2023 Mercedes-Benz GLC SUV Gets Hybrid Engine And A Transparent Hood

Mercedes-Benz is making some major updates for its 2023 GLC SUV, its compact luxury crossover. The new model year brings with it a more powerful hybrid engine, interior and exterior tweaks, and enhanced off-road performance. That starts with an uptick in power from the electrified four-cylinder gas engine, courtesy of an integrated starter generator and 48-volt onboard electrical system Mercedes-Benz said today in an announcement.

The new hybrid engine comes standard with the 2023 GLC models and adds 22 lb-ft of torque when compared to the 2022 GLC SUV. The 2.0L inline-4 turbo engine combines with the electric 48-Volt mild-hybrid system to deliver 258 horsepower at 5,800-6,100 rpm and 295 lb-ft at 1,800–4,000 rpm. A 9-speed automatic transmission is standard. 

Official pricing for the 2023 Mercedes GLC 300 will be announced closer to its arrival in dealerships, sometime in 2023, though the current 2022 model starts at $43,850 (plus destination) in rear-wheel drive form, or $45,850 with all-wheel drive. This upgraded version will face off against the Audi Q5, which starts at $43,300, as well as the BMW X3, from $43,700, among other SUVs in the luxury segment. 

Mercedes tweaked the exterior and interior of the new model, with a chrome under-guard, roof rails, optional running boards, and new contoured edges on the sides to distinguish the new SUV and give it a sportier look. The front also looks slightly different, with new headlamps that connect to the grille surrounded by chrome giving a wider feel and a more aggressive profile.

The 2023 GLC SUV: Technology for off-road driving

While many SUVs in the category rarely roam off the asphalt, Mercedes-Benz is keen to stress the new GLC's off-road capabilities and promises new technologies to better face inclement weather conditions and unpaved roads. Dynamic Body Control works with new four-link front suspension and a multi-link independent rear suspension, and can adapt to the current the situation, speed, and condition of the road.

The automaker has also made the off-road experience simpler. Drivers can manage the features through the new off-road screen in the MBUX infotainment system. When users activate "Off-road Mode" they can access a new function called "transparent hood." The tech uses a 360-degree camera to display a virtual view from under the front of the vehicle, including the front wheels and the steering position, as though the driver could see right through the front of the SUV. 

That can help boost their understanding of the current traction, driving, and steering conditions, not to mention avoiding hidden obstacles like large boulders or deep holes. There are also virtual gauges for inclination, gradient, topographical altitude, geo-coordinates, and a compass, accessed through the standard 11.9-inch center touchscreen that also supports wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and the "Hey Mercedes" hands-free voice control system. Wireless phone charging, blind-spot assistance, 18-inch wheels, and a power liftgate are also standard, while a Burmester 3D Surround Sound system, head-up display, ventilated front seats, and the Driver Assistance Package are all optional.