The crossover SUV fever is in its full force right now, with more and more automakers releasing these almost every month. The popularity is explained by the existence of strong demand for them, so the manufacturers are just making what sells the most at the moment. Two powerhouses of the luxury crossover segment, Audi and BMW have already upgraded or released new models for the 2017 year, which prompted Mercedes to come up with its answer. The release of AMG GLC 43 model, however, cannot be considered just as a response to the competition, but also a necessity to complement the line-up of AMG performance-oriented vehicles.
Before 2017 Mercedes-AMG GLC 43 4MATIC was introduced, a significant pricing gap existed within the AMG line-up between GLE 63 and GLA 45. Specifically, the first respective model started at $99,900 while the second one could be purchased at about $49,550, which made the customers pay a whopping $50,000 extra if they wanted to get something larger and more equipped than GLA-Class. Certainly, the rumors about filling this huge gap have been going on for some time and the anticipated model that should bridge it was finally announced this May.
The German manufacturer was undoubtedly in a hurry to introduce AMG version of GLC, the model that should provide Mercedes with a competitive advantage in the segment. The CEO of the Mercedes-AMG said, “With the new AMG GLC43 we are offering an AMG model in the mid-size SUV segment for the first time. The new SUV from Affalterbach marks the pinnacle of the GLC product range and in the AMG portfolio, it closes the gap between the GLA and GLE.”
These words sound exciting, and the new model is worth talking about so read below to find out more.
Engine, Specs, Transmission
To justify its status as an AMG, the manufacturer has equipped the model with a V6 engine. It is the first time this engine was brought into the GLC line-up and certainly enhanced the performance of the vehicle. Here are the details: it is a 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged V6, which generates a respectable 362 horsepower and 384 lb-ft of torque. As you would expect, these capabilities deliver an impressive performance: the run to 60 miles per hour takes a mere 4.8 seconds. According to the manufacturer, the 2017 Mercedes-AMG GLC 43 4MATIC has the top speed of 155 mph; apparently, it is electronically limited but still amazing for an SUV.
This engine is combined with the 9G Tronic nine-speed transmission featuring a multiple downshift function that enables the driver to drop more than one gear at a time. It is a truly AMG-ish function that along with the engine makes AMG GLC 43 special. The list of remarkable engine features continues with the AMG Dynamic Select system that allows adjustment of various driving dynamics, including suspension characteristics, throttle response, and idle speed. If the driver is not interested or has no knowledge of the proper adjustment, he or she can use the pre-programmed models in the system: Eco, Sport, Sport Plus, Comfort, and Individual.
Seeing the 2017 Mercedes-AMG GLC 43 4MATIC revealed, we can easily conclude that the manufacturer did not spend much time changing the exterior. For example, the traditional hood and headlights are retained in the front and down below, the same could be said about the air vents. The front grille, however, has been slightly redesigned and added with a gloss black background and chrome pins. The look at the profile reveals that the vehicle has a new chrome insert that runs the length of the side skirts. The standard color of this crossover, gloss black, is also used to paint the 20-inch alloy wheels and the mirrors, which makes the vehicle more solid-looking.
As for the rear, the only changes that were provided by the designers include a rear diffuser and exhaust tips. Once again, chrome insert was used around the endings, a subtle addition that still leaves us wanting more. For example, if Mercedes made the hood more aggressive, we would have a rather different conversation but regarding exterior, there is not a lot to talk about at all. Don’t get us wrong; we like the styling of the GLC, but for the AMG performance model we expect to see more.
If you want to find what has been changed inside the cabin, you might need to spend even more time than on exterior. Well, with subtleness problem set aside, we discover that traditional circular wheel has been changed; now, the 2017 Mercedes-AMG GLC 43 has a flat-bottom sport steering wheel that does much more than just steering. Specifically, it features the control buttons for the information screen located in the instrument cluster. To make the cabin more AMG-looking, the three-lettered badge is placed on the bottom stroke of the steering wheel.
We find that the materials used for the cabin are high-quality but then again they already were used in earlier Mercedes models so nothing exciting to talk about here as well. However, it should be mentioned that the seats have improved the lateral support that now enables the driver and passengers to hold position during more aggressive maneuvers on the road. Given the power of the engine, it is certainly a good addition. Finally, the center console deserves mentioning as well because its clear-finished carbon fiber greatly completes the elegant and stylish look of the cabin design.
The 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLC43 AMG 4MATIC is delivered with a great load of safety features to justify the status that every AMG vehicle receives. For example, the load bearing points and steering knuckles on the four-link rear axle are specially designed for the customers of the car. It will also have all basic safety features offered with the standard GLC SUV, including blind spot monitoring, lane change warning, climate control, parking assist, a couple of cameras placed around the body, and others. Moreover, the designers have provided speed-sensitive steering to make the trips even more comfortable and safer by adjusting the amount of movement needed.
2017 Mercedes-AMG GLC 43 Price, Release Date
Even though the manufacturer has not confirmed the prices yet, we can make certain predictions. When the model goes on sale later this year, its starting price is most likely to be placed in the mid-$50,000 range to bridge the gap between the existing models.