the jig

The jig is up (and down)

Cars are getting cleverer, there’s no doubt about it.

Take the new Mercedes-Benz GLE and it’s E-ACTIVE Body Control system, that literally has the SUV dancing a jig.

A development of the ABC system that underpins the flagship S-Class, it is a fully active suspension that enables total control of spring and damping settings for each individual wheel.

In effect it means each of the wheels can be moved up or down independently at the touch of a button, paving the way for the SUV to dig or jig it’s way out of trouble.

Benz claims the system also reduces body roll to near zero when cornering.

A camera watches the road surface and tells the E-ACTIVE system when it needs to makes changes, a process which takes place in a split second.

A new off-road mode called free-driving will allow specific wheel changes to be made from inside the car, via the touchscreen.

This could have significant advantages in extremely rough terrain when one wheel becomes airborne or the springs are fully compressed.

Then few GLE owners are ever likely to take their cars off road.

The E-ACTIVE system and other electronics must require a bit of juice because the GLE runs a 48 volt operating system.

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