New Mercedes GLB revealed as family-friendly compact SUV

Mercedes-Benz has revealed its new GLB compact SUV, which will rival the Audi Q3 and BMW X1 when it goes on sale in the UK later this year.

The new model is the eighth in the firm’s compact range, and unlike its direct class rivals will be offered in both five and seven-seat layouts. Mercedes says the machine has been designed to offer class-leading versatility to appeal more to family car buyers than the smaller GLA.

The production version of the new SUV, codenamed X247, retains the upright lines of the earlier Concept GLB revealed at the Shanghai motor show back in April, albeit without some of the rugged exterior styling elements.  

Based on Mercedes’s MFA II platform, the GLB features a McPherson strut front and multi-link rear suspension with optional adaptive damping. It measures 4634mm in length, 1834mm in width and 1658mm in height, making it 21mm longer, 56mm narrower and 20mm taller than the recently facelifted GLC. It has a wheelbase of 2829mm, which is 100mm longer than the B-Class MPV.

Further models, including AMG GLB35 4Matic and GLB45 variants, are due next year.

Also under development is a four-wheel-drive plug-in hybrid variant, featuring an electrified rear axle and a pure electric range that Mercedes-Benz sources tip to greatly exceed 31 miles. The GLB will also form the basis of a full electric EQB, due to arrive in 2021.

Pricing has yet to be set. UK-bound GLB models will be produced at a joint venture plant operated by Mercedes-Benz and the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance in Aguascaliente, Mexico. It will also be produced in China for that market.