The 2-stage Electronic Stability Program (ESP®) can reduce skidding, increase driving safety and adapt the vehicle to the chosen style of driving.
To do this, the system constantly compares current driving conditions with the driver's input. If discrepancies are identified, the system applies braking to individual wheels in order to align driver requirements with actual conditions and to prevent the vehicle skidding. In doing this, the parameters for steering angle and lateral acceleration are taken into account.
The 3-stage Electronic Stability Program (ESP®) can reduce skidding, increase driving safety and adapt the vehicle to the chosen style of driving.
Three control strategies are available at the push of a button. With the ESP® switch the driver can choose between "ESP® ON" and "ESP® OFF", as well as an additional ESP® mode for off-road driving.To do this, the system constantly compares current driving conditions with the driver's input. If discrepancies are identified, the system tries to align actual operating conditions to the driver's intentions by applying the brakes to individual wheels, and to prevent the vehicle from skidding. In doing this, the parameters for steering angle, lateral acceleration and yaw rate are taken into account.
The Driving Assistance Package Plus makes an active contribution to safety in everyday driving situations. The proximity control, lane-change control and blind spot warning functions together with the brake system optimisation all contribute decisively to safe travel and a safe arrival.
The ACTIVE CURVE SYSTEM reduces the vehicle's roll angle when cornering by using its active suspension stabilisers. This enhances ride comfort for the vehicle occupants and boosts driving dynamics at mid-range speeds (winding rural roads) as well as at high speeds (motorway). The system allows the greatest possible degree of articulation and thus even better traction for off-road driving.
The ACTIVE CURVE SYSTEM determines the roll forces acting on the vehicle by means of pressure sensors in the front and rear axle rotary actuators and a lateral acceleration sensor. An electronic control unit then sends actuating signals to the valve blocks on the front and rear axle, thus controlling the oil flow in the system produced by the hydraulic pump. The pressure in the chambers and the configuration of the active suspension stabilisers mounted on each axle are then adjusted to the driving situation.
Improved perceptual safety and reduced reaction times for drivers in following cars: the adaptive brake lights can make a significant contribution to preventing rear-end collisions by displaying emergency braking signs to vehicles.
If the driver brakes hard or initiates emergency braking from a speed greater than 50 km/h, the brake lights flash in order to warn traffic behind. If the vehicle comes to a stop from a speed greater than 70 km/h, the hazard warning lamps are switched on automatically.
Active Lane Keeping Assist can warn the driver by means of a discreet vibration of the steering wheel immediately if the vehicle unintentionally drifts across a lane marking which has been registered by the system, and leaves the lane it is in.
If the marking is an unbroken line and the driver does not react to the warning, the system can apply the brakes to individual wheels as required.
Active Blind Spot Assist helps the driver to avoid potentially critical situations by monitoring the areas to the left and right of the vehicle when changing lane.
This is done by short-range radar sensors monitoring the hard-to-see blind spot areas when the vehicle is travelling at speeds above 30 km/h. If the system detects a vehicle in the monitored area, a warning triangle appears in the relevant exterior mirror.
The anti-lock braking system (ABS) can enhance driving safety, especially in critical braking situations. When braking heavily, ABS can prevent the individual wheels from locking by modulating. This ensures that the vehicle remains directionally stable and can be steered while maintaining maximum braking power. In other words: ABS allows the driver to brake and steer simultaneously – allowing precise evasive manoeuvring – in order to avoid an accident.
The acceleration skid control (ASR) system works together with the 4ETS Electronic Traction System for all-wheel drive. ASR helps to prevent individual wheels spinning or the car sheering out to the side, particularly when moving off on snow, ice or gravel, by reducing the power supplied to individual wheels in a targeted way. If, however, it registers that a wheel is starting to spin, 4ETS applies braking pressure to the wheel in a controlled way until the necessary grip on the driving surface is restored.
Brake Assist (BAS) can provide assistance to the driver during emergency stops. The system can recognise emergency braking from the speed at which the brake pedal is depressed and can automatically supply full braking power.
The anti-lock braking system (ABS) simultaneously meters the braking power up to the slip threshold – the vehicle remains steerable. Once the driver releases the brake pedal, automatic brake boosting is immediately terminated.
The ADAPTIVE BRAKE system improves ride comfort and safety by helping to perform critical braking manoeuvres more safely with the basic function of the ABS anti-lock braking system, while convenience functions support the driver in everyday driving situations.
The Electronic Traction System 4ETS can increase safety in critical driving situations: it is a driving dynamics control system which helps maintain traction and handling through appropriate activation of the wheel brakes and engine management.
The Electronic Traction System ETS forms part of ESP® and brakes the drive wheels individually if they start to spin. This means that starting off and accelerating is also possible on slippery surfaces, e.g. when the road is icy on one side. In addition more drive torque is transferred to the wheel(s) that still have traction.
The system can identify the speed limits shown on road signs, display the permitted maximum speed in the instrument cluster and align it with the data in the navigation system. This is particularly useful on long, monotonous stretches of road with changing traffic signs or along routes with road works.
The LED bicolour tail lamps give the car a striking external appearance and improve active safety in traffic with their fast response.
The taillamp and side marker lamp use LED fibre optic technology and the indicators LED technology, while the brake lamp, reversing lights and rear fog lamp use bulbs.
The Intelligent Light System improves visibility in dark conditions by adjusting its bi-xenon headlamps to the current driving situation. So, for example, illumination is wider on a country road; and on motorways it is significantly extended. The system also features enhanced fog lamps as well as active light and cornering light functions.
In conjunction with the ON&OFFROAD package, the off-road light can also be switched on if the "Off-road 1" or "Off-road 2" drive program is activated. This swivels the bi-xenon headlamp units 6 degrees outwards. The light is distributed symmetrically and the light output is increased by 3 watts. In addition, the LED cornering lights are turned on permanently while the dynamic bending mode function and the headlamp range adjustment are deactivated.
Night View Assist Plus significantly improves visibility when it is dark and there is oncoming traffic. The system supports the driver by helping to ensure that any potential dangers are not overlooked, even when there is oncoming traffic and without having to switch to main beam.
The system works with infrared headlamps and an infrared camera which transmits an image as a clear grey-scale image which is shown in the central display of the COMAND Online multimedia system. Pedestrians can be automatically identified and highlighted in the display. With this option, it is easier to identify people, animals and objects even when visibility is poor.
The reversing camera offers convenience and added safety. The camera integrated in the tailgate transmits an image of the area behind the vehicle to the COMAND Online multimedia system display. The camera image not only makes parking easier but also aids in manoeuvring on terrain with visibility limitations.
The Crosswind Assist can help the driver to keep the vehicle on course, considerably increase the driver's sense of security and prevent inappropriate responses to sudden gusts of wind. With the ESP® sensor system, strong gusts of side wind can be recognised in good time and the brakes can be actuated automatically to correct the vehicle's direction.
In this way the system can prevent strong, gusting side winds causing the vehicle to go off course suddenly. Actuation of the brakes on the side of the vehicle facing the wind creates a yaw response which counters the crosswind disturbance. The track offset experienced by the vehicle is reduced as a result.
The Lane Keeping Assist feature warns the driver by means of a discreet vibration of the steering wheel as soon as it detects the vehicle is unintentionally crossing lane markings which have been registered by the system and there is a risk the driver will leave his lane. If, prior to crossing the lines, the indicator had been actuated or the steering wheel firmly turned, the system assumes that the lane change is intentional and does not react.
Blind Spot Assist uses two radar sensors in the rear bumper to monitor the blind spot at speeds above 30 km/h and can warn the driver against dangerous lane changes if the system detects another road user in the critical area to the right or left of the vehicle.
The system comprises a short-range camera system with four cameras and a control unit, which together can provide a bird's-eye view of the vehicle and its surroundings. One camera is fitted in the centre of the radiator grille at the front, one camera is fitted in each of the exterior mirrors and one camera is fitted in the centre of the tailgate. The resulting "virtual viewpoint" produced by the camera images covers an area of approximately three metres in front of and behind the vehicle. The images are shown on a display in the head unit.
When reversing or parking, additional guide lines, already familiar from the reversing camera function, are displayed to help orientation and the parking manoeuvre. The swivel range when turning the wheel is shown along the sides of the vehicle. The camera image changes automatically when the gear is changed (forwards/reversing). The four camera views can also be selected individually through the central controls in the head unit.
The BAS PLUS Brake Assist system can help to prevent a rear-end collision, or at least reduce the impact speed. With this system, two radar systems monitor the short, medium and long-range areas in front of the vehicle and detect objects up ahead. Their distance from the vehicle is calculated and the relative speed of the vehicles in front is determined compared with the vehicle’s own speed.
If the system detects a severe shortening of the distance, such that a rear-end collision may occur, then the BAS PLUS Brake Assist system springs into action. The electronic system calculates the braking deceleration required to avert the accident. If the driver hits the brakes hard, BAS PLUS recognises this and automatically optimises the braking pressure needed to prevent an impact. Depending on the car’s speed and its distance from the vehicle in front, BAS PLUS can either implement controlled braking or, if necessary, increase braking power up to maximum force. BAS PLUS engages only if the driver’s braking reaction is not sufficient to prevent an accident. BAS PLUS shuts off braking support if the driver stops braking or the radar no longer detects an object in front of the car. At the heart of the BAS PLUS Brake Assist system, which is available in conjunction with the optional DISTRONIC PLUS system, are sensors which monitor the area surrounding the vehicle and detect potential dangers at lightning speed.
Too small of a gap between vehicles is the main cause of severe accidents. The newly developed radar-based collision warning system COLLISION PREVENTION ASSIST can improve safety and ride comfort by warning drivers when the gap to preceding vehicles is too small and can support the driver’s braking when it detects danger.
When travelling at speeds of more than 7 km/h, the system can recognise insufficient gaps to vehicles ahead. When the system detects the danger of a rear-end collision it can issue a visual and acoustic warning to the driver.
The PRE-SAFE® occupant protection system, which is fitted as standard, can recognise critical driving situations and, if necessary, pre-emptively activate reversible safety systems to help reduce the risk of injury to the vehicle occupants. To do this, PRE-SAFE® permanently monitors sensor data from systems such as the ESP® and BAS , and can thus, for example, recognise vehicle over/understeering as well as emergency braking.
The airbags for the driver and front passenger provide protection for the head and torso in a collision, and also afford additional stability to the entire body. They are thus able to mitigate the severity of injuries sustained in an accident. The airbags are deployed when the crash sensors detect an impact of sufficient force.
The active bonnet can reduce the risk of injury to pedestrians and cyclists. If the system identifies a collision, the rear section of the active bonnet rises up by approximately 80 miilimeters by means of pyrotechnics. This produces additional deformation space to absorb the impact energy.
ISOFIX allows quick and easy child seat attachment in the rear. Its fixed anchorage points ensure a high degree of protection in the event of an accident. Two attachment points per (outer) seat are located in the backrest area and are directly connected to the vehicle chassis.
The kneebag on the driver’s side helps to protect the legs in a collision and also stabilises the entire body. It can thus help mitigate the potential severity of injuries sustained in an accident. If the crash sensors detect a collision of a certain severity, the kneebag is deployed.
The sidebags for the driver and front passenger (combined thorax/pelvis bags) provide protection for the occupants’ upper torso and pelvis area in a side impact, and also afford additional stability to the entire body. They are thus able to mitigate the severity of injuries sustained in an accident.
The sidebags for the outer seats in the second row help to protect the body in a side-on collision. They stabilise the entire upper body and can help to reduce the severity of injuries sustained in an accident..
They are triggered if the crash sensors register acceleration or deceleration forces acting on the vehicle in excess of a specific threshold. The sidebags deploy at chest height between the side of the vehicle and the occupants
The front and roll-over sensor system delivers information to the central control unit, so as to quickly activate restraint systems such as the airbags and the belt-tensioners in a frontal collision or if the vehicle rolls over, as appropriate to the situation.
In a side-on collision of a sufficient force (and other accidents with a high level of lateral dynamics), the risk of an occupant's head smashing against the side of the vehicle or objects entering the vehicle is reduced by the windowbags, which cover the side windows upon inflation.
Once released, the windowbag covers the side pane between the A and C-pillars like a curtain. This leads to a large area of the side being covered by the windowbag. The windowbags are inflated at the same time as the sidebags (combined thorax/pelvisbags), as a rule on the side of the vehicle absorbing the side impact.
To reduce consequential damage after an accident and support the work of the rescue services, a number of different actions are initiated, depending on the type and severity of the accident:
 Available for GL 63 AMG only.
 Not available for GL 63 AMG.
 Part of the optional Driving Assistance package Plus.
 Standard with GL 63 AMG.
 Part of the optional COMAND Online multimedia system
 Optional extra for the GL 350 BlueTEC.
 Only available in conjunction with the optional COMAND Online multimedia system
 Part of the optional Lane Tracking package.
 Part of the optional Parking package.