Mercedes-Benz GLK opens the winter season

Article by Christian Andrei, on August 26, 2010

Shortly it will be time to go to the ski slopes once more, and the users of Mercedes versions with the fixed all-wheel-drive system 4MATIC can be confident as they set out toward their selected winter getaway, due to the fact that the performance of the drive arrangement on snow- or ice-packed roads truly remarkable.

Mercedes-Benz shows the high traction reserves together with outstanding directional stability and safety in the latest GLK at its 4MATIC system.

In acute winter settings at a height of 2500 meters on the Austrian Timmelsjoch High Alpine Road this compact SUV is indicating that its driving dynamics belong to a class all their own.

Like the example of the 4MATIC's fine-tuning on a dry or wet road, directional stability and thus the dynamic safety of the GLK versions is always at the forefront when wintry situations also prevail.

The base 4MATIC mechanism with a 45:55 percent torque divided between the front and rear axles together with the multiple-disc restricted-slip center differential with a fundamental locking torque of 50 Nm add up to a perfect solution. This fundamental design provides high traction because, on the one hand, of the dynamic transfer in axle load toward the rear axle that happens during sprint is utilized to provide extra drive torque to the back.

In the meantime, the multiple-disc restricted-slip center differential can also variably move the drive torque from 30 to 70 or 70 to 30 percent between the front and rear axle, whenever the conditions of the road so order.

Because of this, the electronic control systems ESP, 4ETS or ASR can get involved as late as possible; the mass of the torque is transformed into traction on roads that have become slippery. Although these interventions are practically unnoticeable, the drivers receive instant info if they have reached the driving limit.

When this occurs, there will be a flashing of a yellow warning light in the instrument panel, an obvious indication to alter their driving style to fit the conditions of the road.

The configuration highlighting a fixed design mechanism has essential advantages in comparison with other systems that initially need to diagnose an absence of traction before the activation of their 4x4 all-wheel drive. On the other hand, the 4MATIC installed on the GLK will have already utilized this valuable moment to convey drive torque through the wheels to the road.

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