The 2016 Mercedes-Benz GLC range has been unveiled to assume the position between the existing GLA and M-Class.
BMW X3’s-rival GLC is part of Mercedes’ ‘Year of the SUV’ campaign, which will see new products like the GLE (M-Class facelift), GLE Coupe and the upcoming GLS. And is the long-awaited successor to the GLK, that we never knew because it was only ever made in left-hand drive and was not on-sale in India. But with global demand for SUVs on the rise, making the new GLC in both left- and right-hand drive is a smart choice.
Like the S-Class, E-Class, C-Class, CLA and GLA models before it, the GLC range gets the familiar design language with a twin-slat chrome grille flanked by LED headlamps with LED DRLs, large air inlets in the lower fascia, a strong character line across the side profile and is further reinforced by the gently sloping dropping line which is a hallmark of the brand. The rear gets a split LED rear lamp and a dual exhaust system.
On the inside, the Mercedes GLC boasts of a stylish new design and use of quality material that reflects the smaller C-Class sedan. Featuring a choice of two 3-spoke steering designs, a panoramic glass roof and carbon fiber, wood or aluminium trim options, customers can also opt for upholstery in fabric, Artico Dinamica, leather or Nappa leather. The Mercedes’ COMAND infotainment software running on a free-standing display with a Touchpad and options of a 17.8 cm (7-inch) or 21.3 cm (8.4 inches) colour media display.
Engine options should be close to a mirror of the C-Class – diesel-lovers will get a GLC 220d (2.1L, 170 hp, 400 Nm) or a GLC 250d (2.1L, 204 hp, 500 Nm). There’re also choices like the GLC 250 (2.0L, 211 hp, 350 Nm) and GLC 300 (2.0L, 241 hp, 370 Nm) for countries where petrol power is preferred. All variants get a nine-speed 9G-Tronic automatic transmission except for a GLC 350 e 4MATIC hybrid, which soldiers on with a hybrid-specific the older 7G-TRONIC Plus from the C-Class. It will be equipped with a 4MATIC AWD system as standard at launch.
The GLC is the first-in-the-segment to offer the option of fitting the chassis with a full-support multi-chamber air suspension system and the electronically controlled, continuously adjustable adaptive damping system ADS Plus. Further benefits of AIR BODY CONTROL include reduced rolling during cornering, automatic level control and lowering of the load compartment sill for convenient loading and unloading.
After the unveiling of the Mercedes GLC at the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show, the sales are set to commence in the European markets. As the GLC is also developed in Right-Hand-Drive version, the India launch is confirmed for sometime next-year and it will be the part of the Mercedes India’s localization portfolio for competitive pricing.
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GALLERY: 2016 Mercedes-Benz GLC