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AutoGuide Five-Point Inspection
This week, Autoguide.com takes a look at Mercedes’ GLK350 small crossover. The boxy trucklette gets mild styling updates for 2013 and promises mildly improved fuel economy over last year’s model. But what else is important about the square-looking Benz?
More details on the updated Mercedes-Benz GLK are appearing today before the car’s official debut at the upcoming New York Auto Show. The updated compact CUV sports a revised look, new engines and more.
American consumers can expect two engines powering the GLK: either an updated 3.5-liter V6 in the higher-end GLK350, or a 2.1-liter four-cylinder turbo diesel in the GLK250 BlueTEC. The gas-burning V6 makes 302 hp and 273 lb-ft of torque while the diesel offers 190 hp and a 369 lb-ft.
The vehicles will be available in either rear-wheel, or Mercedes’ 4MATIC all-wheel drive and every GLK will have a seven-speed automatic transmission.
To improve fuel efficiency, the GLK will have engine start-stop and an ECO display in the instrument cluster that displays consumption in real time.
The updated GLK exterior has adapted the brand’s new look, including LED daytime running lights and maintains good off-roading features like short overhangs, upright front end, slender roof pillars, and a steep windscreen, though there probably aren’t many GLK owners who take their CUVs wheeling.
Additionally, Mercedes-Benz tells us that there will be an AMG styling package that adds 19-inch rims, or an alterative but stylish body package. Mercedes updated the interior as well with round vents and the new COMMAND Online infotainment system.
Take a look at the full gallery below, and be sure to check back for more information about the 2013 GLK.
Gallery: 2013 Mercedes-Benz GLK
The CUV will sell under the 2013 model year, probably with a 2.1-liter diesel engine making 204 horsepower and 369 lb-ft of torque. The engine, which is already approved under U.S. emissions standards, is almost a third smaller than what the company offers in the rest of its diesel lineup: the E, S, M, R and GL Class models. The news about Mercedes’ latest diesel decision was confirmed to Automotive News at the recent Detroit Auto Show. The new GLK will come with a host of new features and smoother lines than the previous model (pictured above).
Diesel engines are proving to be a popular choice for German auto manufacturers. Volkswagen has long been known for offering a diesel variant on many of their cars. Porsche, which they own, will also be sending a diesel Cayenne stateside. BMW also already sells a diesel 3-Series and X5.
Thanks to higher compression ratios, cars burning diesel can offer significantly better mileage, and have especially noticeable torque. That means they pull hard from a stop sign or traffic light. The downside is that they have a relatively low top speed and comparatively weak horsepower, though neither of those things are particularly relevant to most daily drivers. The only other problem is that diesel is more expensive than gasoline, lightly offsetting the cost-to-benefit ratio.
Nonetheless, Mercedes is proving that they have faith in the technology and so far that faith seems well founded. They are expecting sales figures for the GLK to reach the “high 30′s” compared to last year’s 24,310 units, according to Mercedes’ U.S. chief Steve Cannon.
[Source: Automotive News]