2020 Mercedes GLE vs. 2019 Audi e-tron

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/03

Full-time four-wheel drive is optional on the GLE. Full-time four-wheel drive gives added traction for safety in all conditions, not just off-road, like the only system available on the e-tron.

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 e-tron doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the GLE and the e-tron have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front 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, blind spot warning systems, rearview cameras, rear cross-path warning, available lane departure warning systems and around view monitors.

Warranty

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There are over 26 percent more Mercedes dealers than there are Audi dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the GLE’s warranty.

Reliability

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J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Mercedes vehicles are better in initial quality than Audi vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Mercedes 12th in initial quality. With 12 more problems per 100 vehicles, Audi is ranked 22nd.

Engine

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/03

The GLE 580’s standard 4.0 turbo V8 hybrid produces 81 more horsepower (483 vs. 402) and 26 lbs.-ft. more torque (516 vs. 490) than the e-tron’s electric motors.

As tested in Consumer Reports the GLE 450 is faster than the Audi e-tron:

GLE

e-tron

Zero to 30 MPH

2.3 sec

2.9 sec

Zero to 60 MPH

6 sec

6.3 sec

Quarter Mile

14.4 sec

14.8 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

100 MPH

99 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/03

The GLE 350’s maximum EPA estimated driving range on a full tank of fuel is 607.5 miles, after which it can be refueled at any gas station in minutes. The e-tron’s range is only 204 miles, after which the minimum recharge time is 30 minutes for only an 80% charge at a specially configured quick charge station not available in most areas. A full recharge at a conventional charging station can take up to 9 hours.

Brakes and Stopping

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The GLE stops much shorter than the e-tron:

GLE

e-tron

70 to 0 MPH

174 feet

182 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

115 feet

128 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/03

For better traction, the GLE’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the e-tron (F:275/45R21 & R:315/40R21 vs. 265/45R21).

The GLE’s optional 315/40R21 rear tires provide better handling because they have a lower 40 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the e-tron Prestige’s optional 45 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the GLE 580 offers optional 22-inch wheels. The e-tron’s largest wheels are only 21-inches.

The GLE has a standard space-saver spare tire so you can replace a flat tire and drive to have the flat repaired or replaced. A spare tire isn’t available on the e-tron; it requires you to depend on roadside assistance and your vehicle will have to be towed.

Suspension and Handling

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The GLE 450 offers an available adjustable active suspension system, which counteracts cornering forces actively, limiting body roll and improving handling and stability. Audi doesn’t offer an active suspension on the e-tron.

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 e-tron 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 e-tron (117.9 inches vs. 115.3 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the GLE is .9 inches wider in the front and 1.6 inches wider in the rear than on the e-tron.

The GLE 450 handles at .83 G’s, while the e-tron Prestige pulls only .80 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

For better maneuverability, the GLE’s turning circle is .6 feet tighter than the e-tron’s (39.4 feet vs. 40 feet).

Chassis

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The Mercedes GLE may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 750 to 1050 pounds less than the Audi e-tron.

Passenger Space

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The GLE offers optional seating for 7 passengers; the e-tron can only carry 5.

The GLE has .7 inches more front headroom, .7 inches more front shoulder room, 1 inch more rear headroom, 1.8 inches more rear legroom and 1.1 inches more rear shoulder room than the e-tron.

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the GLE’s middle row seats recline. The e-tron’s rear seats don’t recline.

Cargo Capacity

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The GLE has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat up than the e-tron with its rear seat up (33 vs. 28.5 cubic feet). The GLE has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the e-tron with its rear seat folded (75 vs. 57 cubic feet).

Towing

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The GLE’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the e-tron’s (7700 vs. 0 pounds). The e-tron’s maximum towing capacity is only 4000 pounds.

Servicing Ease

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/03

J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Mercedes service is better than Audi. J.D. Power ranks Mercedes fifth in service department satisfaction. With a 13% lower rating, Audi is ranked 8th.

Ergonomics

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The GLE’s power window, power lock, power mirror and cruise control switches are lit from behind, making them plainly visible and easier to operate at night. The e-tron’s cruise control switches are unlit, making them difficult to find at night and operate safely.

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

The GLE’s Active Parking Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, starting, stopping and changing direction automatically. The e-tron doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Model Availability

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/03

The GLE is available in both rear-wheel drive and four-wheel drive configurations. The e-tron doesn’t offer a two-wheel drive configuration.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/03

The Mercedes GLE outsold the Audi e-tron by over 9 to one during 2019.

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