Meet the GLB: Mercedes-Benz's most important new car
Mercedes has been going crazy with small cars recently, with the new A-Class, CLA and B-Class all being revealed in swift succession. The GLB is the eighth member of Mercedes' small car family and will go on sale later this year in the UK, with a choice of five or seven seats. Think of the GLB as a more practical and versatile version of the old GLA.
If you cast your mind back a few weeks, Mercedes gave the world a preview of the production version of the GLB, with the Concept GLB which was shown off at the Shanghai Motor Show in April. It looked great, and thankfully Mercedes has kept the concept car looks in the production GLB.
Under the skin
The GLB is built on Mercedes' MFA II platform, which means it has McPherson front strut suspension and multi-link rear suspension, with the option of adaptive damping to ensure a smooth and comfy ride. The GLB is averagely sized for its class, with a length of 4.6 metres and a width of 1.8 metres. It's also quite tall too, coming in at 1.65 metres. Basically, it's a bit blocky, which will hopefully give it decent interior space. Speaking of which…
It's a small seven seater!
As previously mentioned, the GLB will be available with five or seven seats which makes it stands out when you compare it to its main rivals, the BMW X1 and Audi Q3. The GLB makes use of its interior space though – the boot is about 10% larger than the X1 and 20% larger than the Q3. That may not sound that interesting to you and me, but this is important information for families and people who are into various lifestyle activities.
The interior looks just as nice as the outside, which was perhaps a given seeing as it shares many parts with the latest A-Class, which includes the excellent MBUX infotainment interface.
Mercedes GLB engines
Don't get too excited by the initial engine line-up though. Two petrol models will be offered, along with one diesel which will be offered in two states of tune. How much power, I hear you say. Well, the GLB200 is powered by a 1.3-litre turbocharged petrol producing 163bhp and the GLB250 is powered by a 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol producing 224bhp. Average economy figures are between 38-47mpg and CO2 emissions are between 137-169g/km.
The diesel models are about as uninspiring as the petrol models. The GLB200d and GLB220d 4Matic share the same 2.0-litre turbodiesel engine, but the GLB200d has 150bhp and the GLB220d has 190bhp. Economy is between 51-58mpg and CO2 is between 129-146g/km CO2.
You do get the choice of either front or all-wheel-drive, but keep in mind you can only get all-wheel drive on the GLB250, GLB200d and GLB220d. All GLB's will be offered with an automatic gearbox, with the GLB200 getting a seven-speed 'box, while the rest of the line up will get an eight-speed 'box.
However, if these engine choices don't tickle your fancy, there will be AMG versions in the very near future, with the GLB35 AMG, GLB45 AMG and the GLB45 AMG S. What if you're trying to be more eco-friendly though? Well, an all-wheel drive plug-in hybrid version and a fully electric EQB should be on sale by 2021.
Mercedes GLB prices
Yes, the GLB isn't the most interesting new car to come out this year but remember that this is a normal car for normal people. If you want one, the GLB will launch in the UK in the latter half of 2019. Pricing hasn't been announced yet, but expect it to start at about £30,000-32,000 which will be aimed directly at its key rivals.