$52,778 - $93,616

2018 Mercedes-Benz GLS-Class Interior Review

Scorecard

Interior: 8.5

The 2018 GLS lives up to the Mercedes-Benz reputation for quality. The cabin looks modern and stylish, and there are premium materials everywhere you look. There are three rows of spacious seats, and the interior remains quiet even at highway speeds. Cargo space is good for the class, and while the list of standard features isn’t extensive, there’s plenty of available technology, including a user-friendly infotainment system.

  • "All the while, you're surrounded by the kind of leather-bound comfort you'd expect from a Mercedes-Benz." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Materials and assembly quality in the GLS cabin are top notch." -- Consumer Guide (2017)
  • Materials and design aren't quite in the S-Class league overall, particularly if you focus on the area between the climate controls and the dashboard display, where a flat plastic panel with a number of small buttons makes for a somewhat dated look. Make no mistake, though. This is an exceptionally nice interior by segment standards. The standard MB-Tex vinyl upholstery on GLS350d and GLS450 models does seem a bit low-budget for a vehicle at this price, but you'd probably be hard-pressed to tell it apart from the real leather of some other brands. Moreover, the availability of multiple wood inlays and even diamond-quilted leather upholstery make it easy to add an even higher-end look and feel." -- Edmunds (2017)

Seating

The GLS seats seven and comes standard with leatherette upholstery, heated front seats, a power-adjustable driver's seat, and reclining second-row seats. Leather upholstery, a power-adjustable passenger seat, massaging front seats, ventilated front seats, Nappa leather upholstery, heated second-row seats, a heated steering wheel, and heated and cooled front cup holders are available.

Like many 3-row SUVs, the GLS has the most room up front, with each row offering slightly less space as you head toward the back. Still, each row has ample space for adults to ride without complaint, and the quiet cabin allows you to talk with your passengers without shouting. Driver visibility is outstanding.

Both the second and third rows can easily accommodate two child car seats, with two full sets of LATCH systems in both rows. There is enough room to install the car seats in both rows, but the large opening in the seat for the lower anchor can make installation a bit difficult at times.

  • "Nobody ever complained or yelled 'shotgun' to stay out of the rear seats—there's actually really decent legroom back there (I tried the seats myself—while parked). And getting back there is easy, especially with the optional power-folding second row (at just $400, a must-have)." -- Automobile Magazine (2017)
  • "Seats are comfortable and headroom is ample throughout the cabin. Legroom is best in front and gets gradually tighter in succeeding rows. Indeed, the third row may not be all that adult friendly—but the 60/40-split middle-row seats fold and pivot to ease access to the third row, and there's a fast-acting optional power assist to make this even easier. The cabin is quiet, and large windows enhance all-around driver vision." -- Consumer Guide (2017)
  • "Of course, the GLS's calling card is its roomy adult-size accommodations in all three rows. The standard front seats are agreeable enough, but the optional 'multicontour' seats with heating, ventilation and massage functions are unquestionably the way to go if you can stomach the added cost. … Second-row passengers have plenty of room to stretch out, and although 6-footers will feel a bit cramped in the third row, everyone else should be just fine back there. It's one of the more accommodating third-row seats you'll find in any crossover." -- Edmunds (2017)

Interior Features

Standard features in the GLS include a sunroof, Bluetooth, two USB ports, a 115-volt outlet, HD Radio, an 8-inch display screen, and mbrace Connect, which allows you to lock and unlock your doors, send an address to the navigation system, and start the vehicle from the smartphone app.

Standard driver assistance features include active brake assist, driver drowsiness monitoring, crosswind assist, a rearview camera, and Pre-Safe, which tightens seat belts and rolls up windows automatically before an impending collision or rollover.

Available features include three additional mbrace packages, dual- and tri-zone automatic climate control, a panoramic sunroof, a rear-seat entertainment system, a 13-speaker Harman Kardon or 14-speaker Bang & Olufsen audio system, satellite radio, a Wi-Fi hot spot, a DVD player, voice recognition, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, navigation, and the COMAND infotainment system with touchpad controller.

Available driver assistance features include adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitoring, lane keep assist, cross traffic alert, speed limit assist, parallel and perpendicular park assist, a surround-view camera system, and Pre-Safe Plus.

The GLS comes standard with some advanced features – like driver drowsiness monitoring and crosswind assist – that you won't find in every class rival. However, some features that are standard in competitors are optional in the GLS, including adaptive cruise control and lane keep assist. Furthermore, the GLS' versions of these systems are less precise than in other luxury SUVs. The COMAND infotainment system has intuitive menus, and its touchpad controller is a convenient way to navigate the system, though it does have a learning curve.

See 2018 Mercedes-Benz GLS specs »

  • "Most notably, the infotainment system gets an improved 8-inch display screen (an inch larger than last year) and a touchpad that works in tandem with the default console-mounted control knob. This system continues to be one of our favorites due to its user-friendly menu structure and quick responses." -- Edmunds (2017)
  • The redesigned interior includes a new center screen mounted on top of the dash. The look is modern and trendy, but not everyone loved it. Controlling the screen through the standard COMAND system is easy, as it offers both a scrolling wheel and a touchpad for simple inputs. Also visible are the terrain setting controller and air suspension controls, and both are easy to use." -- Truck Trend (2017)
  • "There's no getting around the fact that the 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLS-Class is a big SUV, but getting around in a GLS-Class is easier thanks to the available Surround View system, which gives you a 360-degree bird's-eye view of your surroundings." -- Kelley Blue Book (2017)

Cargo

The GLS has 16 cubic feet of cargo space behind its third row of seats. That expands to 49.4 cubic feet with the third row folded and 93.8 cubic feet with the second and third rows folded. These measurements are above average for the class, but they’re well below what you’ll get in some long-wheelbase variants of rivals. A power liftgate and power-folding third-row seats are standard. The seats fold flat, giving you a convenient flat cargo floor.

  • Not being one of the lumbering giants of its class, the GLS doesn't have the cargo space of its largest competitors. With the power-folding 50/50 third-row seats down, there's pretty good flat-floored storage space available. Second-row seats retract for even more room when needed, but they don't fold completely flat, and they leave a small gap in the load surface." -- Consumer Guide (2017)
  • "There's not a huge amount of cargo space behind the third row, but fold the seats and it opens up tremendously." -- Kelley Blue Book (2017)
  • Cargo space is compromised when the power-folding third row is deployed, but when the seat is hidden, there's more than enough room for a family of five's belongings." -- Truck Trend (2017)

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