Reports of a new “lifestyle” vehicle from Mercedes have surfaced last month, but at the time, we knew only its name, the GLB, and the fact that it was going to be a compact crossover. We now also know that the German automaker plans to start producing these cars in 2019, which means that they are in development.
The Mercedes-Benz GLB-Class lineup is essentially an addition to the already existing G-Class, which has been around since 1979. The SUVs are still as boxy as they have been for the last thirty years, so the new crossover should provide a bit of a jolt to the arguably tired lineup. The GLB will share the same proportions as the B-Class, while its dynamics will be based on the GLA-Class. Mercedes’ original plan was to build the crossover on the same modular small-car platform as Renault-Nissan, but it seems that a second-generation modular front-wheel-drive platform known as the MFA2 is a far more likely candidate. The GLB will be able to seat seven passengers, while being available either in front-wheel or 4MATIC all-wheel drive.
Under the hood, the GLB will provide a selection of either a three-cylinder engine from Renault, a 2.0-litre diesel at 204 horsepower or a turbocharged 2.0-litre gasoline powertrain at 272 horsepower. The high-end GLB45 AMG version will come with a twin-turbo 380-horsepower unit for those who want more power.