TECHNOLOGY

Published in TECHNOLOGY

Mercedes-Benz GLC SUV gets big tech upgrades in latest redesign

Mar 03, 2019 Hit: 128 Written by 
The redesigned GLC will debut this March in Geneva.
The redesigned GLC will debut this March in Geneva. Photo courtesy of Mercedes-Benz

Mercedes-Benz’s redesigned GLC SUV will celebrate its world premiere at the Geneva Motor Show in March and will go on sale in the U.S. by late 2019.

With its distinctive appearance, new operating system, innovative driver assistance systems and a new, enhanced engine, the GLC offers the best from the world of Mercedes-Benz. The exterior design captivates with its wide and sporty visual appearance. 

Muscularly sculpted surfaces and distinctive details such as the chrome elements, which now run from the front to the rear end, the redesigned headlamps and the heavily contoured radiator grille ensure a strong off-road character.

The interior combines luxury and user-friendliness in an uncompromising way with a larger display. In addition, the latest generation of the Mercedes-Benz User Experience (MBUX) multimedia system impresses with intuitive and versatile operating options such as touch and the optimized Voice Control system. 

The driver assistance systems were considerably expanded and complemented, and the GLC will also be equipped with a new 2.0-liter inline 4-cylinder engine with more output and greater efficiency.

The most important advancements of the GLC

  • MBUX: The combination of the standard touchscreen multimedia display, optional Augmented Video for Navigation, standard intelligent Voice Control available via the "Hey Mercedes” prompt, connectivity and the user interface brings the GLC in line with the latest technological innovations from Mercedes-Benz.
  • Drive system: The GLC will be equipped with the next generation four- cylinder gasoline engine with increased output and significantly lower fuel consumption.
  • Advanced assistance systems: : Active Distance Assist DISTRONIC® and Active Steering Assist provide even more comfort and support to help the driver to keep a safe distance and stay inside the lane. The speed is adjusted automatically ahead of bends or junctions. The risk of potential collisions can be reduced with the help of Active Brake Assist by braking if the driver fails to see oncoming traffic.

MBUX: intuitive operation

Well thought-out, ergonomic, comfortable – these guidelines governed the advancement of the operating and display concepts used in the GLC. The focus is on the interaction with the vehicle and its functions through gestures and movements, touch or the Voice Control system. This is made possible by the latest multimedia system generation, Mercedes-Benz User Experience (MBUX), which is characterized by intuitive logic and a wide range of operating functionality. Overall, the interplay of the touchscreen display, Augmented Video for Navigation, the intelligent Voice Control and the user interface sets a new benchmark for industry standards.

There are a total of five different ways to interact with the multimedia system of the GLC:

  • By touch control on the center multimedia display
  • Using the Touch Control Buttons on the multifunction steering wheel
  • With the multifunction Touchpad on the center console
  • Using the gesture/movement recognition of MBUX Interior Assistant
  • By Voice Control, either with the button on the steering wheel or the "Hey Mercedes” prompt

The information the driver needs is shown on two high-resolution displays. The free-standing multimedia display in the center is 10.25 inches, with an optionally available 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster.

The driver can choose from three individual representations to best suit the mood of the interior: “Classic” is an advancement of the familiar Mercedes- Benz design, “Sport” presents a high-contrast and powerful look, “Progressive” visualizes high-tech modernity.

Another effortless way of operating the multimedia system is with the MBUX Interior Assistant. A camera in the overhead control panel captures the movements of the hand as it approaches the touchscreen or the touchpad on the center console. The system makes a distinction between the gestures of the driver and the front passenger, which allows the user to interact with the media display by highlighting or enlarging individual elements. The reading light can also be switched on and off by hand movement recognition. To this end, the light in the overhead control panel follows the movement when the driver is looking for something on the front passenger seat, for example. In addition, there is the option of setting a favorite function of the multimedia system by a specific gesture.

Another highlight in conjunction with MBUX is the optional Augmented Video for Navigation, which complements the navigation in a useful and very unique way. A camera in front of the rearview mirror captures the surroundings and automatically shows information on the multimedia display that integrates with the video image. This includes traffic signs, information about where to make a turn or house numbers. This makes searching for a given address, for example, very easy.

The revised Voice Control system makes operation even more convenient and natural. By voice command, the driver can have the system read out text messages, operate the audio systems or access vehicle functions such as the climate control system. The system requires no memorized commands – the user has the freedom to phrase the desired destination address or to ask a question about the weather report off-the-cuff with natural language. The driver can activate the Voice Control with the "Hey Mercedes” prompt or with the button on the steering wheel. Topping off the new interior details is the redesigned KEYLESS-START function, using the turbine-look start-stop button.

The user can select and activate the drive modes via the DYNAMIC SELECT switch on the center console. The multimedia display shows different drive modes in line with the particular equipment. The driver can select from “Comfort,” “ECO,” “Sport,” “Sport +” and “Individual” for customizing the steering, the suspension or the powertrain.

DYNAMIC SELECT

An SUV that lives up to its name -- as usual, the GLC is convincing on almost any type of ground and in the most adverse weather conditions. The DYNAMIC SELECT system with expanded functions responds to the individual requests of the driver with regard to the handling and the requirements posed by the particular road conditions. The 4MATIC all-wheel drive has also been newly developed from the ground up. The three-stage design of ESP® with a wider spread now offers even more dynamics in the “Sport” and “Sport +” drive modes, once again proving the versatility of the GLC.

Driving assistance systems: safe support

In Germany, 85% of customers cite "safety" as the top characteristic when it comes to the GLC – and besides the typical SUV traits, this is due to the intelligent driver assistance systems. The scope and level in the new model have been advanced, thus enhancing driver support with regard to safety and comfort. The available Driver Assistance Package in the GLC includes, for example:

  • Active Distance Assist DISTRONIC® with the functions:
    • Braking for stationary vehicles
    • Expanded automatic restarting in a traffic jam in conjunction with Active Parking Assist and navigation
  • Active Steering Assist with the functions:
    • Active Emergency Stop Assist – with automatic unlocking and sending of an SOS call to the MB Emergency Call Center after vehicle comes to a stop in the event that the driver is unresponsive while Active Steering Assist is active
    • Active Lane Change Assist in conjunction with navigation
    • Active Speed Limit Assist with response to change in speed limit in conjunction with Traffic Sign Assist
  • Route-Based Speed Adaptation adjusts ahead of bends, roundabouts and toll plazas, as well as before making a turn or exiting a highway; reduction of vehicle speed also for route event “end of traffic jam,” in conjunction with navigation
    • Evasive Steering Assist
    • Active Lane Keeping Assist
    • Active Blind Spot Assist
    • Active Brake Assist with Cross-Traffic Function
    • PRE-SAFE® PLUS

When Active Distance Assist DISTRONIC with Route-Based Speed Adaptation is activated, the new GLC is able to recognize and respond to traffic jams or slow-moving traffic with the help of information from LiveTraffic before the driver becomes aware of this traffic obstruction. When a traffic jam is detected (and if the driver does not choose a different response), DISTRONIC reduces the speed as a precaution. This is complemented by an improved Active Lane Keeping Assist as well as by additional functions of Active Emergency Stop Assist.

Active Brake Assist with Cross-Traffic Function reduces the risk of a potential accident when making a turn, for example, if the driver fails to see oncoming vehicles. If there is a danger of a collision with oncoming traffic when making a turn across the road, the GLC can brake at the speeds typical of such maneuvers. Braking intervention takes place if the driver signals the intention to make a turn and the vehicle can brake to a stop before crossing the lane markings. Oncoming vehicles are detected by the long-range radar sensor in the front and the Stereo Multipurpose Camera.

Also possible is the simplified overtaking maneuver (Active Lane Change Assist) with activated Active Distance Assist DISTRONIC and Active Steering Assist. When the driver activates the turn indicator at speeds above 50 mph on multi-lane roads, the system can help with changing lanes.

The Exit Warning Function of Blind Spot Assist reduces the risk of failing to see an approaching vehicle or cyclist when opening the door. The Exit Warning Function is only active when the vehicle is stopped. When the driver or a passenger opens the door and a vehicle is approaching, the system emits a visual and audible warning. The function is active for up to three minutes after switching off the engine. In conjunction with the ambient light, the lights of the door handle recess and the trim illumination flashes red.

Active Parking Assist is also optionally available. After pushing the button for Active Parking Assist and at speeds below 20 mph, the system shows all identified parking spaces in the immediate surroundings on the multimedia display. The driver selects the parking maneuver with the Touchpad, the touchscreen of the multimedia system or the Touch Control Button on the right of the steering wheel – the system then assists with pulling and reversing into and out of parallel and end-on parking spaces.

Using the standard Blind Spot Assist feature, the parking system can warn the driver of cross-traffic when reversing out of end-on parking spaces, and also initiate automatic braking if necessary. The feature is called Rear Cross-Traffic Alert.

Car-to-X Communication supports the driver by providing up-to-date information and warnings of hazardous situations on the road. The radio-based exchange between vehicles as well as between vehicles and the traffic infrastructure informs the driver visually and/or acoustically of potential hazards.

— Release courtesy of Mercedes-Benz

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Matt Myftiu

Matt Myftiu has been a journalist for two decades with a focus on technology, NASCAR and autos.

Website: www.autotechreviews.com Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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