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  • 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLC300 4Matic Coupe

    Posted on June 28th, 2017 ninarussin

    Midsize crossover melds style, performance and versatility

    By Nina Russin

    2017 Mercedes-Benz GLC300

    2017 Mercedes-Benz GLC300

    Mercedes-Benz calls the GLC300 a coupe, but it’s essentially a crossover with two doors, characterized by a higher ride height and more versatile interior. The GLC replaced the GLK in the automaker’s line-up in 2015: a larger vehicle with more room on the inside and dramatically different styling on the exterior.

    The 2017 model is essentially carry-over except for a new exterior color- Brilliant Blue metallic- and available saddle brown leather interior. The new exterior finish is a $720 option while the saddle brown leather is no cost.

    Base price for the mid-size GLC300 is $45,950 excluding the $925 destination charge. Power comes from a two-liter 241-horsepower turbocharged engine and nine-speed automatic transmission. The test car is equipped with all-wheel drive, eco start/stop and low rolling resistance tires, boosting the car’s highway fuel economy to 27 miles-per-gallon.

    Options on the test car include heated and ventilated front seats, air suspension, premium audio system, 20-inch alloy rims, navigation, satellite radio, real-time traffic and weather updates, ambient lighting, autonomous braking with pedestrian detection, blind spot monitoring, blind spot monitoring, lane keeping assist, active LED headlamps, leather seating, AMG sport package and active parking assist. Final MSRP is $64,185.

    Test drive in Southern Arizona

    2017 Mercedes-Benz GLC300

    2017 Mercedes-Benz GLC300

    This week I put the GLC300 through the acid test, with temperatures in Phoenix reaching record highs, high afternoon winds and as-a-result, a town full of very cranky, erratic drivers. Although logic would dictate slowing down in 120-degree heat to reduce the likelihood of a collision, drivers in Phoenix tend to do the opposite, weaving through traffic at warp speed. Any driver with his windows open (meaning no air conditioning) is likely no longer is his right mind.

    On multiple occasions, the car’s blind spot monitoring system saved me from an unpleasant encounter by illuminating an LED signal in the side mirror when a heat-crazed driver bounced across several lanes.

    This is what Mercedes-Benz does best: combining top notch performance with unparalleled safety. The GLC combines the road manners of a sport coupe with the versatility of a crossover and 360-degree protection against whatever insanity we might be sharing the roads with. The car can be a bit of a challenge to park due to its wide track, but aside from that, it’s the perfect urban warrior in a very stylish package.

    2017 Mercedes-Benz GLC300

    2017 Mercedes-Benz GLC300

    When Mercedes-Benz engineers describe the four-cylinder engine as having the pep of a V-6, they’re right. With 273 pound-feet of peak torque, the GLC is a demon off the line and in the 20-to-50 mile-per-hour range drivers use merging into high-speed traffic.

    The nine-speed automatic transmission is crisp and precise. It doesn’t hunt as some competitive units do. Although the driver can use paddles on the steering wheel to choose his gears, the gearbox does a perfectly respectable job of anticipating his every move in fully automatic mode.

    The automaker is known for exceptional steering feedback and the GLC is no exception, with excellent on-center response and ample assist for maneuverability at lower speeds. The optional air suspension system can make real-time adjustments to account for changes in driving styles and road surface. Large disc brakes front and rear provide plenty of stopping power.

    2017 Mercedes-Benz GLC300

    2017 Mercedes-Benz GLC300

    The model’s standard rearview camera is augmented with an overhead view camera on the test car. While it is not absolutely-necessary, this writer would highly recommend it, due to the car’s extremely small rear glass. I’m not quite sure about the logic behind making a rear window so small since it creates huge blind spots around the rear pillars and makes the back of the car dark. The rear glass is one of the GLC’s very few flaws.

    Engineers did an excellent job of isolating vehicle occupants from wind, engine and road noise so both rows of passengers can converse on the highway or enjoy the premium audio system.

    Versatile interior

    Mercedes-Benz GLC300 Interior

    Mercedes-Benz GLC300 Interior

    With its extended cargo bay and fold-flat rear seats, the Mercedes-Benz GLC easily meets our bicycle friendly standards. Lift-over height for the rear cargo area is high: something that might be a challenge for smaller adults who want to load in large cargo.

    Keyless entry and start saves the driver for fumbling for the key fob after dark. When the driver locks the car side mirrors fold flat to avoid parking lot incidents.

    I found the power driver’s seat easy to adjust with plenty of lower lumbar support. The optional ventilated seats make leather much more comfortable during the extreme heat this area sees in the summer.

    Mercedes-Benz has made quantum improvements to its infotainment and climate controls over the past decade. Gone are instrument panels loaded with buttons, replaced with easy-to-reach computer type mouse controls. The controls are also much easier to figure out.

    Occupants will find plenty of 12-volt power outlets and USB ports for plugging in and recharging electronic devices. A 115-volt outlet that comes with the premium option package enables owners to use the GLC as a mobile office, making down-time during rush-hour more productive.

    Standard safety

    The Mercedes-Benz GLC300 comes with six airbags, antilock brakes, stability control, traction control, rearview camera, light-sensing headlamps, LED daytime running lamps, trailer stabilization, Pre-Safe with pedestrian detection and tire pressure monitoring.

    Mercedes-Benz builds the GLC at its Bremen, Germany assembly plant.

    Like: A versatile crossover with outstanding ride and handling, good fuel economy, all-wheel drive and a versatile interior.

    Dislike: Small rear window limits visibility and makes the back of the car dark. High load floor makes it more difficult to load up large cargo.

    Quick facts:

    Make: Mercedes-Benz
    Model: GLC300 4Matic Coupe
    Year: 2017
    Base price: $45,900
    As tested: $64,185
    Horsepower: 241 HP @ 5500 rpm
    Torque: 273 lbs.-ft. @ 1300 rpm
    Zero-to-sixty: 6.4 seconds
    Antilock brakes: Standard
    Side curtain airbags: Standard
    First aid kit: N/A
    Bicycle friendly: Yes
    Towing: No
    Off-road: No
    Fuel economy: 22/27 mpg city/highway

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