Mercedes has a knack for making bank in segments where profits can be slim and competition cutthroat. Their GLB crossover plays in such an environment but, with a handsome square jaw and approachable price point, it enjoys a healthy customer base. Now, the Three-Pointed Star appears to be refreshing the model for the upcoming model year.
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These spy shots clearly show the areas in which Mercedes will be tweaking the GLB. As with most midcycle facelifts, changes are likely to be limited to lighting and fasciae, leaving expensive-to-alter hard points such as window and door openings for future overhauls. The front bumper, grille, and headlights are certain to undergo some changes, for example. Around back, a skiff of camouflage around the taillights strongly suggest a new inner graphic light signature is on the way.
Interestingly, these changes to the GLB are on the heels of comments made by Mercedes boss Ola Källenius who told media there will be a shrinking of the Benz model range in the compact class, led by the demise of A-Class and B-Class vehicles . Never one to leave money on the table, Merc will continue with the CLA Coupé, CLA Shooting Brake, GLA and — as evidenced by these spy shots — the GLB.
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Crossover and SUV models play an important role for Mercedes — and most manufacturers — thanks to their propensity of padding the balance sheet with fat profits. In fact, SUVs accounted for 72 percent of Mercedes-Benz Canada sales last year. The size-larger GLC was Merc’s top-selling model in Canada for the first half of 2022, if you’re wondering.
The GLB has been attracting customers who like its squared-off visage, a look which is markedly different from the rounded appearance of the GLA. While it would definitely be a bridge too far to call the GLB a mini G-Wagen, it is indeed handsome in its own sort of way. In Canada, the GLB currently starts at $47,000 for the model with a 221-horsepower engine. The AMG-branded variant, priced twelve grand higher, packs more than 300 ponies under its rectilinear hood.