China / Innovation

Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class latest in locally made lineup

By Zhuan Ti (China Daily) Updated: 2012-10-15 08:17

 Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class latest in locally made lineup

Launched last week, the new Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class produced at the German carmaker's joint venture in China is expected to be "a fresh, competitive power in the local luxury SUV market". Provided to China Daily

The new locally made Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class launched during the China Open last week is expected to be a fresh, competitive power in the luxury SUV market, said the German carmaker's joint venture in China.

First rolled off the production line at Beijing Benz Automotive Co last month, the latest GLK has a brand-new exterior and improved interior after a mid-cycle facelift, and is set to boost sales in a booming yet competitive market by attracting off-road fans.

The vehicle made a strong impression in last week's media test drive at a motor park in Beijing when it showed its versatility on the bumpy, muddy road and water hazards.

It is equipped with a 3.0-liter V6 engine with maximum output of 245 hp and top torque of 300 Nm. An enhanced 7-speed automatic transmission is standard on the new GLK. The 7G-Tronic Plus transmission enables smoother gear shifting and increases fuel efficiency.

The 4Matic all-time four-wheel-drive system on the new GLK, paired with the 4ETS electronic traction system and other dynamic control measures like the Electronic Stability Program and Acceleration Slip Regulation, significantly improves the traction of the vehicle and helps it maintain stability in extreme situations.

Lighting is another highlight of the new GLK. It features the new eagle-eye headlamp, a family mark in the latest Mercedes-Benz lineup, as well as the feather-shaped taillights. A self-adaptive intelligent light system brings the best lighting on roads, especially at turns. The LED optical fiber contour lights in the control panel add a sense of luxury.

The new car also comes with Mercedes-Benz's cutting-edge Pre-safe and Attention Assist systems offering protection for both drivers and passengers.

With the same wheelbase as the previous model, the new GLK has still found another 40 mm for legroom for back row passengers after smart adjustment of the seat angle. The improved space is designed to cater to the preference of Chinese customers.

It also offers the tailor-made Linguatronic multi-media Chinese voice command system, which allows the driver to communicate with the car easily.

Six exterior color packages and six leather options for the interior are available. Customers can also choose wood or aluminum trim for the central control board.

GLK is a young member of the Mercedes-Benz family, making its global debut in 2008 in Beijing. It was formally launched in China in 2009 and started local production at Beijing Benz last December .

The car goes head to head with the Audi Q5, BMW X3, Volvo XC 60 and Land Rover Freelander. It is the third Mercedes-Benz car produced in China following the C-Class and the long-wheelbase E-Class.

With the new GLK making its debut at the National Tennis Center during the China Open from Sept 29 to Oct 7, all locally made Mercedes-Benz models were on display.

The joint venture Beijing Benz has supported the tennis tournament for six consecutive years.

"To be the sponsor of China Open is a good opportunity for the company to repay society and the public," said Frank Deiss, president and CEO of Beijing Benz. "It is also a good platform for us to showcase our latest products.

"I'm glad to see so many friends love the new GLK and I believe the car will meet the demand for more urban elites after its launch," he said.

(China Daily 10/15/2012 page19)

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