2019 Mercedes GLE vs. 2019 Volvo XC60

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

To provide maximum traction and stability on all roads, All-Wheel Drive is standard on the GLE. But it costs extra on the XC60.

Both the GLE and the XC60 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front and rear seatbelt pretensioners, 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, driver alert monitors, available lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and around view monitors.

The Mercedes GLE weighs 677 to 1083 pounds more than the Volvo XC60. The NHTSA advises that heavier vehicles are much safer in collisions than their significantly lighter counterparts.

Warranty

There are over 28 percent more Mercedes dealers than there are Volvo dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the GLE’s warranty.

Reliability

A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without a vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports rates the GLE’s reliability 21 points higher than the XC60.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Mercedes vehicles are better in initial quality than Volvo vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Mercedes 14th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 30 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volvo is ranked 29th, below the industry average.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Mercedes vehicles are more reliable than Volvo vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Mercedes 15th in reliability. With 15 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volvo is ranked 22nd.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ April 2018 Auto Issue reports that Mercedes vehicles are more reliable than Volvo vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Mercedes 9 places higher in reliability than Volvo.

Engine

The GLE has more powerful engines than the XC60:

 

Horsepower

Torque

GLE 400 3.0 turbo V6

329 HP

354 lbs.-ft.

AMG GLE 43 3.0 turbo V6

385 HP

384 lbs.-ft.

XC60 T5 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

250 HP

258 lbs.-ft.

XC60 T6 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl.

316 HP

295 lbs.-ft.

As tested in Car and Driver the AMG GLE 43 is faster than the XC60 T6:

 

GLE

XC60

Zero to 60 MPH

5.4 sec

6.1 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

14.7 sec

15.7 sec

5 to 60 MPH Rolling Start

6.5 sec

6.8 sec

Quarter Mile

14.1 sec

14.6 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

98 MPH

97 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

The GLE has 6.1 gallons more fuel capacity than the XC60 T8 Plug-In Hybrid’s standard fuel tank (24.6 vs. 18.5 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups. The GLE has 5.8 gallons more fuel capacity than the XC60’s standard fuel tank (24.6 vs. 18.8 gallons).

Transmission

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 XC60.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the GLE’s brake rotors are larger than those on the XC60:

 

GLE

AMG GLE 43

XC60 T5

XC60 T6/T8

Front Rotors

13.8 inches

14.8 inches

12.7 inches

13.6 inches

Rear Rotors

13 inches

13.6 inches

11.9 inches

12.6 inches

The GLE stops shorter than the XC60:

 

GLE

XC60

 

60 to 0 MPH

126 feet

131 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the GLE has larger standard tires than the XC60 (255/50R19 vs. 235/60R18). The GLE’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the XC60 (265/45R20 vs. 255/45R20).

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 XC60’s standard 60 series tires. The AMG GLE 43’s optional tires have a lower 40 series profile than the XC60’s optional 45 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the GLE has standard 19-inch wheels. Smaller 18-inch wheels are standard on the XC60.

Suspension and Handling

The GLE has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The XC60’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.

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 XC60 doesn’t offer an active sway bar system.

The front and rear suspension of the GLE uses coil springs for better ride, handling and control than the XC60, which uses transverse leafs springs in the rear. Coil springs compress more progressively and offer more suspension travel for a smoother ride with less bottoming out.

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 XC60 doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the GLE’s wheelbase is 2 inches longer than on the XC60 (114.8 inches vs. 112.8 inches).

For greater off-road capability the GLE AIRMATIC has a 1.5 inches greater minimum ground clearance than the XC60 (10 vs. 8.5 inches), allowing the GLE to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Passenger Space

The GLE has .9 inches more front headroom, .3 inches more front shoulder room, .5 inches more rear headroom, .4 inches more rear legroom and 2.1 inches more rear shoulder room than the XC60.

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the GLE’s rear seats recline. The XC60’s rear seats don’t recline.

Cargo Capacity

The GLE has a much larger cargo area with its rear seat up than the XC60 with its rear seat up (38.2 vs. 30.2 cubic feet). The GLE has a much larger cargo area with its rear seat folded than the XC60 with its rear seat folded (80.3 vs. 50.6 cubic feet).

The GLE’s cargo area is larger than the XC60’s in almost every dimension:

 

GLE

XC60

Length to seat (2nd/1st)

39.5”/68”

37.8”/68.7”

Max Width

49”

43.5”

Min Width

40.5”

43.5”

Height

35.5”

30.6”

Towing

The GLE’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the XC60’s (7200 vs. 3500 pounds).

Servicing Ease

The engine in the GLE is mounted longitudinally (North-South), instead of sideways, as in the XC60. This makes it easier to service and maintain, because the accessory belts are in front.

J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Mercedes service is better than Volvo. J.D. Power ranks Mercedes 6th in service department satisfaction (above the industry average). With a 26% lower rating, Volvo is ranked 14th.

Ergonomics

The GLE’s standard easy entry system raises the steering wheel, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The XC60 doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

The GLE’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The XC60’s rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to open or close them fully.

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 XC60 doesn’t offer heated windshield washer fluid.

To better shield the driver and front passenger’s vision, the GLE has standard dual-element sun visors that can block glare from two directions simultaneously. The XC60 doesn’t offer secondary sun visors.

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the GLE has standard extendable sun visors. The XC60 doesn’t offer extendable visors.

The GLE offers an optional 115-volt a/c outlet, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters that can break or get misplaced. The XC60 doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

Economic Advantages

Insurance will cost less for the GLE owner. The Car Book by Jack Gillis rates the GLE with a number “8” insurance rate while the XC60 is rated higher at a number “10” rate.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the GLE is less expensive to operate than the XC60 because typical repairs cost much less on the GLE than the XC60, including $292 less for a fuel pump.

Recommendations

The Mercedes GLE outsold the Volvo XC60 by 68% during the 2018 model year.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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