2026 Mercedes-AMG GLE 53 Hybrid revealed with inline-six, big battery pack

Here’s the 2026 Mercedes-AMG GLE 53 Hybrid. No, it’s not the 2024 or even the 2025 model – if you want this newly electrified version of the GLE 53, you’ll need to be patient, because while Mercedes is talking about it today, it won’t go on sale for another two years.

So, what’s new? The big news is that the GLE 53 (available in both SUV and Coupe styles) is transitioning to be a plug-in hybrid. Its most alluring quality, that sweet and smooth inline-six, is sticking around, though. Under the hood of the 2026 model is an updated version of Mercedes’ 3.0-liter turbocharged inline-six, and it’s making 443 horsepower. For those counting, that’s 14 more ponies than the current GLE 53’s engine makes. The extra power comes courtesy of updated software and an additional heat exchanger to deal with said power.

However, the real boost in power for the GLE 53 Hybrid is the hybrid-electric portion of the powertrain. A 134-horsepower electric motor brings combined output up to 536 horsepower and 553 pound-feet of torque, making it significantly more powerful than the current GLE 53. Mercedes claims a 0-60 mph sprint of just 4.6 seconds, making it 0.3 second quicker than the current car. That might not sound like a lot for all the added power, but this GLE 53 will undoubtedly be a whole lot heavier thanks to its giant 31.2 kWh battery pack allowing you to travel exclusively under electric power.

We’re likely years from seeing an EPA-rated range for the GLE 53 Hybrid at this point, but the GLE 450e is rated for 38 miles per Mercedes-Benz, and that battery pack is a little smaller than the one fitted to the GLE 53 Hybrid (23.3 kWh versus 31.2). Basically, expect the GLE 53 Hybrid to safely crest the 40-mile mark, and you’ll be able to drive it under electric power at up to 87 mph.

Also similar to the GLE 450e PHEV, the GLE 53 Hybrid will offer DC fast charging at up to 60 kW or home AC charging at 11 kW.

The GLE 53 Hybrid’s chassis features new hardware and software including new stabilizer bars, new stop buffers in the front struts and totally new dampers for the rear. All of the software tying it together – stability control, the all-wheel drive system, steering and damper tuning – has been re-done. There are two additional drive modes, too, one being a fully-electric mode and the other being an electric-hold mode that keeps the battery’s charge where it’s at. When driving on purely electric power, Mercedes says it’s developed a new exterior sound to alert pedestrians of the car’s presence. Of course, it’s an AMG-specific sound, so we’re going to assume it’s meant to attract more attention than is typical.

As for design changes, there are few. Mercedes says the front fascia features an additional opening to direct air toward that new heat exchanger, and it also adds hybrid badging throughout to display that it’s a PHEV. You’ll notice the “GLE 53” badge in the rear has a red outline for an even more look-at-me aesthetic, too.

With the GLE 53 Hybrid being so far off, we suspect the wait for pricing will be over a year at this point, but if you’re interested, make yourself a reminder for 2025 to check back in on this big, performance PHEV.

Related video:

.embed-container { position: relative; padding-bottom: 56.25%; height: 0; overflow: hidden; max-width: 100%; } .embed-container iframe, .embed-container object, .embed-container embed { position: absolute; top: 0; left: 0; width: 100%; height: 100%; }

Related Articles

Back to top button