Mercedes-Benz unveiled its all-new 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLB, at the 2019 Shanghai Auto Show. The automaker is positioning it between the GLA and GLC and also hoping to capture more of that market with this addition. The production-bound version made its debut during an event held on June 10 in scenic Utah and is scheduled to land on American roads by the end of 2019.
The GLB-class offers buyers a classic SUV shape on a compact platform with something not often found at this level – the option for three-row, seven-passenger seating. The GLB is meant to give customers access to the great outdoors, room for family and friends, according to the German company. Along with the seven seats for the passengers, it offers all-wheel drive and a modern cabin.
Seven Seater Crossover
Okay, that’s a good point to start discussing the new GLB-Class. The GLB is the first compact vehicle from Mercedes-Benz to offer a third row of seats on request with two additional individual seats. The seats offer people up to a height of 1.68 meters a comfortable amount of space. The GLB’s wheelbase is 1.7-inches shorter than the GLC, but 5.1-inches longer than the GLA. This results that there is some truth to the seven-seat capabilities of the GLB.
The optional third row offers accommodations for two, with cup holders between the seats and USB power ports for phones or other devices. Additionally, the extensive safety equipment includes retractable head restraints, seat belts with belt tensioners, a side window airbag which also protects the passengers in the third row of seats. These can be used to attach up to four child seats in the rear.
With the rearmost seats folded, the people mover offers up to 62 cubic feet of cargo capacity. Second-row passengers also have the ability to move the seats at the front and rear to better accommodate people or things, with 38 inches of legroom available with the seats pushed back.
Up front, driver and passenger are greeted with an interior quite similar to the A-Class, but with a bit more headroom. In addition, the third-row seats also fold flat so as not to hinder cargo room.
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The GLB’s interior:
The interior is typical Mercedes-Benz. It comes with three round center vents, a widescreen cockpit to control the standard MBUX multimedia system, and an aluminum off-road tubular element in the lower section of the instrument panel. All this makes you feel like sitting inside a smaller G-Class.
A digital cockpit with a 7.0-inch instrument screen and a 7.0-inch center touchscreen display dominate the dash including Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Take a seat behind the wheel, and you’ll notice the dashboard is dominated by an extra-wide, high-resolution screen that replaces the instrument cluster and the infotainment system’s display.
The left side of it shows the driver key information about the car and its surroundings, like the speed and navigation directions. The right side of it displays the cutting-edge, customizable MBUX infotainment system that’s gradually spreading across the Mercedes portfolio.
The voice recognition technology also lets users change the music, access their agenda, and make phone calls, among other functions.
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Engine and Speed:
The 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLB is powered by the M260 motor. It is a turbocharged, 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine tuned to send 221 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque and will be available in front-wheels and four-wheel variants.
The engine block is made from die-cast aluminum to reduce weight and the cylinder liners are constructed from cast-iron for better durability. The peculiar conical shape in the lower end of the engine block minimizes friction and delivers better fuel economy. Standing on 18-inch alloy wheels, the GLB has a refined go-anywhere attitude thanks two muscular shoulders and shorter front and overhang.
The GLB is not a sports car, but the engine is torquey enough to move the compact SUV from 0 to 60 mph in 6.9-seconds. According to the company, it is good for a top speed of 130 mph. The engine is connected to an 8-speed automatic and rear-wheel drive to deliver better highway mileage, while the 4MATIC AWD system is optional.
Optional packages include blind spot assist, navigation, parking assist, larger 10.25-inch displays, an upgraded Burmester surround system, heads-up display, and much more. Plus, while in off-road mode, the LED lights on the vehicle will widen to show more of the road and countryside.
Moreover, the new 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLB’s unique doors can reach over the sidebar and open wider than conventional doors. This kind of design also prevents dirt and debris from accumulating on the door openings. Other features include power driver and passenger seats, fog lights, keyless start, a rearview camera, dual-zone climate control, cruise control, and a power liftgate.
At launch, Mercedes-Benz will offer two models – the GLB 250 and GLB 250 4MATIC. It will be available in US showrooms in late 2019. Pricing will be revealed closer to the GLB’s on-sale date, which in the U.S. will come by the end of 2019.