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Small Edits Equal Large Improvement for the Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class

Aging celebrities know that a few exterior edits can go a long way, and luxury auto brands such as Mercedes-Benz understand that a great nip-and-tuck for an automobile model can do the same thing. For the first time this year, the Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class gets slight, yet very effective, edits.

The new Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class sees the most changes inside its cabin, where much more luxurious materials are used than in the previous model. Featured are Mercedes-Benz traditional large chrome vents, better quality materials, a large amount of wood trim, and a general overall improved ambiance. The front seats of the new GLK-Class are quite roomy, but rear seat legroom is rather pinched. For the best use of space, it’s advisable to use the rear seat for holding children, or simply fold it down to hold shopping items or groceries. When it’s folded, cargo space increase from 35 feet to an impressive 66 cubic feet.

On its exterior, the new SUV looks quite similar to the way it first appeared in 2010, with styling cues from the larger Mercedes-Benz G-Class and Mercedes-Benz GL-Class. It does, however, look rather softened and simplified overall, in a very positive way. New LED and fiber optic taillights are featured, but the vehicle’s sharp lines are still left over from the original model.

Rather wagon-like in appearance and nearly a foot shorter than the larger Mercedes-Benz M-Class sedan, this year’s GLK-Class receives an improved, well-damped steering wheel and an improved suspension, which gives it the ability to make sharp turns effortlessly. This is due, in part, to the lack of roominess you’ll find in its backseat.

Underneath the vehicle’s hood, you’ll find a rather powerful new 3.5-liter DOHC V6 that gets a boost of 34 horsepower versus last year’s model (putting it up to 302 horsepower), despite the fact that its engine is the same size as the one before. Paired with this engine is a seven-speed automatic transmission as standard, with manual paddle-shifters mounted on the steering wheel. This combination helps the vehicle achieve 60 mph in 6.4 seconds, which is quite impressive for an SUV. In short, though it’s certainly powerful, the SUV is not all brawn. It’s truly fun to drive, and it’s certainly nice to sit in for a while.

Fuel economy ratings come in at 19 mpg city/24 mpg highway and is paired with such features as an engine stop/start system to keep fuel use frugal. Later in the 2013 model year, the Mercedes-Benz GLK250 BlueTec will be the first compact luxury crossover SUV featuring a diesel engine, and it should have the best fuel economy ratings in its segment.

The 2013 Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class will be available in two main trims (not counting the diesel variant): the base GLK350 trim with RWD and standard features, starting at $37,090, and the GLK350 4Matic model, featuring all-wheel drive and starting at $39,090. Though the SUV boasts several new standard features, its optional features are much more impressive. These, however,  can be quite pricey when you add them all up.

Overall, this year’s GLK-Class is more luxurious and powerful than ever before. For more information about the 2013 Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class, or any other new SUV models, be sure to check out our informative reviews, and don’t forget to check back often for more updates!

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