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Aside from updated exteriors and Merc's latest-gen MBUX, 48V mild hybrid assistance is set to impact all variants for more efficiency and driving comfort.

17 Mar 2023 | International News : Germany

Just moments after it unveiled the all new GLC Coupe, Mercedes-Benz has also revealed facelifted versions of its bestselling GLA and GLB compact crossovers.

Beyond mere cosmetic nips-and-tucks, the updates are set to make the driving experience in the runts of the firm's crossover/SUV litter even more refined with the introduction of electrification. 

Modernised light signatures in the new LED head and taillights subtly freshen up the cars (GLB pictured)
The exterior tweaks on both cars will likely require a trained eye to identify - although once they've been picked up on, one won't deny that these subtle refreshments undoubtedly help to bring the cars' designs up to date. Modernised light signatures feature in the new LED High Performance head lights and taillights - which have dropped the rounded rectangles of the pre-facelifted cars for cleaner, horizontal strips.

The new GLA and GLB also each get redesigned front and rear bumpers, and a flashier radiator grille, although this retains Merc's large central star.

The upgrades continue on the inside, where a slightly revised freestanding double screen offers a 7.0-inch driver's display and 10.25-inch infotainment touchscreen as standard. With the latest generation of MBUX running on the screens, newly designed display styles also enhance the user experience.

Newly designed display styles feature on the freestanding double screen (Cabin of GLB pictured)
Other standard equipment includes new comfort seats upholstered in Artico man-made leather and black fabric, and Merc's latest generation steering wheel that is likewise leather-wrapped.

An additional USB-C port (illuminated alongside the rest of the car's USB ports), and standard wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay connectivity also arrive with the new cars.

Perhaps most significant, however, is the introduction of electrification throughout the range. The more observant consumers among us will know that both models effectively share the same powertrain lineup, with the most popular 180 and 200 variants propelled by a 1.3-litre turbocharged inline-four mated to seven-speed dual-clutch transmission.

Both the more manic GLB35 (pictured) and GLA35 will now also get mild hybrid assistance 
The addition of 48V mild hybrid assistance offers an extra 10kW when moving off the line, or for brief boosts in power.

Expect some gains in efficiency, firstly, to be made as a result of the new belt-driven starter-generator recuperating energy during braking and acceleration processes. On the driving experience front, more comfort is also promised since it enables low-vibration and low-noise engine starting. Speaking of which, the engine can be completely switched off, too, when coasting.

Crucially, the electrification is set to impact even the more manic Mercedes-AMG GLA35 and GLB35, both of which have also gotten their sheet metals and interior designs refreshed for 2023.

As with the latest AMG models, the compact AMG siblings get the latest AMG Performance steering wheel (Cabin of GLA35 pictured)
The AMG-handled siblings are still powered by a 2.0-litre turbocharged engine producing 302Nm and 400Nm of torque, which is mated to a specific eight-speed AMG Speedshift dual-clutch transmission.

The duo is also still equipped with Merc-AMG's AMG Performance 4Matic variable all-wheel drive system for better traction, but drivers are now greeted with the racier, latest-gen AMG Performance steering wheel. At press time, no updates had been announced yet for the top-of-the-line GLA 45S.

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