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18 Feb 2021

What We Dislike
Engine doesn't sound nice at high revs
Third row best left for kids only

The GLB35 combines practical, family friendly SUV functionality with potent and capable AMG performance.

The appeal of the Mercedes-Benz GLB-Class is clear - functional practicality of a compact crossover, the added flexibility with its seven-seater configuration, ample comfort for the whole family, and of course, the three-pointed star on the car's nose.

But what if the standard GLB200 is a little too placid looking and you're wanting for more speed? Well, then you'd be wanting this car - the GLB35.

Just swell

The AMG styling on the GLB35 adds a real sense of prupose and muscular presence
This AMG model brings the expected AMG styling to the boxy GLB, and it really works well.

There's the AMG-specific radiator grille, a front splitter, a prominent rear apron, as well as 19-inch AMG 5-twin-spoke wheels. The car looks muscular and sharp, and there's a real sense of gravitas and purpose with this model.

Inside, it's pretty straightforward Mercedes fare - high gloss, high tech and high class. Yes, there are some AMG specific elements, including a Supersport display, sports seats and the standard Lights and Sights package, but these are largely cosmetic and superfluous. Functionally, the car still works as you'd expect it to. Touch Control buttons? Tick. Sleek Widescreen Cockpit with "Hey Mercedes" voice control? Tick. Plenty of ambient lighting? Tick.

Never dull

The 2.0-litre pumps out a very healthy 302bhp and 400Nm of torque
Put your foot down and this seven-seater SUV accelerates with uncanny potency. The 2.0-litre engine pumps out 302bhp and 400Nm of torque, allowing the GLB35 to complete the century sprint in just 5.2 seconds.

It's initially a somewhat odd experience. There's almost a mental disconnect between how you imagine a relatively chunky, high-riding SUV to drive and what actually transpires. The car is capable of darting in and out of traffic if you so desire, and you can easily upset your older parents just by stabbing at the throttle.

Admittedly, the engine doesn't sound very nice when extended. Driven lightly, though, and the GLB35 is really easy going. Power is easy and accessible, cruising at highway speeds quiet and refined, and the ride is very pliant and comfortable.

Sport+ mode firms up the suspension and sharpens the throttle, ideal for spirited driving
Throw it into a couple of corners and the GLB35 acquits itself impressively. All-wheel drive gives you plenty of traction, and body roll is well controlled, especially if you set the dampers in their sportier settings.

Issues? In Comfort mode, the gearbox is quite eager to upshift on medium throttle, which leads to some jerkiness. If you're the sort that likes to get ahead of traffic at traffic lights, you're better served putting the car in Sport mode, where the gearbox holds the gear a little longer to allow smoother acceleration.

Just as well

So why should you buy a car like this?

The GLB35 comes standard with Mercedes me connect 
If you want a genuinely exciting AMG experience, this isn't really it. While the GLB is undeniably capable even when driving enthusiastically, there's fundamentally no overcoming the simple laws of physics. This is still a high-riding, seven-seating SUV that's designed more for families than for weekend racers.

However, this GLB35 does amplify the GLB's inherent character, while also overcoming some of its shortcomings (namely the complaints that the GLB200 is slightly lacking in power). It looks really impressive, delivers plenty of practicality and usability, and is dynamically capable no matter the situation - whether cruising cross country or crushing century sprints.

The GLB35 combines the need for practical daily family-focused functionality with the demand for occasional bursts of performance
And in that sense, this GLB35 seems to really capture the GLB-Class' character.

See, the GLB isn't really a full-fledged seven-seater. It's a compact SUV that can occasionally be purposed to do the job of its larger, more full-fledged brethren. Just as well, then.

Similarly, this isn't a full-fledged AMG performance car. Rather, it's a practical family SUV that can occasionally be purposed to do the job of its naughtier, more raucous AMG siblings. Just as well, then.
Car Information


: $326,888

Engine Type


4-cylinder in-line 16-valve Turbocharged

Engine Cap





225kW (302 bhp) / 5800 rpm



400 Nm / 4000 rpm




Acceleration (0-100 km/h)



Top Speed



Fuel consumption



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merc  mercedes  mercedes amg  amg  glb  glb-class  glb35  mercedes glb