Mercedes GL 'Black Crystal' by Larte Design, front three-quarter view.

You no longer have to go to Alaska to see Russia from your back yard; you can see Russia in your own driveway with the help of Larte Design. The Russian-based tuning firm specializing in SUVs has come to America, and the Mercedes GL-based Black Crystal no doubt revels in the role of first-assault vehicle.

The Black Crystal wears a new front grille and fascia cut up by angular intakes, LED DRLs with "crystal-shaped edges" and carbon fiber inserts. That face runs into a pair of wide fender flares, then a set of custom side skirts, on to a rear end fitted with a complex bumper that sports a Formula-One-style low-mounted brake light and a Remus exhaust in stainless steel and carbon fiber. The Black Crystal gets its stance from 22-inch forged alloy wheels wearing 11-inch-wide Michelins.

In European 3.0-liter V6 diesel guise, power output gets boosted courtesy of Germany's Wetterauer tuning from 258 horsepower and 457 pound-feet of torque to 290 hp and 508 lb-ft; US numbers should come close to that. If you prefer your crystals more stalwart than Swarovski, then enjoy reading the the press release below and perusing the high-res gallery above.
Show full PR text

European-Based Luxury Tuning Company Creates Bespoke Mercedes GL Dubbed "Black Crystal"

Moscow, Russia (June 9, 2014) -- Larte Design, a European luxury tuning company specializing in the personalization of premium SUVs, is making its first foray into the U.S. market with the introduction of a specially-tuned performance package for the 2014 Mercedes-Benz GL. The company is introducing its new package with "Black Crystal," a uniquely customized GL that serves as a perfect example of Larte's high design and advanced performance.

"Black Crystal" comes equipped with an aggressive body kit, attractive alloy wheels and a sonorous exhaust system. The Larte Design front bumper features crystalline accents, aggressive geometry and front guard that stretches over almost the entire height of the car. The front end also features striking LED daytime running lights, by German supplier Nolden, crystal shaped edges, exposed carbon-fiber inserts and a number of air inlets.

To further enhance the GL's muscular shape are Larte Design crafted front and rear end fender flares and side skirts. The sport design is further enhanced by elements such as a central Formula 1-type brake light. "Black Crystal" also sits on forged, alloy wheels in 11x22-inch, completing the aggressive look of the custom GL.

The custom SUV also comes equipped with a unique four-pipe stainless steel exhaust system designed by renowned exhaust manufacturer, Remus. The exhaust's complex shape – steel on the inside and carbon on the outside – echoes the high-quality craftsmanship that goes into each component of Larte's body kits. To make "Black Crystal" go fast, Wetterauer tuning company upgraded the V6 diesel engine, thanks to a chip, to 290 hp and 508 lb-ft of torque (for the European spec GL), compared to the stock GL coming in at 258 hp and 457 lb-ft of torque.

"Black Crystal" is the latest in a long lineup of offerings from Larte Design. The luxury tuning manufacturer also offers tuning kits geared to enhance other premium SUVs including the Infiniti QX60, QX70, and QX80 and the Range Rover Evoque. Each kit meets the highest technical standards and includes components from renowned manufacturers. Kits also come with attractively and aggressively designed alloy wheels that are equipped with high-end tires from technical partner Michelin.

U.S. customers interested in Larte's personalization options can learn more by visiting

About Larte Design:
Larte Design is a luxury tuning company specializing in the customization of Infiniti, Range Rover, and Mercedes-Benz SUVs. The company's tuning kit packages are designed to help auto aficionados express individuality and personal style to front bumpers, radiator grilles, and exhaust systems. For additional information about Larte Design, visit Like us on Facebook and follow us Twitter.