Merc lowers the roof: Mercedes GLC Coupe revealed at 2016 New York show

Published: 23 March 2016

► Mercedes GLC Coupe revealed
► Low-roof, lower-suspension GLC
► Debut at 2016 New York show

Another chop-top SUV coupe joins the party: say hello to the Mercedes GLC Coupe, making its production car debut at the 2016 New York motor show.

A lower-roofed partner to the regular GLC mid-sized SUV, it’s a pseudo-sporty rival to the likes of the BMW X4, Jaguar F-Pace, Porsche Macan and Infiniti QX50.

The GLC Coupe was originally shown as a concept at the 2015 Shanghai motor show and now, a year later, it’s about to become a showroom reality.

What makes the Mercedes GLC Coupe different from the regular GLC?

There’s that roof, of course. The Coupe takes a French curve-shaped chunk out of the GLC’s roofline, reducing rear load space but giving the car a similar high-beltline, low-roof stance to the BMW X4. The aggression factor’s turned up a notch by big wheels (up to 20in in diameter as an option) and a dished, ‘diamond’ finish grille.

At 4.7m long and 1.6m high it’s nearly 8cm longer than the GLC, and 4cm lower. In-keeping with current fashion, there’s no wiper on the rear screen. Merc reckons the airflow stays attached until after the spoiler lip on the S-class Coupe lookalike bootlid, preventing water settling on the window.

Go for AMG Line trim and you get a more butch exterior bodykit and huggier sports seats inside. Interior is essentially the same as the regular GLC, including the non-retractable multimedia screen mounted mid-dash.

Looks kinda sporty. Will it drive kinda sporty, too?

The Coupe gets lower suspension than the regular GLC and a more direct power steering setup. The vast majority of models are all-wheel drive, and two electronic adaptive damper suspension options are available: ‘dynamic body control’ with steel springs, and ‘air body control’ with air suspension.

Putting the latter in ‘Sport+ mode’ automatically drops the ride height by 15mm, and regardless of mode the spring and damper rates can adjust on the fly – particularly in the case of a sudden evasive manoeuvre, for instance. It’s also possible for the air suspension to lower the boot sill via the rear springs by 4cm to help load heavy items.

Lightest model is the GLC 250, hardly a featherweight at 1710kg but nonetheless reasonably trim by the standards of the class.

What’s the 2016 Mercedes GLC Coupe model line-up?

Eight models across various markets, including four petrol and four diesel choices along with a plug-in hybrid and a standalone AMG 43 performance model. The majority of models are all-wheel drive, and badged as ‘4Matic’ variants. All use a nine-speed ‘9G-Tronic’ automatic gearbox, with the exception of the hybrid which has a seven-speed auto. The four-cylinder diesel and petrol models launch first in autumn 2016, with the rest of the range arriving a little later.

The entry-level 4-cyl diesels:
GLC 220d (168bhp)

GLC 250d 4Matic (201bhp)

The four-pot petrol:
GLC 250 4Matic (208bhp)

The plug-in hybrid:
GLC 350e 4Matic (petrol-electric, system output 316bhp, 18-mile electric mode range, provisional CO2 output of 59-64g/km)

The fast AMG one:
Mercedes-AMG GLC 43 4Matic (V6 bi-turbo, 362bhp, 0-62mph in less than 5sec)

Look out for a first drive of the Mercedes GLC Coupe in time for autumn 2016. CAR’s already driven the regular, high-roofed Mercedes GLC – click here for our online review.

Read more of CAR’s 2016 New York motor show coverage here

Click here for CAR’s A-Z guide to the 2016 New York motor show

Is it a coupe? Is it an SUV? It's the new Merc GLC Coupe

By James Taylor

CAR's deputy features editor, occasional racer

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