Official unveiling of the GLC Coupe Concept at Shanghai

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It looks like the recently launched BMW X4 won’t enjoy his solitary status for much longer with the launch of the new Mercedes-Benz GLC Coupe just a matter of time now. 

The official presentation of the Mercedes-Benz GLC Coupe Concept at Shanghai is an important milestone for the Stuttgart brand in more than one way: on the one hand, it clearly previews the future GLC Coupe which will be become the main rival of the BMW X4 and, second, we can also get a strong idea of the general styling cues for the future GLC – the next GLK.

If you don’t believe us, here’s what Gorden Wagener had to say, the Head of Design at Daimler AG: “With its modern and sensual design idiom, the Concept GLC Coupé gives a foretaste of future SUV models from Mercedes-Benz. At the same time, it embraces the typical values of tradition-steeped Mercedes-Benz coupés”.

Even though it still bears the “concept” moniker, the GLC Coupe shown at Shanghai is quoted to be “near production standard”, with the “near” part attributed, mostly, to the four-pipe exhaust system and, probably, to the impressive 21 inch wheels. The similarities between the GLC Coupe and the GLE Coupe are obvious, but the GLC Coupe’s dimensions are a bit more compact: with 4.73 meters in length and a 2.83 meters wheelbase, the smaller Coupe SUV is indeed more compact, but will offer plenty of interior space as well.

As with all coupes of any sorts, the main focus of the GLC Coupe Concept is its design. The front end gives the first taste for the sporty, muscular philosophy that characterizes the whole car: short overhang, upright radiator grille and a twin-blade louvre which wraps around the three point star logo.

Moving further to the back, the bonnet features two powerdomes that perfectly compliment the crease that runs across the side of the car underneath the sleek greenhouse. The SUV DNA is apparent through the underbody protection finished in a dark tone, in strong contrast with the solar-beam paintwork that was chosen for the body.

The GLC Coupe Concept also uses a variation of the new intelligent LED headlights we’ve seen on recent Mercedes-Benz models which incorporate daytime running lights into the same housing.

From the side, there’s no mistaking the GLC Coupe Concept for anything other than a full pedigree coupe: the 1.60 overall height is accentuated by the typically elongated roofline with integrated roof rails and frameless side windows. The roof then drops onto the strong shoulder line above the rear wheel arches flowing seamlessly towards the beautifully sculptured back.

The rear of the GLC Coupe Concept continues the same tradition started by the S-Class Coupe with a very clean and yet powerful design. The lower part is dominated by the wind diffuser and dark matte A-wing which drops to make room for the spectacular exhaust system which is clearly the highlight of the backend. The GLC Coupe Concept features a new taillight design with the two LED upper strips that act as turn indicators.

With all this attention to visual details, the GLC Coupe Concept had to deliver in terms of performance as well. And it sure does. With its V6 biturbo powerplant delivering 367 CP and 520 Nm, the GLC Coupe Concept stays true to its credo: “born to race on every ground”. The performance credentials are underscored by the 9G-TRONIC nine-speed automatic transmission and the 4MATIC permanent four wheel drive system delivering blistering quick accelerations and top level handling. Depending on the transmission mode setting, the tailpipes give off either a commandingly subdued rumble or the passionate sound of a high-powered sports car.

The imminent addition of the GLC Coupe to the Mercedes-Benz range would boost the total numbers of SUVs available to the potential customer to seven, allowing him to choose whatever suits him best.

Concept GLC Coupé
Body type / constructionFour-door, four-seater coupé concept vehicle, frameless side windows
EngineV6 biturbo, direct injection
Displacement cc2,996
Output  kW/hp at rpm270/367@5500
Peak torque (Nm) at rpm520@1400-4000
TransmissionNine-speed automatic transmission 9G-TRONIC, DIRECT SELECT gearshift
Powertrain4MATIC permanent all-wheel drive
Length mm4,727
Width with/without mirrors mm2,151/2,000
Height mm1,593
Wheelbase mm2,827
Track width front/rear mm1,657/1,687
Wheels / tyres front - rear8 J x 21 / 255/50 R 21 - 9.5 J x 21 / 285/45 R 21