When it comes to SUVs, much has changed since Mercedes first entered the field in 1997 with the M-Class.
A broader line-up of SUVs means such cars account for 49 percent of all Mercedes sold worldwide in 2021. The company has been transformed by these vehicles, and the medium-sized GLC is a big part of that transformation.
The next generation of this modern Mercedes Hallmark will be released this summer before the sale in September, and we’ve already made the passenger journey. The new version of Merc’s big-selling GLC is ready to get a lot of modernization.
It moved to the new MRA2 platform used by the latest C-Class and inherited a similar list of compact executive saloon technology. The packaging has been improved, there is more legroom in the back, while the practicality has also increased, the boot capacity is 50 liters bigger than before, generous 600 liters.
Electrification is another area of improvement, and a plug-in hybrid model that uses larger batteries than before will be offered at 23kWh. It will be able to run about 62 miles pure-electric and provide tax-busting benefit-in-kind rates for company vehicles.
The first to arrive, though, will be a 48-volt light-hybrid petrol and diesel engine. The latter is a powered car that we have tried alongside test driver Peter Colb, and the integration of 48-volt technology has greatly improved refinement. The engine shuts off and the shoreline stays smooth, while noise isolation keeps you away from diesel knocking thanks to excellent, new foam, insulation and double glazing.
The new GLC is longer than the last car, but our first idea is an SUV that is completely sportier and more agile. In Sport mode, it feels much more composed, cornered, flattened and more controlled than the current car.
In fact, the main goal of the new GLC is to increase the stability for chassis engineers, and to that end it has been integrated with an important item of technology found in the new S-Class and C-Class: rear wheel steering.
The rear axle can rotate up to 4.5 degrees. At higher speeds the wheels rotate in the same way as the front for greater stability, while at lower speeds things go in the opposite direction.
This means that the new GLC has turned into a slow corner with sharp feedback, but it will make the SUV more maneuverable around the city, thanks to a low rotation circle of only 10.8 meters.
|Model:||Mercedes GLC 300 d 4MATIC|
|Engine:||2.0-liter 4cyl turbodiesel|
|Power / Torque:||261bhp / 550Nm|
|Infection:||Nine-speed automatic, four-wheel drive|
|0-62mph:||N / A|
|Top speed:||N / A|
|Economy / CO2:||N / A|