Launched just last year, the GLC-Class brings elegant styling, top-notch technology, and stunning cabin design to the world of compact luxury crossovers. With improved ride and handling, reduced wind noise, and more interior and cabin space, it's a serious contender against the likes of the Jaguar F-Pace, Audi Q5, BMW X3, and all other intermediate-sized luxury crossovers on the market.
Changes to the GLC-Class are few for 2017, though Benz has added some new options designed to further elevate the little crossover's status. There are a few new colours for 2017: Brilliant Blue, plus premium Designo Diamond White, Designo Hyacinth Red, and matte-effect Designo Citrine Brown Magno. At $5,200, it's the GLC's most expensive option, just behind the Designo Nappa Leather interior package, which is new this year as well. Another new premium addition for 2017 is the option of Benz's chi-chi Air Balance interior perfume system, first seen on the S-Class. The GLC is also available with a new AMG Night Package which adds an AMG sports body kit, 19-inch black-finish AMG alloy wheels, black exterior trim, and powered matte-finish roof rails.
Other premium amenities include an available stitched leatherette dashboard, heated steering wheel, ventilated front seats, head-up display, 360-degree parking camera emergency autonomous braking, lane-keeping assist, and online navigation with apps, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
The standard GLC 300 uses a turbocharged and directed 2.0-litre four-cylinder that produces 241 horsepower and 273 lb-ft of torque. It comes mated to a nine-speed automatic transmission and Benz's 4Matic all-wheel drive system.
Benz is also rejoining the diesel game to compete against BMW and Jaguar with the new GLC 300d. Despite the “300” name, this is not a new engine. GLK and E-Class owners will undoubtedly be familiar with the 2.1-litre turbodiesel; it was featured in the E and GLK 250 Bluetec models. At the time of publication, the GLC diesel's fuel economy figures have not been announced, but it is expected to best the GLK 250 Bluetec thanks to the GLC’s much-improved aerodynamics and lighter curb weight.
While Benz hadn't previously competed in the performance arena with the GLK, the 2017 GLC will be available in GLC 43 AMG form. Under the hood is a 362-horsepower twin-turbocharged V6 engine that develops 384 lb-ft of torque, which is enough grunt to push the GLC to 100 km/h in less than five seconds. On-road performance should be might brisk thanks to its relatively light curb weight, 9G-Tronic automatic transmission, and performance-biased all-wheel drive. The GLC AMG also gets an AMG-tuned sports air suspension, AMG front and rear valances, plus an enhanced cabin that is available with red-stitched interior trim, sports seats, and a flat-bottom steering wheel. Porsche Macan S, Jaguar F-Pace V6 S - you've been put on notice.
The GLC crossover will be joined by a brand-new GLC Coupe that's slated to arrive in early 2017. Conceptually similar to the GLE Coupe, it offers sportier styling and will be the first rival to BMW's X4. Expect it in GLC 300 and GLC 43 AMG trims.
This vehicle has not yet been reviewed