More luxury brands are entering the small-crossover segment, including Mercedes-Benz, which expands its lineup of luxury crossovers with the new five-seat GLK-Class. Offered in GLK350 form with a 3.5-liter V-6 engine, it features recognizable Mercedes styling cues as well as available high-tech features.
The GLK350 competes with luxury crossovers like the Acura RDX, BMW X3 and Land Rover LR2. All-wheel-drive models hit dealerships in January, followed by rear-wheel-drive versions in April.
With its angular exterior styling, the GLK350 bears a strong resemblance to its big brother, the GL-Class. The GLK350's large front grille is divided by two horizontal bars, and in the middle is a large Mercedes three-point star. Upright roof pillars make for tall side windows, and the back of the crossover is finished with a liftgate spoiler and twin exhaust outlets.
The GLK350 comes standard with 19-inch alloy wheels; 20-inch rims are optional. The optional Premium package includes a panoramic moonroof and a power liftgate. The Lighting package, meanwhile, adds adaptive bi-xenon headlights, cornering lights and LED taillights.
The GLK350's cabin takes elements from Mercedes-Benz's entry-level C-Class sedan, as it features a similar steering wheel, center control panel and gauge styling. Models equipped with Mercedes' optional Comand system have a knob controller on the center console that's used to navigate menus on the 7.5-inch dash screen. Among knob-based control systems, Comand's interface is one of the more intuitive ones available. The system's screen can show things like radio station information and map data from the navigation system.
The GLK350 has front bucket seats and a three-seat rear bench. Simulated leather upholstery is standard, but real leather is optional. Upscale interior elements include real wood and aluminum trim. The GLK350's cargo area measures 23.3 cubic feet with the backseat up; folding the rear seats yields 54.7 cubic feet of total cargo volume.
Standard features include dual-zone automatic air conditioning, power-adjustable front seats, a single-CD stereo with an auxiliary input jack, cruise control and a tilt/telescoping steering wheel. Options include heated front seats, a CD changer and a backseat entertainment system.
Under the Hood
The GLK350 is powered by a 3.5-liter V-6 engine that produces 268 horsepower and 258 pounds-feet of torque. The engine teams with a seven-speed automatic transmission. The GLK350's maximum towing capacity when properly equipped is 3,500 pounds.
Standard safety equipment includes antilock brakes, side-impact airbags for the front seats, side curtain airbags, an electronic stability system and active head restraints for the front seats.