BY LARRY LEE
11 August 2019
This is the new Mercedes GLB: a small, FIRST family-friendly 7-seater SUV that fits into the Mercedes line-up between the smaller Mercedes GLA and larger Mercedes GLC. This means that the car should cost from below $175,000 for entry-level models based on current coe at $40,000, going up to more than $185,000 for the top-spec version.
The Mercedes GLB will be available to order now!!!
Mercedes GLB styling
The new GLB mixes the curves of the GLA and GLC with a chunkier look that gives more than a cursory nod to the chunky, straight-edged G-Class. With tiny overhangs and the wheels pushed right out to the corners of the body, the GLB should be well-suited to rough terrain, where its underbody protection will be a huge help.
The boxy theme of the GLB’s overall shape is carried through into the finer details, such as the hexagonal grille. However, it’s not all utilitarian cubes; you’ll spot styling flourishes that include sharp crease lines on the bonnet and splashes of chrome here and there.
Mercedes GLB engines
There are two petrol engines and two diesel engines to choose from in the GLB line-up. Petrol power comes in the form of the 1.4-litre, 163hp GLB200 and the 2.0-litre GLB250, with 224hp. These are both two-wheel-drive only. Diesel choices consist of the 150hp 200d and the 190hp 220d. The 200d can be specified with either two- or four-wheel drive, while the 220d is only available with four.
Mercedes GLB driving
The Mercedes GLB not only has the looks of an off-roader; it should also have the ability to go with it. If you get a four-wheel-drive version of the car, there will be an Offroad mode included, which will split the GLB’s power evenly between the front and rear wheels. You can also get what Mercedes calls the Offroad Engineering Package. This extra gives you hill-descent control – which brakes the car automatically as you go down steep inclines – and extra readouts on the infotainment screen.
If you want to keep your GLB firmly on the tarmac, however, some autonomous driving features will be available as optional extras. These include active cruise control and steering assistance. Combined, these features will enable the car to accelerate, brake and steer itself on the motorway, while also giving it the ability to automatically slow down for corners.
Mercedes GLB interior and infotainment
The interior of the GLB is based on the design found in the Mercede A-class and CLA-class. As such, the car gets the manufacturer’s MBUX infotainment setup, which conjoins the driver’s display and central infotainment as twinned screens on the dashboard. This system is voice-operated and also boasts an incredibly impressive augmented-reality satnav, which superimposes digital graphics over a live feed from a camera at the front of the car.
Despite their interiors sharing many similarities, the GLB has a wheelbase that’s 130mm longer than the Mercedes A-class. This means that rear-seat passengers can expect more legroom in the small SUV. Furthermore, the rear seats can recline for extra comfort, and can slide back and forth as an optional extra.
As standard, the GLB is a five-seater, although it is available with seven seats, too. Mercedes claims that the third row is ideal for people below 5’5” tall. Plus, both seats have ISOFIX mounting point, separate storage and their own USB plugs.
As a five-seater, the GLB has a 560-litre boot, upping to 1,755 litres if you fold the seats down.