Auto123 testimonials the 2021 Mercedes-AMG GLB 35.
When I initially drove the Mercedes-Benz GLB in GLB 250 sort, I was impressed with Mercedes’ most up-to-date entry into the modest crossover market.
I favored its boxy styling that reminds of a Scion xB — actually a fantastic issue even if you’re speaking about a Mercedes – and its astonishingly roomy inside, not to mention the pure hilarity that there was actually a 3-row option. A 3-row luxury subcompact crossover? Who’s to say the Germans don’t have a perception of humour?
The 1 issue I felt was lacking was a small extra selection when it came to trim choice. All we experienced to select from in Canada was the GLB 250, this though the GLB’s GLC sibling was readily available as a GLC three hundred, forty three or 63 S and as possibly a four-door-coupe or wagon. I experienced a ton of enjoyment in the GLB 250, but what if it experienced just a small extra energy? Now that would be something…
Effectively, talk to and you shall obtain. It wasn’t extended just after I drove the GLB late previous year that the automaker came out with the GLB 35 AMG. It has extra energy, some incredibly neat styling touches and some chassis tuning as properly. Could this be the best formula?
Effectively, sitting down in the GLB 35 you get the exact feeling you did in the 250. Meaning that even though the seats are a little bit extra intense in design and style, you however get a good deal of headroom and a wonderful check out out forwards, rearwards and above the shoulders – big side home windows will do that. But now there is this wonderful, chunky leather-based-trimmed steering wheel in your palms, full with two AMG-precise travel mode and chassis/powertrain adjustment handle pads attached to it at the 4- and seven o’clock positions.
Of study course, you also get that wonderful fully digitized sprint that helps make use of crisp flatscreen displays for your infotainment and gauge cluster, as properly as a principal trackpad and small thumb pads on the still left and suitable wheel spokes (optional) to handle it all. I produced small use of the latter when I sampled them for the initially time in a Mercedes, but now that I’ve expended time with them in a handful of styles, I use them pretty much completely.
The still left-hand pad can help you navigate the gauge cluster (which can be improved to 3 various kinds) and heads-up show, though the suitable-hand pad moves you by the menus on the infotainment show. Which, as it transpires, will get its possess established of “themes” that perform primarily independent of the gauge cluster and will actually modify the ambient lighting, automatically switch on your tunes (that transpires in the “Lounge” location) or automatically show your AMG general performance knowledge.
This is 1 heck of a slick inside that does properly to provide on the luxury promised by the badge on the snout.
Talking of the GLB’s snout: if that big brand and grille – as properly as the headlamps possibly side of it – reminds you of some thing, it is in all probability the bigger GLS. Which helps make perception when you consider the relaxation of the GLB’s detailing and shape, as it all displays its bigger sibling. The GLB is to the GLS as the GLC is to the GLE.
And you know what? I appreciate it. It has that wonderful profile, a neat stance and the fancy wheels, big front splitter, “Denim” blue paintwork, rear diffuser and twin potato cannon-fashion exhaust and it all comes collectively to sort what is 1 of the coolest-wanting Mercedes products we’ve lately witnessed, this side of the sporting activities automobiles and roadsters.
Again inside of
The model’s proportions are suitable on and much better than that, it contributes to delivering an inside which is a lot roomier than the compact styling suggests. Specially in conditions of headroom both equally front and rear, which, even with the big sunroof it has, is generous plenty of even for taller folks…wearing cowboy hats. It’s that fantastic.
There are a couple of sacrifices that experienced to be produced, though the rear seats are incredibly flat – that helps make it much easier to fold the seatbacks – and that design and style signifies that they are not that supportive. Rear-seat travellers will slide to and fro by the turns, and you come to feel a lot extra like you’re sitting down atop the seats rather of within them.
Talking of the third row: properly, my tester didn’t have 1 so I can’t comment, but thinking of the GLB’s footprint, I wouldn’t assume a substantial volume of home and I’d in all probability favor to conserve the $1,three hundred essential to healthy it, especially thinking of you’re tricky-pressed to get a GLB 35 for a lot less than 60 grand out the door. Not to mention that when the third row is up, the home still left to pack stuff in the back is very likely no more substantial than a shelf’s width. Which type of sabotages the other energy of the GLB’s inside, and which is its cargo area which actions up to 1,680 litres if you fold the next row of seating. It’s all obtainable through a tailgate that opens so significant that me and my 6’3” body could get less than devoid of hardly getting to duck.
In addition to the price tag, of study course, the third row basically is not in preserving with what this AMG 35 variation is all about. This is mainly a significant-general performance scorching hatchback with airs that remind me extra of a Volkswagen Golfing R than a luxury crossover. That signifies I’m in all probability not going to anxiety also a lot if I can’t go seven individuals on the normal.
In fact, I’d a lot extra favor to know that when it comes time to strike my favourite flexible b-road, the GLB 35 is up for it. And boy, is it ever.
Power from the turbo 4-cylinder is rated at 302 hp and 295 lb-ft of torque, which is up from 221 hp and 259 ft-lb on the GLB 250.
It feels a full ton more quickly than the numbers propose, though. Peak torque comes at 3,000 RPM and peak horsepower a few of grand just after that, which signifies the eight-pace twin clutch transmission has no trouble channeling all that energy and sending it to the sticky Continental SportContact six tires (measuring a body fat 255 mm at the back).
Then, it is just issue of keeping on as the GLB 35 races forth with gumption and a ferocity that you don’t get from that numerous modest crossovers. In fact, even the V8-run GLC 63 – though a lot quicker, of course – doesn’t come to feel quite as nervy, due to the fact it is heavier than this. This turbo 4-cylinder is a wonderful match for the GLB.
Of study course, the GLB’s lighter fat signifies that its perspective by turns is incredibly fantastic as properly, especially if you regulate the damper configurations. That can be done a number of means — my favored system was to make use of the wheel-mounted controls – and when established to the intense Sport location, system roll is retained nicely in-check and the GLB moves by the turns just as properly as it does less than fast acceleration.
You get incredibly small inertia and incredibly small delay in response from driver inputs rather you get a full ton of enjoyment. A full ton of sounds, also, due to the fact individuals big tailpipes are not just for demonstrate. They emit a thoroughly authoritative report that performs properly with the considerably hooligan-like seems to be.
One real litmus test for a auto is how tricky it is to give it back at the finish of a 7 days of screening-driving it In this article, let me inform you, it was tricky – perhaps even more difficult than it’d been for other extra pricey automobiles I’ve examined above the years. When I experienced requested for it just after driving the 250, I don’t consider I could have predicted just how a lot fantastic the AMG treatment method would do the GLB. It’s a stunner this. A stunner without a doubt.
Excellent powertrain for the software
Amazing seems to be
Excellent inside area
We like less
Again seats could use extra aid
No wireless smartphone integration
BMW X3 M40i
2021 Mercedes-AMG GLB 35 pictures