The New 2023 Mercedes GLC Is Packed With Tech, Mild Hybrid

There is a lot riding on Mercedes-Benz getting the Mercedes 2023 GLC right. The small SUV has been the bestselling model from Mercedes ever. The company says it sold 2.5 million of the small crossovers since 2008, including the preceding Mercedes GLK and GLC models. It has always been affordable, starting in the mod-$40,000 range, luxurious, and an award winner, winning CNET’s Road Show’s Best Small Luxury SUV award, and others.

Now, the company is teasing us with new images from winter testing in Sweden of a camouflaged 2023 GLC.

The new 2023 Mercedes GLC in winter testing in Sweden.
The new 2023 Mercedes GLC in winter testing | Mercedes-Benz

Though Mercedes considers the GLC an SUV, it also made a “coupe” version of it, which looks more like a beefy four-door sedan than a coupe, which replaced the C-Class. There’s no word yet on whether the new generation will be offered in a coupe version but we do hope that Benz brings back the stupendously-quick Mercedes-AMG GLC 63 S version. While the 63 S hot rod costs nearly $100,000, it has a 503-hp twin-turbo V8, and is one of the quickest coupes, or SUVs, or tall four-door vehicles you can buy.

The 2023 Mercedes GLC testing.

But the base model 2022 Mercedes GLC is far from “base,” and includes all of the amenities you would expect in the class.

The GLC is a reliable and capable small luxury SUV

Internally, and to Mercedes fans, the new GLC is called the 254, and it’s based on the 253 series. It was first introduced in 2015 as a 2016 model and replaced the blocky, but popular, GLK-Class SUV. Overall, the GLC earned a recommendation from Consumer Reports for reliability. It is also upscale and comes with all the entry-level luxury touches you’d expect like leather, navigation, and a stately interior.

The 2022 Mercedes GLC | Mercedes-Benz

Early production versions of the current generation, like the 2016 GLC, had a few recalls and owners complained to Consumer Reports that body panels squeaked and there were some brake issues. But, those issues were fixed as production ramped up. By 2021, it was rated one of the best on the market by Consumer Reports in its class.

All of Mercedes SUVs with any off-road ability at all start with a “G,” which stands for Gelandewagen, or “off-road vehicle.” The “C” in the GLC means that it’s the smallest of the G class SUVs. Mercedes uses a “C” like BMW uses a 3 in its BMW X3 competitor for the GLC.

The 254 series could be ordered with a turbo four-cylinder for a base price $43,850, but factory hot-rodded versions by AMG, which include the AMG 43 4MATIC and the GLC 63 and GLC 63 S 4MATIC+ could reach $100,000, and hit 60 mph in less than four seconds. 4Matic is Mercedes-speak for all-wheel drive.

The 2023 Mercedes GLC will feature a hybrid power boost

The 2022 GLC base motor is a 2.0-liter turbo four cylinder with 255 hp. Mercedes has used the same motor in many of C-class cars.

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The new GLC will feature the same motor, but with even more boost. The new power unit will have an electrified starter-alternator integrated into the transmission that will boost output by 23 hp and 147 lb-ft of torque. The 2022 GLC was never considered slow, but the new power should help.

Mercedes is touting the tech in the 2023 GLC

The 2023 GLC versions are being tested in Sweden now, but the big news is the new technology Benz is packing into its small SUV.

Mercedes has a lot riding on the 2023 GLC, which is one of its best sellers. Here, it's shown in winter testing.
The 2023 Mercedes GLC testing | Mercedes-Benz

The GLC will have a new version of Active Distance Assist DISTRONIC. The new version of Mercedes active cruise control allows the company to maintain a preset distance from vehicle in front of you, but now it can also identify stationary vehicles at speeds up to 60 mph, compared to the old version’s 37 mph.

The new GLC will also help you keep your lane at some insane speeds. The Active Sterring Assists will help you stay in your late at speeds of up to 130 mph by using a new 360-degree camera.

It will recognize signs. The new Traffic Sign Assistant can recognize warning signs like construction signs, and want you if missed a stop sign, for example.

It helps you park. The new parking systems have improved sensors that give you even more support, including emergency braking, when parking.