Mercedes-Benz Malaysia’s compact car range has grown a little in terms of size as well as seating capacity with the GLB that sports a 5+2 configuration and can be had in either GLB200 Progressive Line or GLB250 4Matic AMG Line trims.
This makes the GLB the most affordable seven-seater in the Mercedes-Benz range and is a must easier option on the bank account for those that regularly need to ferry seven can’t splurge on a GLE or GLS.
A stark contrast against the other SUVs in the range, the GLB takes on a boxier and more angular design language that was meant to lend it a muscular, brawny aura. Even the grille up front is more upright in line with the design cues.
On the GLB200, power comes from the same 1.33 litre turbocharged four-cylinder in the A200. It brings 161hp and 250Nm of torque to the table. A 7G-DCT seven-speed wet dual-clutch transmission sends power to the front wheels.
The Progressive Line trim package includes a dual-slat front grille and skid plate with chrome mouldings on the door sides and exhaust surrounds. Completing the package are a leather steering wheel, comfort seats and black Artico leather upholstery.
Stepping up to the GLB250 nets you a larger 2.0-litre turbo four engine that delivers 221hp and 350Nm of torque to all four wheels via the 8G-DCT eight-speed dual-clutch transmission.
The AMG Line kit on the GLB250 announces itself in the form of a more aggressive front bumper with faux side inlets and a wider intake at the bottom. There’s plenty of chrome here too but the grille is a single-slat take with the diamond-pinned insert. At the rear, there’s a diffuser element to finish the bumper.
Kit count in the GLB250 is understandably more and includes carbon-structure trim, a Nappa leather steering wheel, sports seats, Artico leather/Dinamica microfibre upholstery, ambient lighting, AMG floor mats and a remote engine start function.
Shared between the two GLBs are LED High Performance headlights, aluminium roof rails, power-adjustable front seats, rear air-conditioning vents and a powered tailgate as well as the eight colour options of Polar White, Denim Blue, Iridium Silver, Cosmos Black, Galaxy Blue, Digital White, Mountain Grey and Patagonia Red.
They roll on different wheels though, 18-inch five-spokes for the GLB200 and 19-inch AMG five-twin-spokes for the GLB250.
Both ride on Comfort suspension but the GLB250 is fitted with the Off-Road Engineering package for an extra drive mode and a Downhill Speed Regulation (DSR) function together with additional displays on the instrument cluster. Having drive to all four wheels has its perks.
The GLB’s dashboard is standard Mercedes-Benz compact vehicle fare. You’ll find the twin 10.25-inch displays with the right side serving as the instrument cluster and the left as the MBUX infotainment touchscreen. Connectivity includes the LTE module that enables Mercedes Me connected services as well as Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.
Safety comprises a reverse camera, Active Parking Assist with Parktronic, Pre-Safe, active brake assist, keyless entry, Keyless-Go and a tyre pressure monitoring system.
Pricing for the GLB200 is RM269,118 while the GLB250 4Matic goes for RM318,009 (OTR w/o insurance) and includes a four-year, unlimited-mileage warranty.