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The GLE’s pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The Nautilus doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.
To provide maximum traction and stability on all roads, All-Wheel Drive is standard on the GLE. But it costs extra on the Nautilus.
The GLE’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Nautilus doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.
Both the GLE and the Nautilus have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and around view monitors.
The Mercedes GLE weighs 446 to 845 pounds more than the Lincoln Nautilus. The NHTSA advises that heavier vehicles are much safer in collisions than their significantly lighter counterparts.
For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, with its optional front crash prevention system, and its available headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the GLE the rating of “Top Pick” for 2018, a rating granted to only 85 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Nautilus has not been tested, yet.
From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ April 2018 Auto Issue reports that Mercedes vehicles are more reliable than Lincoln vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Mercedes 8 places higher in reliability than Lincoln.
The GLE 400’s standard 3.0 turbo V6 produces 79 more horsepower (329 vs. 250) and 74 lbs.-ft. more torque (354 vs. 280) than the Nautilus’ standard 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. The AMG GLE 43’s standard 3.0 turbo V6 produces 50 more horsepower (385 vs. 335) and 4 lbs.-ft. more torque (384 vs. 380) than the Nautilus’ optional 2.7 turbo V6.
Regenerative brakes improve the GLE Hybrid’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The Nautilus doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.
The GLE has 6.6 gallons more fuel capacity than the Nautilus (24.6 vs. 18 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.
A nine-speed automatic is standard on the Mercedes GLE, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only an eight-speed automatic is available for the Nautilus.
For better stopping power the GLE’s front brake rotors are larger than those on the Nautilus:
AMG GLE 43
The GLE’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs standard on the Nautilus are solid, not vented.
For better traction, the GLE has larger standard tires than the Nautilus (255/50R19 vs. 245/60R18).
The GLE’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 50 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Nautilus’ standard 60 series tires.
For better ride, handling and brake cooling the GLE has standard 19-inch wheels. Smaller 18-inch wheels are standard on the Nautilus.
The GLE offers active sway bars, which help keep it flat and controlled during cornering, but disconnect at lower speeds to smooth the ride and offer greater off-road suspension articulation. This helps keep the tires glued to the road on-road and off. The Nautilus doesn’t offer an active sway bar system.
The GLE has a standard automatic load leveling suspension to keep ride height level with a heavy load or when towing. The Nautilus doesn’t offer a load leveling suspension.
The GLE’s drift compensation steering can automatically compensate for road conditions which would cause the vehicle to drift from side to side, helping the driver to keep the vehicle straight more easily. The Nautilus doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.
For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the GLE’s wheelbase is 2.6 inches longer than on the Nautilus (114.8 inches vs. 112.2 inches).
For better maneuverability, the GLE’s turning circle is .6 feet tighter than the Nautilus’ (38.7 feet vs. 39.3 feet).
For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the GLE’s rear seats recline. The Nautilus’ rear seats don’t recline.
The GLE has a larger cargo area with its rear seat up than the Nautilus with its rear seat up (38.2 vs. 37.2 cubic feet). The GLE has a larger cargo area with its rear seat folded than the Nautilus with its rear seat folded (80.3 vs. 68.8 cubic feet).
The GLE’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the Nautilus’ (7200 vs. 2000 pounds).
The engine in the GLE is mounted longitudinally (North-South), instead of sideways, as in the Nautilus. This makes it easier to service and maintain, because there are no rear spark plugs and the accessory belts are in front.
J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Mercedes service is better than Lincoln. J.D. Power ranks Mercedes 6th in service department satisfaction (above the industry average). With a 8% lower rating, Lincoln is ranked 7th.
Unlike the driver-only memory system in the Nautilus, the GLE offers an optional passenger memory, so that when drivers switch, the memory setting adjusts the driver’s seat, steering wheel position and outside mirror angle and the front passenger seat also adjusts to the new passenger’s preset preferences.
The GLE’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The Nautilus’ standard manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.
Heated windshield washer fluid is optional on the GLE to defrost the washer nozzles and quickly clear ice and frost from the windshield without scraping. The Nautilus doesn’t offer heated windshield washer fluid.
While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors available for the GLE detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The Nautilus doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.
When the GLE is put in reverse, the passenger rearview mirror tilts from its original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirror into its original position. The Nautilus’ mirror doesn’t automatically adjust for backing.
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