Compact SUVs have to tick a few boxes, and practicality usually pulls the short straw considering their slight size. The Mercedes-AMG GLB 35 exists to try and prove that theory wrong, and so buyers can specify a third row of seating if they wish, without having to compromise on the AMG's fun-to-drive character or giving up any of its opulence. Sure, there's less space for cargo, but does that matter in an ultra-niche segment where some rivals have thrown in the towel while the GLB 35 remains? The Land Rover Range Rover Evoque HSE is no more and the US doesn't get an R version of the Volkswagen Tiguan, so what is there to stop the GLB from proclaiming superiority?
See trim levels and configurations:
|AMG GLB 35 4MATIC||
2.0L Turbo Inline-4 Gas
In terms of a release date for the Mercedes-AMG GLB 35, the automaker has committed to delivering in the USA "later in 2023". It's safe to assume it will arrive in the second part of the year.
While the current model has an MSRP of $51,500, a price for the 2024 Mercedes-AMG GLB 35 SUV has yet to be confirmed. Given the updates made and the variety of tweaks to the mechanics, a few thousand dollars is a likely increase, so expect a starting cost of around $53k, at least, before options.
There isn't much to compare the unique AMG GLB 35 to, at present, with Audi's Q3 no longer getting the sport treatment and the BMW X2 being discontinued after 2023 - neither of these can configure seven seats. The Range Rover Evoque starts in a similar ballpark as the GLB 35, but it's down on power and seats only five. Buyers in the USA could cross-shop with the Mini Countryman in JCW spec, and with all the bells and whistles, it would come to a similar figure. Still, only two rows of seating are available. Meanwhile, the VW Tiguan offers the extra row of seats, but lacks a performance derivative to challenge AMG's might.
Exterior updates to the Mercedes-AMG GLB 35 are not particularly conspicuous, but there are a few differences the eagle-eyed may observe. This includes a fresher front fascia design that houses LED headlights and new signature lighting; the rear end sports standard LEDs and these clusters have also been tweaked a little. Most obvious is that the AMG emblem now sits proudly on the hood of the GLB 35 to identify it from lesser models.
As standard, 19-inch wheels fill the arches, but for 2024, there are new alloy wheels available, including a 19-inch ten-spoke AMG wheel in matte black with a machined surface finish, and a choice of 20-inch wheels with a five-twin-spoke design. The AMG body styling kit is still equipped, and a panorama roof and various AMG exterior packages are available on the options list.
There's no information on what the exterior colors for the Mercedes-AMG GLB 35 will be, so we're assuming the standard palette will carry over. This includes a few no-cost options, the stunning Rose Gold metallic, and Manufaktur Patagonia Red - the GLB-Class lineup gets access to a new Spectral Blue Metallic, which could also carry over.
In terms of dimensions for the new Mercedes-AMG GLB 35 SUV, these are likely to be in line with the 2023 model. If there are any changes due to styling updates, it's likely to be minimal. As such, measurements for the 2024 model will look similar to these: Overall legnth of 183.1 inches, a width of 79.5 inches, a height of 65.4 inches, and a wheelbase of 111.4 inches.
Curb weight will likely be most affected, given the added gadgetry for the mild-hybrid system. Expect the 2024 GLB 35 to weigh more than the current model's 3,869 pounds.
The biggest change for the upcoming model year is in what lies under the hood. The 2024 AMG GLB 35 still uses a familiar engine - a 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-four - with specs of 302 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque, but it's now mated to a 48-volt mild-hybrid assist setup that is designed to enhance efficiency by feeding back energy recuperated through braking and coasting. The system works to smooth over stop/start technology, too, and provide a more seamless experience overall. An AMG Speedshift eight-speed dual-clutch tranmission does duty, and sends power to all four wheels via the 4Matic AWD setup.
Despite outputs not being any different, there is 13 hp additionally available for boost, under "certain conditions," according to the automaker. Strangely, the manufacturer also estimates a slower 0-60 sprint for the 2024 GLB 35; 2023 models could manage the dash in 5.2 seconds, where the latest model seemingly needs two-tenths of a second longer. Still, the GLB 35 should provide a pleasant ride, with four-wheel independent suspension tuned for a good balance between sporty and comfortable.
We've not been made privy to whether the mild-hybrid system provides any efficiency gains just yet, and it may well be offset against a higher curb weight. Either way, we can hope for an improvement on the current GLB 35's mpg figures, which are listed as 21/27/23 mpg, city/highway/combined.
At the very least, the 2024 AMG GLB 35 should attain a range of around 365 miles with its 15.9-gallon gas tank filled.
The changes to the interior of the Mercedes-AMG GLB 35 are minimal, whereas the standard GLB-Class SUV feels like a bigger step up for 2024. The AMG GLB 35 already had the twin 10.25-inch screens as standard, which the automaker has bestowed on the lesser GLBs for 2024, so the tweaks here are a little less overt. Nonetheless, there is a newly standard AMG Performance steering wheel with AMG Drive Unit buttons fitted as standard - the point of this setup is to promote eyes on the road while changing up the AMG drive modes.
As before, the MBUX infotainment system is standard with AMG-specific design cues and a few more functions than in the base cars. For 2024, the GLB 35 gets wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as standard, and there are more USB ports added. On the options list for the new model year is the latest generation of parking assists, allowing a 360-degree visualization when in camera-assisted parallel parking mode.
In terms of seating, the new AMG GLB 35 gets standard sport seats but there are some new upholstery choices, including MB-Tex in Sage Grey/Black and leather in a Red/Black combination. Buyers can also opt for new AMG Performance seats up front or select from a variety of all-new interior trim, which includes open-pore Brown Linden Wood. As before, a third seating row is available.
When it comes to cargo space, the Mercedes-AMG GLB 35 has either sufficient space, or not much at all, depending on whether you've configured five or seven seats - this isn't likely to change for the 2024 iteration. With the third row in place, you get just 5.2 cubes, which opens up to 12.4 cubes when those are stowed. Fold down both rows and there's 62 cubes up for grabs.
The most popular competitors of 2024 Mercedes-AMG GLB 35: