18 Mercedes GLC a

It costs: $76,730.

It has: A 150-kilowatt 2.1-litre four-cylinder turbo diesel with a 9-speed auto.

We got: 8.8 litres per 100 km in the city, 5.8 in the country. The official combined figure is 5.7.

Consensus: Best in the city.


He says:

A funny thing happens in the GLC when you’re on cruise control. If the car thinks you’re taking a corner too fast it slows you down and only resumes cruise when you’re pointed straight ahead again. Sheryl likes this, I found it damn 18 Mercedes GLC bannoying; who’s driving this thing? But I have to admit the GLC is very safe. Autonomous braking with pedestrian identification, adaptive cruise, lane departure and blind spot warnings. I’ve heard of one old codger racking up regular minor prangs (always his fault) who bought a GLC figuring it would keep him out of trouble.

This is a city SUV. It’s on 20-inch low profile run-flat tyres so the ride can get quite harsh, especially out of town, and in town speed bumps are pure hell. There’s no spare and I was quoted $625 for a single replacement tyre. And while it handles nicely it doesn’t come close to Range Rover’s Evoque. But it’s quiet and relaxed and there’s a ton of torque on hand and no significant evidence of turbo lag, which along with a silky nine-speed auto makes this a very smooth operator. And the audio is a cut above.

It’s also sharply priced, starting at $71k. Given the equipment levels this most expensive GLC is very good value against its major competitors.

Rod’s verdict:
An attractive package until you need tyres.

She says:
I love the surround-view camera. I first saw this idea on a Nissan and it’s brilliant. Cameras front, back and at the sides tell you exactly how far every part of the car is from encountering pot plants, low walls, bollards and abandoned bicycles. It makes parking and reversing brilliantly easy.

18 Mercedes GLC cAs for the rest of the electronics, not so much. There are buttons everywhere; dash, doors, console, below and behind the steering wheel and on the steering wheel; there’s a control wheel on the console and there are menu systems both in the instrument cluster and the centre screen, which looks like an iPad glued to the dash. Have all of this explained before you drive away and pay attention; it’s not all straightforward. Budget a good slice of time to learn how to operate the most perplexing cruise control. The electronic park brake takes some finding.

Get used to things however and the GLC is a nice way to travel, with plenty of usable power. The cabin is beautifully finished, the seating is comfy and supportive. The safety warnings can get a little like having your mother in the back seat but you can live with them. Back seat room is adequate and the cargo area is generous for the vehicle’s size.

Sheryl’s verdict:
Figure out the electronics and this becomes a very nice thing.

Published June 2016


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