In a surprise development, Mercedes-Benz has relaunched the GLB in South Africa after making what has been dubbed the “mini G-Class” available two years ago.
While the reason for this decision remains unknown, the GLB, which Mercedes-Benz described as “intelligent” and “practical” in a series of teasers before its world reveal in 2019, now offers the segment filler between the GLA and GLC with seven seats only after originally availing it with five as well.
Dimensionally and aesthetically unchanged from two years ago, the GLB measures 4 634 mm in overall length with its wheelbase stretching 2 829 mm.
Based on the same MFA2 front-wheel-drive platform as the A-Class hatch and sedan, the GLA, CLA and B-Class, the GLB stands 1 659 mm tall and measures 1 834 mm wide with Mercedes-Benz claiming a boot capacity of between 570 and 1 805-litres.
As before, the local line-up comprises two models; the GLB 220d that makes 140kW/400Nm from its 2.0-litre OM654g turbodiesel engine and the GLB 250, whose 2.0-litre M260 turbo-petrol cranks out 165kW/350Nm.
Both units are paired to an eight-speed dual-clutch gearbox with the GLB220d being the sole derivative to offer the 4Matic all-wheel-drive system. Top speed is capped at 217 km/h for the oil-burner with the petrol topping out at 240 km/h.
The respective 0-100 km/h sprint times are 7.6 and 7.1 seconds with fuel consumption figures of 5.7 L/100 km and 8.4 L/100 km.
Joining the range at a later stage, the AMG GLB 35 will be offered in limited numbers and with the same seven-seat layout. Outputting 225kW/400Nm from its 2.0-litre turbo-petrol, the 35 will get from 0-100 km/h in 5.2 seconds and hit the electronic speed buffers at the usual 250 km/h.
As standard, the GLB 220d boasts the so-called Off-Road Engineering package that comprises Downhill Start Assistance, a specific animation within the 10.25-inch MBUX infotainment system, five driving modes and Hill Start Assist.
Pricing kicks-off at R907 000 for the GLB 250 and at R918 000 for the GLB 220d 4Matic. A sticker for the AMG GLB 35 will be announced closer to the local launch.