Originally published March 23, 2016 on autoTRADER.ca

The march of the swoopy SUVs continues unabated. While the idea of an all-wheel-drive utility vehicle compromised by a fastback roofline might seem a tenuous prospect to the left-brained among us, the growing popularity of these premium-branded niche vehicles suggests form over function wins in this corner. Mercedes-Benz showed the GLC Coupe at the NYIAS, which follows the styling cues adopted by big-brother GLE Coupe that was launched last year. And like that larger crossover, the GLC Coupe rides on 20-inch wheels, giving it a firm stance and sense of purpose.

Sharing its platform and mechanicals with the regular GLC crossover, the Coupe is 81 mm longer and 41 mm lower. From the A-pillars forward, the GLC Coupe is identical to its sibling, but from there back the roof gently sweeps down to a small duck-tailed spoiler and large taillights that draw inspiration from the S-Class Coupe. It’s a well-resolved piece (as is the GLE Coupe), not sporting the somewhat ungainly disposition of the BMW X6 and X4 for which these Mercs are direct competitors.

The GLC Coupe runs with a 2.0L turbo four making 241 hp and 273 lb-ft, mated to Benz’s new 9-speed 9G-Tronic transmission. 4Matic all-wheel drive will be standard fare, along with quicker steering and off-road suspension. Air Body Control air suspension is available.

Inside, the GLC Coupe gets its own dashboard treatment with distinctive flowing architecture that moves the cabin experience up a notch. As would be expected, the GLC Coupe will be available with a full suite of safety kit along with the semi-autonomous pairing of Distronic Plus (adaptive cruise control) with Steering Assist. Look for the 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLC Coupe in early 2017.

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