Mercedes-Benz has divulged pricing and specifications for its second compact SUV, the GLB, ahead of the start of its staggered Australian launch later this month.
Despite being billed as a small SUV – which shares its front-drive-based underpinnings with the smaller GLA crossover – the GLB is just 21mm shorter and 56mm narrower than the mid-size GLC. The extra length over its class peers grants it the space for a third row of seats – unique to the segment – capable of carrying passengers up to 168cm tall.
Opening the three-strong Australian GLB range is the GLB 200, priced from $59,900 plus on-road costs.
Under the bonnet is the same 1.3-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine as 200-badged A-Class and CLA models, sending 120kW of power and 250Nm of torque to the front wheels through a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.
All GLB variants benefit from Mercedes’ MBUX infotainment system as standard, consisting of dual 10.25-inch digital displays with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and satellite navigation.
The standard safety suite from the entry-level model up is equally as plentiful, consisting of autonomous emergency braking, lane-keeping assist, blind-spot monitoring, traffic sign recognition, high beam assist and automatic park assist.
Further standard kit on offer to GLB 200 buyers includes 19-inch alloy wheels, keyless entry, push-button start, Artico faux leather upholstery, multi-zone climate control, leather-wrapped steering wheel, electrically-operated tailgate and rain-sensing wipers.
Stepping up to the mid-grade GLB 250 4Matic – priced from $73,900 plus on-road costs – nets buyers a panoramic sunroof, power-adjustable and heated front seats, adaptive dampers, variable sports steering, 19-inch twin-arm alloy wheels and the ‘Off-Road Engineering Package’, which includes hill-descent control and specific off-road driving modes for motoring off the beaten track.
The $14,000 premium the 250 commands over the GLB 200 also includes a powertrain upgrade under the bonnet. Power comes from a 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine producing 165kW and 350Nm – it’s sent to all four wheels through an eight-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox.
Sitting at the top of the range is the performance-oriented Mercedes-AMG GLB 35 4Matic, priced from $88,900 before on-road costs.
Under the bonnet is a derivative of the 250’s 2.0-litre turbo, now tuned to develop a Mini Countryman JCW-rivalling 225kW of power and 400Nm of torque. Drive is sent to all wheels through the same eight-speed dual-clutch auto.
Backing up the extra grunt is a raft of performance components, including a variable sports exhaust, adaptive ‘AMG Ride Control’ sports suspension, variable-ratio, AMG-tuned sports steering, and 350mm front and 330mm rear performance brakes.
Other GLB 35-exclusive features include an AMG-branded, flat-bottomed sports steering wheel wrapped in Nappa leather, Lugano leather-trimmed sports seats, stainless steel pedals, carbon-fibre-look interior trim inlays, privacy glass and Mercedes-Benz’s ‘Energising Comfort Control’ software system.
There’s also a revised AMG exterior styling package, consisting of 20-inch alloy wheels, ‘Panamericana’ front grille, black roof rails, unique front and rear bumpers and the standard-for-Australia ‘AMG Night Package’.
The Mercedes-Benz GLB 200 and GLB 250 4Matic touch down in Australia first later this month, with the AMG GLB 35 to lob Down Under later this year.
2020 Mercedes-Benz GLB pricing
- GLB 200: $59,900
- GLB 250 4Matic: $73,900
- AMG GLB 35 4Matic: $88,900
All prices exclude on-road costs.