That Mercedes-Benz introduced a compact seven-seater SUV was some big brain thinking from Stuttgart. Their compact range of vehicles were selling well, so why not add in a model with extra seating in that range? Hence, the Mercedes-Benz GLB was born.
That they would introduce an AMG version of it was also a no-brainer. However, that the AMG version sacrificed the third row, making it a five-seater… that was a major face-palm moment.
You can buy the Mercedes-AMG GLB 35 4Matic at RM363,137 (OTR w/o insurance) but with it being a five-seater, it kind of defeats the purpose of a model marketed as a seven-seater.
The only thing this model has going for it is bragging rights as it’s the most affordable AMG SUV model on sale in Malaysia; but not the most affordable AMG in general. Therefore, if you had a weird childhood that now manifests itself as questionable taste in cars and your dream vehicle is an AMG SUV on a budget, consider your childhood trauma settled.
Power comes from the same engine you’ll find in the Mercedes-AMG 35 range of vehicles; the 2.0-litre turbo four making 302hp and 400Nm of torque. Power hits all four wheels via the AMG Performance 4Matic system with an an eight-speed AMG Speedshift DCT dual-clutch transmission in sandwiched in between.
That’s good for a century sprint of 5.2-seconds and a limited top speed of 250kph. Helping it keep steady at those speeds are the AMG Ride Control adaptive suspension and 20-inch AMG five-twin-spoke light-alloy wheels.
Visually setting it apart from the garden variety GLBs are Multibeam LED headlights with Adaptive Highbeam Assist Plus and the AMG Line exterior package with the Panamericana front grille and round exhaust tips letting you know that whoever bought this might have missed out on the common-sense gene.
In the cabin, you’ll find a Nappa leather steering wheel, faux carbon trimmings, Artico leather/Dinamica microfibre upholstery, AMG floor mats, sports seats and designo red seat belts.
Of course, there’s the MBUX infotainment system on the left side of the twin 10.25-inch screen setup. You’ll also get dual-zone climate control with rear vents, powered front seats with memory function, ambient lighting, Mercedes Me connected services, remote engine start, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay connectivity to play your favourite tunes out of the Burmester sound system.
Safety wise, there’s a reverse camera, blind spot assist, Active Parking Assist with Parktronic, Pre-Safe, active brake assist, hands-free access, active lane-keeping assist, Keyless-Go, a tyre pressure monitoring system and Easy-Pack tailgate; which is just fancy name for a powered tailgate.