Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class

The Twins by the Triple Pointed Stars

I traveled to the famous city of watches and banks: Geneva, Switzerland, to test the company's bread-and-butter GLK 350 and G63 AMG on a variety of roads through the French Alps. I am sure that many of you are quite excited to know about the new G63 AMG. So if you're an automotive aficionado, then little luxury crossovers perhaps don't light your inner candle, but sit back on your sofa so I can enlighten you!

The Mercedes-Benz GLK 350

"Truly Unexpected"

"Progression Matters"

If I recall my first encounter with the GLK, it was back in Salalah in the Sultanate of Oman in 2008. It was a good experience to tender that mini SUV from Mercedes on the rocky mountains of Oman, with its sand dunes, mud and water.

Now what we have here is a completely redesigned Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class that went on sale this summer. The 2013 GLK-Class drops the box shape for more angular, athletic lines that give it a more agile look than its predecessor. Unveiled at the 2012 New York International Motor Show, the new GLK has been redesigned for people who want a luxury SUV in a smaller package.

The new GLK will be offered with a rear-wheel-drive GLK 350 and all-wheel-drive GLK350 4MATIC and both are powered by a 3.5 liter, V6 gasoline engine that produces 302 hp (34 hp more than the first generation). Mercedes-Benz calculates approximately the 0-100 kph time for the GLK 350 to be merely in 6.6 seconds. It comes with a 7-speed automatic transmission.

What's New?
The new features introduced are the new headlights, chrome-framed LED daytime running lights and a chrome-trimmed grille that give the GLK-Class a stunning look. From the back we have new taillights, a new bumper, a chrome skid plate and chrome-plated tailpipe trim.

Inside the cockpit the dashboard has been redesigned, together with a new color instrument cluster display, round air vents and extensive use of wood trim. A 5.8-inch color display is standard, with a larger, 7-inch display which is optional. The latter includes rearview camera, navigation and Mercedes-Benz's COMAND user interface.

Stop/Start feature is also new on the 2013 GLK. Other new standard technologies include Attention Assist and Adaptive Brakes (hill assist or hill descent control, brake drying and pre-charging). Further options such as Adaptive High Beam, Lane Keeping, Active Blind Spot, Distronic Plus (rear end collision avoidance), Parktronic and power panorama sunroof are also new to the second generation GLK.

Remarkable Off-Road Capabilities
But this small crossover isn't just running on asphalt roads or well maintained highways. The GLK was redesigned with off-road capabilities on purpose. The approach and departure angles and ground clearance are engineered to ensure the vehicle can handle pavement departures. In June 2010, I personally attended the Dead Sea trek which was held in Jordan, and believe me folks, I couldn't believe at that time what the GLK was capable of doing off-road! My mind also goes back to when Frank Bernthaler introduced us to the first GLK back in Salalah, when he clearly said, "Expect the unexpected," and at that time my mind couldn't trust such a sentence. When I was aboard the GLK, I shouted loudly, "TRULY UNEXPECTED!"

Verdict
At the end of the day, the GLK is a huge step up in several straightforward ways. With its premium compact utility market, though, Mercedes has to make more progress in sales. Main competitors are Audi Q5, BMW X3 and Volvo XC60.

The Mercedes-Benz G63 AMG

"There's no damn motive for this car to survive. And that's why people love it!"

"Originally built for the army back in 1972, the G-Wagon was first sold to the public in 1979"

The most perfectly romantic place ever for a couple: where could it be? It would have to be either a beach or mountain resort. I had my first drive of the new G63 AMG at a small ski resort town, La Clusaz, in the valley of the French Alps, which is all but deserted. Spring has defrosted the whole region and it is vaporously silent with the exclusion of a gushing river flow.

It's an exceptionally capable off-roader, but few ever see so much as it covered in dust. The G-Wagon just had one of its best sales years ever in 2011. And given its practical origins and mission, models like the 2013 Mercedes G63 AMG I just shoved around continue to make very small sense, but linger a heck of a lot of fun and I personally had a blast!

Every AMG model in the firm has been getting spirit relocation, and the new G63 AMG, replacing the G55 AMG, deploys a version of AMG's new 5.5 liter V-8 twin-turbo tuned to make 544 hp. The engine is mated to an AMG-optimized version of Benz's seven-speed automatic. Also, like the other AMG models, the G63 gets a stop/start system to help it toss down gas drops. The G550 is also still available and continues with the naturally aspirated 382-hp, 5.5 liter V-8, fitted to a seven-speed automatic. There's also a V-12-powered G65, which has been manufactured for the occasion of the 45thAnniversary of AMG.

Sometimes you don't need to speak of its off-road capabilities, as this SUV is one of a kind. And I think the pictures out here will answer your questions.

What's new?
The new features are the G63 AMG's revised front fascia with its new grille and larger bumper inlets, plus the addition of LED daytime running lights and new mirrors across the G-Class line. The new color screen that looks like a mini iPad resting on the center dash, as will the redesigned center console and instrument cluster. The new standard safety items on the AMG version include Parktronic, Blind Spot Assist, Distronic Plus and Hill Start assist.

Verdict
If you see that the AMG version is a bit over your budget, there is the less intensive G550. It is equipped with a 388-bhp 5.5 liter V-8. And to let you know, the 2013 model year G550 is still quite proficient, with just a matter of less power and options. Sales started this summer so jump to your closest dealer in the Middle East to check out that lively monster!

  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (1)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (10)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (11)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (12)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (13)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (14)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (15)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (16)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (17)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (18)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (19)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (2)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (20)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (21)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (22)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (23)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (24)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (25)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (26)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (27)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (28)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (29)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (3)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (30)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (31)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (32)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (33)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (34)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (35)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (36)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (37)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (38)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (39)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (4)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (40)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (5)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (6)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (7)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (8)
  • Mercedes GLK-Class and G-Class (9)

Subscriptions

Raed

Autoshows Calendar

Upcoming Articles

  • Global Drive: 2018 Rolls Royce Phantom
  • Global Drive: 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk
  • Global Drive: 2018 Jaguar XJR575
  • Editors' Choice: Range Rover Velar
  • Editors' Choice: Lexus LC500h
  • Editors' Choice: Peugeot 3008
  • Editors' Choice: Cadillac CT6
  • Special Feature: Renault Zoe Electric