2022 Mercedes GLC could use only four-cylinder electrified powertrains [Update]

The Mercedes GLC mid-size SUV that replaced the GLK in June 2015 is waiting for a full model change this year. The second-generation 2022 Mercedes GLC will likely premiere by early 2022, and in this story, we take a look at what we know about the crossover-SUV sibling of the C-Class.

Video Source: youtube.com/CarSpyMedia

Daimler has started distancing itself from six- and eight-cylinder engines in mid-size models to prepare for an all-electric future. Customers desiring performance will be offered hybrid powertrains in the future. The next-gen Mercedes C-Class (W206/S206), including the forthcoming Mercedes-AMG C-Class, is exclusively four-cylinder-engined cars. The company employs electrification with mild-hybrid and plug-in hybrid technologies to achieve higher performance and meet new emission targets.

Next-gen Mercedes GLC 2022 X254 rear
Expect no great strides on the design aspect of the 2022 Mercedes GLC (code: Mercedes X254). Image Source: youtube.com/walkoARTvideos

Mercedes should offer the next-gen Mercedes GLC (codename: Mercedes X254) exclusively with 2.0-liter gasoline and diesel engines. Basic and mid-tier configurations could feature mild-hybrid technology with an ISG that provides as much as 20 hp using energy stored inside an additional battery pack.

2022 Mercedes GLC powertrain

The Mercedes GLC should be offered with only electrified engines, coming straight out of the new C-Class. The mild-hybrid variants are likely to include at least the following 2.0-liter engine options:

Aspect2022 Mercedes GLC 3002022 Mercedes GLC300 4MATIC2022 Mercedes GLC220d 4MATIC2022 Mercedes GLC300d 4MATIC
Transmission9-speed auto9-speed auto9-speed auto9-speed auto
Engine Power258 PS258 PS200 PS265 PS
Engine Torque400 Nm400 Nm440 Nm550 Nm
Electric Power20 PS20 PS20 PS20 PS
Electric Torque200 Nm200 Nm200 Nm200 Nm
Expected specifications of the 2022 Mercedes GLC.

2022 Mercedes GLC Plug-in Hybrid

Higher up the variant ladder, the 2022 GLC would presumably employ the same gasoline and diesel plug-in hybrid powertrains of the new C-Class. As Mercedes takes a staggered approach for the rollout of variants, we expect to see the GLC PHEV listed few months after the launch.

The gasoline plug-in hybrid’s base would be the 2.0-liter variant of the M 254 four-cylinder mill, teamed up with an electric motor that generates 95 kW (127 hp) and 440 Nm (325 Lb.-Ft.). A 25.4 kWh Lithium-ion battery pack providing a zero-emission range of 100 km (62 miles) in WLTP, and possibly around 50 miles as per EPA, would feed the motor electricity. 11 kW (three-phased) on-board charger would be standard and allow three-phase charging at a Wallbox with 11 kW AC power (three-phase). Support for a 55 kW DC charger that allows fully charging up the battery pack in around 30 minutes is expected as an option.

Mercedes plug-in hybrid specs
The 2022 Mercedes GLC plug-in hybrid will likely hire the gasoline and diesel powertrains of the new Mercedes C-Class plug-in hybrid. Image Source: Daimler

Guided by the hardware on the incoming C-Class, Mercedes would install a 9G-TRONIC 9-speed automatic transmission in the next-gen GLC PHEV as standard. The power electronics would be integrated into the transmission housing, which would reduce the installation space.

2022 Mercedes GLC design & features

On the design front, while today’s GLC is drastically different from the GLK, the next-gen is expected to be more of an evolutionary departure. That said, each body panel would be new, and judging from spy shots, it appears to have a longer wheelbase and lower stance for clear differentiation from the Mercedes GLB.

Digital Light & second-gen MBUX

No doubt, the new GLC would download features developed for the W206 C-Class. A main exterior feature should be Digital Light headlamps with three extremely powerful LEDs in each of them. These headlamps should be a premium option over standard LED headlamps, and customers specifying them may get an additional option of projection functions, which enable projecting guidelines or warning symbols on the road ahead.

Mercedes virtual instrument cluster, second-gen MBUX
Like on the new C-Class (pictured), the 2022 Mercedes GLC should come with virtual instrument cluster and touchscreen in the center console as standard. Display sizes & the features would vary as per the configuration. Image: Daimler

The new GLC could become the brand’s first SUV to feature the second-gen MBUX with a fingerprint scanner and a more interactive voice assistant activated by the command “Hey Mercedes.” MBUX Smart Home function will also be included in the new-generation MBUX, allowing the driver to keep a check on and control smart home devices installed at the residence.

A fully digital instrument cluster should come standard, although the display and features could vary, with lower configurations getting a 9.5-inch and higher configurations using an 11.9-inch size display. The same goes for a touchscreen in the center console, a smaller – but still sizeable – 9.5-inch portrait display for the lower configurations, and an 11.9-inch portrait display for the higher configurations.

Source: Youtube/WalkoARTvideos

A spy video from YouTube channel walkoARTvideos has already given a peek at the 2022 GLC interior, revealing its fully digital instrument cluster. The GLC has had a fully digital instrument cluster since Daimler introduced the F-Cell variant in 2017, and the ICE variant received it with the mid-cycle refresh in 2019 as an option. It is expected as a standard feature in the new generation, albeit with the size and functions varying as per the variant.

2022 Mercedes GLC interior spy shot
The 2022 Mercedes GLC should arrive as the first Mercedes SUV with second-gen MBUX (MBUX 2.0). Image Source: YouTube/walkoARTvideos


A slew of improvements that take care of occupants’ well-being can also be expected in the 2022 GLC. This aspect would include the availability of features like Air-Balance Package and Energizing Coach. Air-Balance Package provides the preferred fragrance in the cabin for a refreshed feeling. Energizing Coach suggests a suitable fitness or wellness program based on the vehicle and trip data and the information about sleep quality and stress level from a paired wearable device like a smartwatch. The plug-in hybrid variants may benefit from an additional “Power Nap” program as well, with falling asleep, sleeping, and waking phases that can help the driver recharge himself/herself when making a stop for service or battery recharge.

Rear axle steering & air suspension

For the first time, customers could order the Mercedes GLC with rear-axle steering, an optional feature that reduces the turning circle. The driver would need fewer turns of the steering wheel for a full lock when performing a U-turn or parking. At highway speeds, the rear-axle steering would steer the wheels in the same direction as the front wheels, leading to improved handling stability and safety. Air suspension should be standard in the plug-in hybrid variants, which are expected to be loaded to the brim. However, these electrified variants could suffer from the typical drawback of lower cargo space because of the battery pack location.

Improved surround sensors would offer faster and more intuitive parking system operations on the incoming GLC. A new trailer maneuvering assistant could be optional, one that can handle freely selectable cornering maneuvers up to 90 degrees. Convenience features should include the Easy-Pack tailgate for the remote-operated open/close function of the tailgate with a button on the key fob or the switch in the driver’s door or the tailgate’s release handle.

New Safety systems

A myriad of active and passive safety features would be available in the 2022 Mercedes GLC, with new, upgraded, and carried-over technologies to make it the safest C-Class-based SUV. One of the highlights would be the Pre-Safe Impulse Side, which forms a sort of virtual crumple zone in the event of an accident. The driver or front passenger is moved away from danger before the crash when the system detects an imminent side collision. There are air chambers in the side bolsters of the front seat backrests, and they inflate within the blink of an eye when required.

Besides seeing to it that the vehicle stays in lane at speeds up to 210 km/h (130 mph), improved Active Steering Assist would have the capability of recognizing an additional lane with the 360-degree camera and also forming an emergency corridor. It would offer enhanced performance on country roads and lane centering on highways.

2022 Mercedes GLC FAQs

What is the 2022 Mercedes GLC release date?

The new GLC is expected to premiere by early-2022 and go on sale in the U.S. in the first half of 2022.

What will be the 2022 Mercedes GLC alternatives?

The usual suspects – BMW X3, Audi Q5, 2022 Volvo XC60 & next-gen 2022 Lexus NX.

What will be the base 2022 Mercedes GLC price?

The new Mercedes GLC’s prices should start just under $45,000.

Featured Image Source: youtube.com/walkoARTvideos