Usually, when automakers start peeling back camouflage on prototypes it means a reveal is getting closer. Technically speaking, this Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe test vehicle is wearing less camo, though we’re at a loss as to why just the front doors are wrap-free. Perhaps Mercedes is trying to distract the casual observer from seeing the front fascia is also free of covers, caught here for the first time among our long list of 2020 GLE-Class spy shots.
Like it or not, the GLE Coupe is coming:
Yes, some camo wrap still exists around the outside edges of the fascia, but these new spy shots give us a pretty good idea of what’s happening up front on the slope-roofed GLE. The overall design is similar to the current model, but the lower intake will shrink in size – pretty much exactly as we’ve seen on the standard GLE-Class SUV. As for the front doors being camo-free, those could be standard-issue GLE-Class as well. In other words, this striptease might not actually reveal anything new, but it’s still our best look of the coupe-ish crossover thus far.
Gallery: 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe spy photos
The real magic happens at the rear, with the sloped roof and rear hatch opening that blurs the line between saloon and SUV. There’s still plenty of camo covering details back there, but our impression of the facelifted "coupe" remains positive. The proportions are better balanced compared to the present-day GLE Coupe, though we still suspect it will be a love-it/hate-it machine for the masses with no middle ground to speak of.
As for the interior and powertrain, there’s no reason to expect this crossover to vary from the full-on GLE SUV. That means a digital cockpit with the MBUX system in full effect, though headroom and cargo space in the back will certainly be less. All four wheels will be powered by a turbocharged 3.0-litre inline-six, with an AMG variant developing well over 400 bhp coming eventually.
As for the standard GLE Coupe, expect the rest of the camo to peel away in September for the Frankfurt Motor Show, if not sooner.