2019 Mercedes GLC review with video

The basics:
Base price: $47,300 + tax
As tested: $64,175 + tax
Average fuel economy over week: 10.4 L/100 kms (23 US MPG)
Competitors: Acura RDX, Audi Q5, BMW X3, Volvo XC60, etc.

The GLC has become a real staple for Mercedes, despite having only been in the company’s line-up for for a few years. It was brought into the mix to replace the GLK back in 2016 and it lines up with the size, amenities and design language that you’re going to find in the C-Class sedan. Now, we’ve seen a fair bit of change in this segment this year. Three of its biggest rivals, the Audi Q5, the BMW X3 and the Acura RDX have all put on some pretty sharp new duds – with total redesigns. So check out the video above for our take on what makes the GLC stand-out from that well-dressed pack. And thanks to Lone Star Mercedes in Calgary for setting us up in our test vehicle this week.

Pros:
– One thing that I’ve always thought made Mercedes cars stand out is that they’ve got a very mature, classic look to them… while BMW, Audi, Volvo have been a bit more playful and modern in recent years. And at times, I’ve found Mercedes cars a little stuffy, a little boring as a result. But this latest generation from the company is holding onto that classic style while still cutting a really handsome, eye-catching figure. The GLC looks planted yet sporty.
– It also feels very high end. Even just closing the doors gives you a satisfying, confidence-inspiring thunk. Climb inside and it’s the same story with great attention to detail. The materials and switchwear all feel high end
– And that solid feeling is not just for show either. It’s also earned a top safety pick plus nod from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety
– Now, this GLC 300 is using an engine size that’s become very popular over the last few years right across the industry, a two litre 4-cylinder turbo. That means it’s fairly light and efficient when you’re behaving yourself but it can still tow up to 3,500 pounds and has the chutzpah to kick it up a notch for passing someone or just having a bit of fun
– And while I wouldn’t call the driving experience in the base GLC 300 exhilarating like we’d see in the more performance-oriented AMG versions of this car, it is very smooth. The 9 speed automatic transmission carries you through gears with imperceptible shifts and the ride is comfortable with steering and suspension that adapts to the sort of road you’re driving on
– We’re also averaging a very quiet 60 dB at 100 kms/hr with our decibel reader this week
– And while some may grumble about the seats being made from what Mercedes calls MB Tex (it’s a faux leather product), I really like it. It’s convincing as the real deal – most people would never know. It’s tougher than leather. It doesn’t take the same care as leather. And it’s a greener product to make
– Jump into the back seat and the GLC is plenty roomy for adults. Seating for three would be a tricky business though – with a hump on the floor in the middle position
– A few things I love about the GLC trunk. 1. The lockable storage bin under the trunk is a vacuous compartment that’s big enough to hold those pesky tonneau covers when you don’t need them. 2. If you’re after more room, the second row flips down with the push of a button, leaving you a really usable, flat cargo area. 3. If you just need to carry something long and skinny, like skis, there’s a centre pass-through

Cons:
– Getting into a GLC in Canada will set you back at least $47,300 – which is slightly cheaper than the X3 and a few grand more than the starting price for the Q5 – but our test vehicle comes in nearly $20,000 more than the base price because of all the extras. And some of those extras really seem like they should be standard in this price bracket – a sunroof, navigation, power tailgate, satellite radio, heated rear seats and a heated steering wheel just to name a few
– 10.4 L/100 kms (that’s 23 US MPG) puts it right on par with our test of the new, much sportier Volvo XC60 T6 or the 2019 Acura RDX. And we saw better numbers out of the Audi Q5, despite that car feeling just a little more eager
– I found the infotainment system a little flat footed this week. There’s no Android Auto or Apple CarPlay available in the GLC at all. And it’s controlled through either a rotating click wheel or a touch pad, which is perched on top of that click wheel. Having both systems feels a little redundant and neither are particularly intuitive
– Rear facing car seats are a tight fit. We measured 26.5 inches from the back of the front passenger seat to the glovebox. That’s going to be tight and falls well behind that new Acura RDX, which really impressed us on that front
– Back in the trunk, the optional automatic tailgate does take its sweet time getting up – around 7 seconds! But once it’s out of the way, you’re looking at a fairly typical 550 litres of space – that puts it right on par with the Q5 or the Jaguar F-Pace but falls about 250 litres behind the BMW or Acura… space that goes a long way in this class

Family Wheels report card:
Family Wheels driver comfort score: 4.5/5
Family Wheels interior layout score: 3.5/5
Family Wheels infotainment system score: 3/5
Family Wheels interior noise score: 5/5 (60 dB at 100 kms/h)
Family Wheels performance score: 3.5/5
Family Wheels rear passenger score: 3.5/5
Family Wheels trunk score: 4/5
Family Wheels fuel economy score: 3.5/5
Family Wheels build quality score: 4.5/5
Family Wheels value score: 3/5

Family Wheels overall score: 38/50= 76%

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