expenses for the 2015 Cadillac Escalade are about $4,700 lower.

Is It Better to Buy a Used or New GL?

The 2017 GLS replaced the GL in Mercedes’ lineup. The 2019 GLS has some improvements compared to an older GL, like the availability of Android Auto and Apple CarPlay smartphone integration. You won't find a diesel version of any GLS model, so if that's what you're looking for, stick to a GL. The 2019 GLS’ base twin-turbocharged V6 is less powerful than the GL’s base V8, but the GLS’ V8 and twin-turbo V8 engines are more powerful than anything you’ll find in the GL.

The 2019 GLS starts at $70,150. You’re better off shopping for a used GL rather than paying such a high premium for a newer Mercedes that doesn’t add much more.

Read about the new Mercedes-Benz GL »

There aren't any new luxury large SUVs you can buy for the price of a used 2015 GL. However, there are a few new luxury midsize SUVs worth considering, like the well-rounded 2019 Lexus RX. It's available in both two-row and three-row configurations, starting at $43,570 and $47,770, respectively. The RX has a ton of standard infotainment and active safety features, an excellent predicted reliability rating, and composed performance.

See the Best New Car Deals »

See the Best New Car Lease Deals »

Which Model Year of the Mercedes-Benz GL Is Best?

The 2015 Mercedes-Benz GL is part of a generation that spans the 2013 through 2016 model years. For 2017, the GL was refreshed and renamed the GLS. Since there were few major changes since the renaming, you may want to consider shopping for an older model in order to save money. The most notable difference in this generation came for 2015, when a twin-turbocharged V6 engine replaced the 2014 GL 450's twin-turbo V8. Both of these engines put out 362 horsepower, and you probably wouldn't notice a difference in performance between them.

Compare the 2014, 2015, and 2016 GL »

How Reliable Is the 2015 Mercedes-Benz GL?

J.D. Power gives the 2015 Mercedes-Benz GL a reliability rating of three out of five, which is about average for the industry but below-average for the class.

Read more about GL reliability »

2015 Mercedes-Benz GL Recalls

At the time of writing, two open recalls apply to the 2015 Mercedes GL. One recall addresses an oil leak that can increase the risk of a fire when in the presence of an ignition source. Another recall involves axle bolts may not have been assembled correctly and can fracture, resulting in diminished handling and an increased risk of a crash. Be sure that a Mercedes-Benz dealer has addressed these issues before you buy a used 2015 GL.

See more information on Mercedes-Benz GL safety recalls »

Which Used Mercedes-Benz GL Model Is Right for Me?

The 2015 Mercedes-Benz GL is available in four trims, each with its own distinct engine. All models come standard with all-wheel drive. The base GL 350 model's turbodiesel engine has plenty of power and delivers the best fuel economy in the lineup. If you're considering a higher trim, we suggest the GL 550. Not only does it have a brawny 429-horsepower twin-turbocharged V8 engine, but it also comes standard with luxury amenities like a Harman Kardon stereo, automatic parking assist, leather upholstery, and multi-contour, ventilated, and massaging front seats.

See 2015 Mercedes-Benz GL trims and specs »

What Does Mercedes-Benz's Certified Pre-Owned Warranty Cover?

Mercedes-Benz offers a certified pre-owned program for vehicles six years old or less and with fewer than 75,000 miles. Eligibility is determined by the vehicle’s initial sale date. Mercedes-Benz certified pre-owned vehicles come with the balance of the original four-year/50,000-mile new-car warranty, plus an additional one-year/unlimited-mileage warranty. This warranty can be renewed for a fee. If the new-car warranty has expired, you’ll receive the one-year warranty with unlimited mileage. Every Mercedes-Benz CPO vehicle must pass a 165-point inspection.

If you’re unsatisfied with your CPO vehicle, Mercedes’ Exchange Privilege program allows you to exchange it for another CPO vehicle of equal or lesser value within seven days or 500 miles. Additional benefits like towing and 24-hour roadside assistance may be available, so read the Mercedes-Benz warranty page carefully.

Among luxury car manufacturers, Mercedes-Benz’s CPO program is about average. It’s better than BMW’s but not as robust as Jaguar’s or Lexus’, according to our analysis.

See the best CPO programs »

How Safe Is the GL?

Like many pricey luxury vehicles, the 2015 Mercedes-Benz GL didn’t undergo any crash testing.

A rearview camera, forward collision warning, and driver drowsiness monitoring come standard. Some have blind spot monitoring, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, automatic parking assist, a 360-degree parking camera, adaptive headlights, and automatic high beams.

See GL safety scores »

2015 Mercedes-Benz GL Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: 2015 Mercedes-Benz GL or 2015 Cadillac Escalade?

The 2015 Cadillac Escalade ranks near the top of the luxury large SUV class. This Cadillac was fully redesigned for 2015. It has more standard features than the GL, including navigation and satellite radio, but the Mercedes' infotainment controls are a little more user-friendly than the Cadillac’s. These SUVs have comparable third-row passenger space and cargo dimensions, but you can get even more room with the Escalade’s extended-wheelbase version. Overall, the GL has better performance than the Escalade, thanks to its composed handling and powerful engine options. Still, the Escalade has an 800-pound towing advantage from its 420-horsepower V8 engine. Although the Cadillac’s average price is several thousand dollars more than the GL’s, the Escalade has an above-average reliability rating. These are both great choices for a used luxury SUV, so you'll have to decide if the better reliability rating is worth the extra dough.

Which Is Better: 2015 Mercedes-Benz GL or 2015 Lexus LX?

The 2015 Lexus LX has a perfect reliability rating of five out of five, which is about the only reason it ranks higher than the GL. However, the Mercedes is superior in nearly every other way. The LX also gets poor fuel economy, and in contrast with the GL, the Lexus has noticeable body lean around turns and sometimes feels underpowered. Although the LX has some premium interior materials, its overall design is outdated. Average prices are around $10,000 more for the LX than for the GL. Save your money, and go with the GL.

Compare the GL, Escalade, and LX »

2015 GL Performance

How Does the 2015 Mercedes-Benz GL Drive?

The 2015 Mercedes-Benz GL's standard engine is a 3.0-liter turbodiesel V6 that produces 240 horsepower and a whopping 455 pound-feet of torque. The GL 450 has a twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 good for 362 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque. A twin-turbo 4.7-liter V8 powers the GL 550, to the tune of 429 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque. The high-performance GL 63 AMG boasts a handcrafted 5.5-liter twin-turbo V8 that puts out 550 horsepower and 560 pound-feet of torque.

All of the GL's engines deliver plenty of power, and the upper-end twin-turbo V8s are especially potent. Despite its considerable size, the GL stays composed through turns with little body roll. The ride is cloudlike even over rough roads. All-wheel drive is standard.

Does the 2015 Mercedes-Benz GL Get Good Gas Mileage?

Unsurprisingly, the 2015 GL gets its best fuel economy with the BlueTec diesel engine. That engine is rated at 19 mpg in the city and 26 mpg on the highway, which are the best numbers of any luxury large SUV from the 2015 model year. The GL with its base engine gets an estimated 17/21 mpg city/highway. Fuel economy from the two most powerful engines is rated at 13 mpg in the city and 17 or 18 mpg on the highway.

2015 Mercedes-Benz GL Towing Capacity

When properly equipped, the Mercedes GL can tow up to 7,500 pounds.

Read more about GL performance »

2015 GL Interior

How Many People Does the 2015 GL Seat?

The 2015 Mercedes-Benz GL seats seven in three rows. Standard seating features include synthetic leather upholstery and front heated seats. Available amenities include genuine leather or Nappa leather upholstery, ventilated front seats, heated second-row seats, a power-access second row, multi-contour massaging front seats, 14-way power-adjustable front seats, a heated steering wheel, and soft-close doors.

The seats in all three rows are supportive and comfortable, but the third row can be a bit tight for adults, especially on longer trips. Like most vehicles manufactured by Mercedes-Benz, the GL has an elegant, luxurious cabin. All surfaces are covered in premium materials.

How Many Car Seats Fit in the 2015 Mercedes-Benz GL?

The Mercedes GL has four complete sets of LATCH child-seat connections. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the system the highest rating of Good for ease of use. The second-row lower anchors are easy to find and access, and the tether anchors are distinct and clearly marked. Tether anchors for the last row are hard to find, and the lower anchors are set deep in the seat. It’s also difficult to maneuver your hands around the anchors to attach the straps.

2015 Mercedes-Benz GL Features

The 2015 GL is packed with interior features, and all models come with dual-zone automatic climate control, a sunroof, and the COMAND infotainment system with a 7-inch display, Bluetooth, HD Radio, a USB port, and mbrace smartphone integration.

Available features include a panoramic roof, second-row sunshades, proximity keyless entry, a Harman Kardon or Bang & Olufsen premium sound system, tri-zone automatic climate control, navigation, satellite radio, and a rear-seat entertainment system.

The infotainment system employs a console-mounted knob. For the most part, the system is easy to use, but accessing some menus requires some digging. Physical buttons and controls on the center stack are intuitively arranged.

See 2015 Mercedes-Benz GL specs »

Read more about GL interior »

2015 Mercedes-Benz GL Dimensions

Mercedes-Benz GL Cargo Space

The 2015 Mercedes-Benz GL has 16 cubic feet of cargo space behind the third row, 49.4 cubic feet with the third row folded, and a maximum of 93.8 cubic feet with both the second and third rows folded. A power-folding third row seat is standard.

2015 GL Length and Weight

The 2015 GL is 16.8 feet long. Its curb weight ranges from 5,335 to 5,754 pounds.

Where Was the 2015 Mercedes-Benz GL Built?

Mercedes-Benz built the 2015 GL in Alabama.

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