Mercedes-Benz is set to show its Concept GLC Coupe at the Shanghai Auto Show, proving that the automaker isn’t backing down from a challenge. The Concept GLC Coupe is a near-production-standard compact model that uses the popular GLE Coupe formula. This dynamic show car features the coupe’s styling but with the sensual design premise of future SUV generations.
The combination is appealing in itself but it comes with strong details. It features a twin-blade radiator grille, powerdomes on the bonnet, and a four-pipe exhaust system that form an aesthetic contrast to the harmonious, nearly organic main body. Going off-road won’t be a problem with the Concept GLC Coupe as it comes with front and rear underbody protection, bigger ground clearance, 21-inch tires, and side running boards.
The GLE Coupe was warmly received as a highly practical SUV and impressive coupe so Mercedes-Benz is hoping to repeat its success with the Concept GLC Coupe. What’s noticeable is that the near-production-standard show car belongs to a more compact segment because it measures 4.73-metres long and has a 2.83-metre wheelbase.
It also comes with a prominent and muscular main body section, extended greenhouse and 21-inch wheels. With these proportions, the Concept GLC Coupe is clearly a standout due to its sporty and youthful characteristic merged with its off-road capabilities. At its front, the Concept GLC Coupe has a short, crisp overhang with upright radiator grille and twin-blade louvre – typical of sporty models from Mercedes-Benz.
The Concept GLC Coupe seems to shout the credo "Born to race on every ground” with its powerdomes on the bonnet, the sweeping lines of the A-wing under the radiator grille, the big side air intakes and the aesthetically prominent underbody protection.
This feature is characteristic of an SUV, seen here in silver shadow to act as an appealing counterpoint to the solar-beam paintwork and the all-round claddings in matt gun metal magno paintwork. It is equipped with stunning LED headlamps that evoke the idea of light sculptures and that give the Concept GLC Coupe its expressive look.
All of its functions are found together. For instance, the daytime running lamps and turn indicators utilize the upper strip inserts, referred to as "eyebrows" by the designers. Underneath these are 3 rotating lenses, which seem to positively float in the deep, three-dimensional space and which are capable of adjusting to the environment and can optimally illuminate either the road or terrain.
Oncoming traffic won’t be blinded by these headlamps whether they’re in lower beam, upper beam, cornering light or active light mode. This is made possible by blanking out the light cone in the area of oncoming vehicles. The coupe and the SUV have very contrasting features but the automaker was able to merge these characteristics smoothly.
How Mercedes-Benz achieved it is revealed in a side view of the slightly under 1.60-metre-high Concept GLC Coupe that emphasizes the elongated roof line typical of a sports coupe. This quality is even more accentuated by the integrated roof rails and fully recessed door handles as well as the squat greenhouse with its frameless side windows that blend perfectly into the vehicle's flanks.
The Concept GLC Coupe is incredibly dynamic with the extreme proportions stemming from the coming together of the high beltline, broad shoulders and highlighted wheel lips. This arrangement is made all the more obvious with the drawn-in waist between the dropping line and the lower, rearwards ascending light-catching contour.
Its SUV features include the sill extensions that were inspired by the side running boards on a classic SUV. On the same level as the outside edge of the body, the large 21-inch wheels come with large, heavily profiled tires that when merged with the comparatively high ground clearance, plays up the sportily dynamic off-road ambitions of the Concept GLC Coupe.
From the back, the 2-metre-wide Concept GLC Coupe shows off the wide, muscular shoulders with harmoniously modelled wheel arches that hold the 53.3 cm (21-inch) wheels with 285/45 R 21 wide-base tires. Considered a visual highpoint are the 4 polished stainless-steel tailpipes of the exhaust system.
The tailpipes make the coupe appear sportier as they are installed in pairs above an A-wing similar to the one at the front and laden with the expected underbody protection. The Concept GLC Coupe’s drive technology is as exciting. It is equipped with a V6 powerplant that delivers 367 hp and 520 Nm.
Mostly seen with AMG sports models, the direct-injection biturbo engine is partnered with a 9G-TRONIC nine-speed automatic transmission and 4MATIC permanent all-wheel drive.
As a result, the show car is capable of emphatic acceleration while providing the impressive audible notes. The tailpipes may produce a masterfully subdued rumble or the fervent sound of a high-powered sports car, depending on the transmission mode setting. [source: Mercedes-Benz]