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  • MARK TAKAHASHI: What we have here is the all new 2020

  • Mercedes Benz GLB class.

  • It proves itself worthy.

  • In fact, I actually think it's one

  • of the best SUVs I've driven.

  • During this review, I'm going to try and prove to you why.

  • Let's get through some of the specifics.

  • First, under the hood, we have a 2-liter turbo-charged

  • 4-cylinder engine that puts out 221 horsepower.

  • That's made into an 8-speed automated dual clutch

  • transmission.

  • And it comes standard with front wheel drive.

  • Prices start right around $38,000.

  • For another two grand, though, you

  • can get Mercedes 4matic all wheel drive.

  • This, as with a lot of our test vehicles,

  • is almost fully loaded with a price tag of around $57,000.

  • But a lot of these options aren't really necessary

  • and don't add too much to why I like the GLB so much.

  • Before we hit the road, let's talk about style real quick

  • with this GLB.

  • First off, I like it.

  • I like it because it's a throwback

  • to boxy and utilitarian SUVs.

  • Nowadays, they're getting really swoopy and sculpted

  • with coupe-like roof lines.

  • And this is boxy, a traditional two-box design.

  • And it pays huge dividends when it comes to interior space.

  • We'll get to all of that later.

  • So how about we go for a spin?

  • I'm on one of my favorite roads in Southern California,

  • this wonderful sinuous twisting road

  • through a canyon pass, that gives me

  • a good indication of how well a car handles.

  • Mercedes Benz estimates that the GLB 250

  • will reach 60 miles an hour in 6.9 seconds.

  • You're not going to win any races there.

  • And honestly, it's not an impressive performer.

  • But what is impressive is how easy it is to drive.

  • I'm just in regular key-up sport mode here.

  • And there's a little bit of body roll,

  • but it's very well managed.

  • The ride quality is excellent.

  • And even over the mid-corner bumps, it's very composed.

  • If you really want more performance,

  • I'm going to say it's a really good bet that they'll

  • have some mid-tier AMG variants, like the AMG 35 or 45.

  • I spent a lot of time with this GLB in Arizona

  • on a first drive.

  • And really, the only time I wanted more power

  • was when I was passing a long train of slightly slower cars

  • going up a very steep grade.

  • And even then, with my foot to the floor,

  • the car didn't feel like it was laboring that much.

  • It didn't sound like I was blending margaritas.

  • And it did it with plenty of space to spare.

  • The GLB, it takes corners confidently.

  • It takes them smoothly.

  • And really, I don't really see a need for the sport mode here.

  • Let's just go back to comfort.

  • There it is.

  • See?

  • That's so much nicer.

  • It's smoother.

  • It's quieter.

  • It's what you want from a Mercedes Benz, even one costing

  • 38 grand.

  • The brakes feel good going into turns,

  • easy to modulate, with the right amount of effort, at least

  • for me.

  • It's not too soft.

  • It's not sports car stiff either.

  • Coming down into a steep right turn here.

  • Easy on the brakes.

  • Ease off of them.

  • It's just easy to drive it.

  • A lot of shoppers will gravitate towards SUVs

  • because of their great outward visibility.

  • And the GLB delivers.

  • The upright and tall windows give you a commanding view.

  • And the narrow front roof pillars

  • won't block your view through turns.

  • The rear roof pillars are much thicker.

  • But the view out back is still better than most other SUVs.

  • Besides, if you're backing into a spot,

  • the surround view camera takes any guesswork out.

  • It's so easy squeezing this into my tiny, tiny little carport

  • in my apartment.

  • Actually, it's one of the easiest outside of a Miata.

  • This just has what I think is an optimal blend of comfort

  • and handling prowess.

  • All right, now that we're out of the canyons

  • and onto the flatlands, let's talk about highway and city

  • driving.

  • I spent almost eight hours straight in the seat driving

  • from Phoenix to LA because I didn't feel the need to stop.

  • I was that comfortable.

  • It's not just ride quality but also the seats.

  • They're well-shaped with the right amount of cushioning.

  • After eight hours, I think it really

  • did make a big difference on that drive.

  • Another thing helping to combat fatigue is this is quiet.

  • There's not a lot of road noise.

  • There's almost no wind noise.

  • That's impressive considering how kind

  • of squared up this shape is.

  • There's no whistling coming from the mirrors here

  • or at the grille or anywhere else.

  • Another reason why I was able to drive for that

  • long was the adaptive cruise control

  • that Mercedes put in the GLB.

  • It's really good.

  • It's driving pretty much like how I drive.

  • I'm not waiting to to the last second the jam on the brakes.

  • And I'm not flooring the pedal when traffic clears up

  • in front of me.

  • It's maintaining a really good gap to the car in front.

  • And it's just kind of easing off the throttle then

  • gently applying the brakes to come to a stop.

  • And it is full-range speed control

  • all the way down to a stop.

  • And when traffic picks up, you don't

  • have to hit the resume button.

  • It just does it on its own.

  • I've said this before in other reviews.

  • When I'm nit picking the car, that means I really like it

  • and I'm really digging for something to criticize.

  • Since this GSB is based on our top rated A class,

  • it benefits from all of that goodness.

  • First off, we have the award winning MBUX

  • infotainment system, which gives you a multitude of ways

  • to control it, from these little handy tabs here on the steering

  • wheel, to a trace pad here, to a touchscreen, as well

  • as some of the best voice controls in the industry.

  • Materials quality is excellent, especially

  • when you consider the price.

  • Every elbow touchpoint and anywhere you really

  • come in contact normally is well-padded

  • and has premium, premium materials.

  • I realize that cup holders may not be that big

  • a deal to a lot of people.

  • But I think these cup holders in the GLB

  • are good enough to call out.

  • Because they'll hold a regular sized

  • drink, but they'll also securely keep

  • a smaller can, like a Red Bull, because

  • of these little flip-out tabs.

  • Pretty smart.

  • Other storage is really good, too.

  • There are some big, deep pockets in the doors.

  • You have a wireless charging pad option.

  • The center bin is pretty well-sized.

  • Overall, you have plenty of places

  • to put your personal effects.

  • I also like these round turbine air vents that change color.

  • And actually, at night, this thing looks really cool.

  • You have the option of the ambient lighting

  • to shift colors regularly.

  • And it kind of just gives you that premium futuristic feel

  • that you want from a Mercedes Benz.

  • Overall, it's one of the better executed cockpits

  • I've been in in a while.

  • But let's check out the back seats.

  • This seat here is set for me, and I'm 5 foot 10.

  • My head, it's not even close to touching the head line.

  • These seats also slide and recline six inches forward

  • if you need a little more flexibility between passengers

  • and cargo.

  • And still, look, my knees are just barely touching it.

  • They also recline a little bit here so that you're--

  • that's a little uncomfortable in upright.

  • But when you have it full reclined,

  • it's really quite nice.

  • Materials quality is also excellent back here.

  • They didn't skimp and put harder plastics for more durability.

  • Down here, two USB C ports as well as a household power

  • outlet.

  • There's also a third row option that sits behind these seats.

  • But considering how much space there is back there,

  • it's best suited for small kids on your morning carpool.

  • But it's really handy that they even offer that option.

  • If the GLB wasn't impressive enough,

  • there's also cargo space.

  • And there's a lot of it behind that second row of seats.

  • This boxy shape means you can squeeze much bulkier items

  • than you could with a regular SUV with kind

  • of a sporty tapered tail line.

  • If you don't opt for the third row of seats,

  • this floor drops down for even more space.

  • Pretty impressive.

  • Another thing that I really like is this low lift-over height.

  • If you're carrying something really big, bulky, and heavy,

  • you don't have to hock it over some big ledge or anything.

  • I do have one nit pick when it comes to cargo capacity,

  • though.

  • And that is the absence of remote releases

  • for those rear seat backs.

  • There's no latches here.

  • There's no little tabs to pull here.

  • Instead, you have to go all the way around and pull

  • on some nylon tabs here to fold them flat.

  • Not the end of the world, especially when you consider

  • that with the second row folded flat,

  • you have 62 cubic feet of cargo capacity.

  • That's actually more than the GLC.

  • As the sun goes down, I am left as surprised

  • as I am impressed by the GLB 250.

  • This is my pick in a number of segments.

  • I like it better than the BMW X1 as well as

  • one of my favorites, the Volvo XC40.

  • In fact, I'd take it over the GLC, which

  • is larger and more expensive.

  • It's packaged smartly.

  • It has the right amount of power.

  • It drives great.

  • There's a ton of space for passengers and cargo.

  • There's a ton of tech.

  • And the accolades just keep piling on

  • to the point where I'm saying, this is the next class leader.

  • For more information on the GLB as well as its competition,

  • head on over to edmunds.com.

  • To see more reviews like this, hit subscribe.

MARK TAKAHASHI: What we have here is the all new 2020

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2020 Mercedes-Benz GLB-250 Review & Test Drive: One of the Best Small Luxury SUVs?

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    Henry 楊 posted on 2020/06/17
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