Now, since this is a facelifted model let’s take the reverse route to find out what’s new inside out of the new GLC. If you have been following the brand, one look and you can notice the change in the headlamp cluster. Much like the C-Class sedan, the SUV gets a horizontal array of LED lamps in place of the projector beams.
That big chrome grille representing the Mere family is well in place, yet what has changed a bit is the shape of the headlamps. The structure tends to broaden towards the sides, making the car look bolder.
The 19-inch alloys with 15-spoke layout are a delight to the eyes. The solidly built step on the sides reflects and aggressive stance. But what really sets the GLC apart for me is the lower body at both front and rear. For example, the revised bumper, diffuser and exhaust tips compliment the bulky design, and the uncluttered tailgate gets the logo and names embossed.
Inside the cabin, there are a few new things to look forward to starting with the new display.
“Hi Mercedes! What’s the temperature outside. … please set the temperature to 20 degrees.” Your personal voice assistant jumps to action, and the command is enforced in less than 10 seconds. The single biggest change in the 2020 facelift is the introduction of Mercedes Me with the new 10.25-inch infotainment system. It’s vibrant and snazzy, intuitive yet lacks gesture control.
That said, ‘Mercedes me’ can do a lot to amaze you. Sit at home, and still you can lock or unlock your GLC, which is parked at the office, check the car’s health, and monitor other parameters through the App. The 10-25-inch infotainment is beautifully laid, but again lacks apple connectivity.
In terms of equipment, GLC gets a sunroof, Burmeister audio system, Haptic Touch buttons on the new steering unit, MBUX operating system, wireless charging facility and a few more. You would find multiple USB ports in nook and corner, however, you would require converters to use them. The design of the dashboard looks rich and premium with walnut wood and brushed aluminum inserts. The polish wooden gradient trickles down to the centre console with key switches implants on it to access key car controls. The multifunction touchpad on the centre console allows you to access those without taking your eyes off the road.
The interior is spaces, thanks to large window outlets, there is a sense of airiness inside. The room on offer is ideal for 4 grown-ups. The back seat recline and thigh support are encouraging to make the long-distance a breeze. The cabin is plush, well-appointed and leaves very little to complain about.
The engines of the GLC have been rejigged to quite an extent. The petrol has been detuned from GLC 300 to GLC 200, along with a switch from AWD to RWD. This isn’t a bad thing actually. The petrol is equally fun to drive as the 4WD diesel. The good part is that the company was able to trim up to Rs 5 lakh on the petrol variant.
The 4-cylinder, 220d is the one to get the 4-wheel drive. The engine puts out 194 horses and 400 Nm. The engine is refined and torquey with a burst of pulling power past 2,000 rpm. The in-house 9-speed gearbox performs the transmission duties. GLC, for the first time, gets Active Brake Assist.
The new diesel motor, which replaces a bigger capacity engine, puts out 24 PS more power and is obviously more cleaner. The GLC clocked 8.5 seconds in 0-100 kmph sprint, almost matching Merc’s claims. In terms of efficiency, the diesel mill pulls off 15 kmph regularly. Switch to eco mode, the number climbs a couple of digits.
In terms of the ride quality, GLC has a lot of weight on its shoulder. With no adaptive suspensions in place, the bulky GLC offers a plush and grounded feel. The highway cruising ability of GLC is fantastic and the nicely weighed steering wheel ensures the driver is less fatigues in long distances.
BMW X3, X4, Audi Q5, Volvo XC60 and a few others compete in this segment. But Mercedes-Benz GLC is the distant winner. The diesel 220d is priced just under Rs 58 lakh while the petrol is a big gainer as it receives a price cut of almost Rs 5 lakh and now comes at just over Rs 52.5 lakh (ex-showroom). Isn’t it the most practical Merc here?