Mercedes-Benz is planning a week for the history books. Wednesday, June 17, it will unveil the all-new GLC-class crossover designed to replace the aging GLK which was introduced in the U.S. back in 2010. As the preview sketch shows us, the new GLC ditches the boxy styling of its predecessor and gets a much more fluid design. Mercedes also promises a big boost in efficiency over the GLK.
Here’s what else we know so far. The GLC is expected to borrow heavily from the C-Class, both in design language and what’s under the hood. Entry-level models should get a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that delivers 241 horsepower and 229 pound-feet of torque. Pricier versions will likely get a twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 with 329 hp. Mercedes promises the C-sourced engines will make the GLC up to 19 percent more efficient than the GLK. Both engines will be bolted to a seven-speed automatic transmission, but no word yet on whether all-wheel drive will be standard or optional.
Automotive News also reports that the new GLC will have a longer wheelbase and wider track, giving it more interior room and making it more competitive with the BMW X3 and Audi Q5. Inside, it’s expected to be more upscale than the GLK as well and much of the technology will carry over from the C-class sedan. So we can likely expect Intelligent Drive and advanced infotainment and connectivity systems.
The new GLC has big shoes to fill. The GLK was hugely successful for Mercedes. The automaker sold more than 30,000 of them in 2013 and hit the 35,000 mark in 2014. With all the similarities to the C-Class, we wouldn’t be surprised if the GLC is built alongside it at Mercedes’ manufacturing plant in the U.S.
Mercedes will unveil the new GLC-Class online this week and it will make its first public debut at September’s Frankfurt Motor Show. It should land in showrooms as a 2016 model before the end of the year.