The truth about the Mercedes-Benz GLK 350 model [A review by 234Drive x Naijauto.com]

Apr 07, 2020

Posted by: 234DRIVE x NAIJAUTO.COM

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Introduction

Finally! some Nigerians belong to the school of thought that assumes the Mercedes-Benz GLK is ugly. Two people from an Instagram poll said it is the ugliest Mercedes-Benz model alive today and this is good news because I have always thought every Nigerian has no bad opinion about Mercedes-Benz but is the GLK really ugly? 

angular-front-of-a-red-Mercedes-Benz

I think not because Crank of 234Drive got to spend a day testing and doing a review of the 2013 Mercedes-Benz GLK 350 model, unwinding the car to the tiniest bit to discover the truth about the first-ever compact SUV Mercedes ever produced.

It was in production between 2010 - 2016 until it got succeeded by the GLC CLASS compact SUV. So I am here today to tell you all about the 2013 Mercedes-Benz GLK!

Exterior of the Mercedes-Benz GLK 350 model

The GLK is a compact SUV that is built very much like the G-Wagon SUV. The car has that boxy accent on the exterior but it is way more subtle which makes it very appealing to both male and female buyers.

The Mercedes-Benz GLK for sale in Nigeria gets more love from women because it is one Mercedes-Benz SUV that doesn't look like it's built for just men.

Mercedes-Benz-GLK-front

The grille appears very distinct on the front end blending in with the rectangular-shaped headlights. The rear lights also fit perfectly into the structure of the car. I noticed a very weird effect that the GLK has on the eye, it appears as a small-sized car and a large-sized car depending on the angle you are looking at the car's exterior.

Mercedes-Benz-GLK-rear

This car features a keyless entry that only requires the key fob to be in a close range around the car while you tap the sensor/button on the door handle to lock and unlock this car without stress. For this review, I focused more on the red GLK because it was a full option variant.

The drivetrain of the Mercedes-Benz GLK 350 model

A 3.5-litre V6 engine comes standard on the GLK350 mated onto a 6-speed automatic transmission producing about 302 horsepower.

engine-of-the-Mercedes-Benz-GLK

This 3.5L engine was the best thing to happen to this car because previously, smaller engines were available for the car but it wasn't doing justice enough to how fast the car could go but now, it goes 0 to 60mph in just over 7 seconds.

The drivetrain features a start/stop feature that cancels the fuel consumed by the car to "idling" when the engine is running and the car is not moving and this just makes the car very pocket-friendly in terms of fueling.

The interior of the Mercedes-Benz GLK model

Everybody can predict what a Mercedes-Benz interior looks like these days but the GLK tried it's best to give me a surprise on the inside. It uses a stalk-shifter (gear shifter just behind the steering) and this gives plenty of room to harness around the centre console.

The-stalk-shifter-gear-on-the-GLK

The COMMAND system (infotainment system) doesn't protrude from the dashboard like the other classes instead it is embedded within the dashboard and it gets controlled with a knob placed around the centre console. 
I love the circular air vents for the ventilation system. This circular air vents used to be the pride of Mercedes-Benz cars many years ago, I am happy to see them bringing it back in this modern age because it makes the car classic.

COMMAND-system-on-a-Benz-GLK

The Mercedes-Benz GLK has fine high-quality wooden trims all over the interior because this car is not just a compact SUV, it is a "LUXURY" car in all ramifications. MB-TEX comes standard on all versions of the GLK350 as the upholstery styling stuffed with a sweet-smelling and easy looking leather just for optimum comfort to riders. The rear seat has enough legroom and even the middle rear seat doesn't lack space. 

The-interior-of-a-Mercedes-Benz-GLK

The trunk cargo space can be directly accessed from the main cabin of the car just like regular SUVs. I fitted well into the trunk which contained me just fine.

Crank-fitting-into-the-trunk-of-a-Benz-GLK

This is to tell you that there is enough room back there but not so much like regular SUVs.

Looking at the roof, you will spot a double panelled panoramic sliding glass roof that extends to the rear section of the car. This roof allows plenty of light and natural air circulate around this car while it is in motion. 

The-panoramic-roof-on-a-Benz-GLK

>>> Some other luxury options for you: 7 suggestions for mid-size luxury cars

Mercedes-Benz GLK reliabilty and features

With the Benz GLK 350, you have every safety feature a basic luxury car should have. Collision warning, braking assist, and airbags all around the car. I felt safe when I drove the car from the elegant and simple cockpit design. The ventilation system is just right for Nigeria and it got better when I pushed the "maximum cool" but I almost got frozen even with the way Nigeria is hot this period.

Dashboard-of-a-Benz-GLK

The Benz COMMAND installed on the infotainment makes it possible for you to connect your phone to the car just to sync music, videos and to make calls while driving. The seats are ventilated which happens from within the holes on the seats.

The reverse camera has a very wide and clear view that gives you a good judgement of the blindspots when reversing.

Reverse-camera-on-the-Mercedes-GLK

>>> And you might be asking: Why one should buy a luxury car in Nigeria?

How does it ride?

To start up the car, you can either use the thumb start button or the key option. To use the key, you just have to detach the thumb start button then slot in the key in the rectangular hole to wake the engine from sleep.

I used the thumb start button because it is less stressful and faster. The start-up of the car is smooth and very silent.

On the drive gear, I noticed that the car has slow initial acceleration. It is sluggish until the 3rd gear and it starts to live up to par. This car completely drives like a C-CLASS sedan even though it's a compact SUV and this reminded me of why the car looks big and small at the same time.

Its offroading ability can be easily predicted from the ride height of the car, you won't get stuck anywhere in Nigeria and it uses a rear-wheel drive or all-wheel drive system that makes it a better performing car on the road irrespective of the terrain.

It is very easy to drive and understand. A very soft steering wheel experience is something the GLK can be proud of anywhere. It doesn't have an AMG variant like most other Mercedes car and it made me understand that this car wasn't designed for sporty activities at all unlike its major competitor the BMW X3 which has more impressive performance numbers.

I even tried rushing into a corner with this car and It disappointed me by pushing me all around in the car just because I wanted to make a fast bend. 

Conclusion

Overall, the Mercedes Benz GLK 350 model happens to be in a world of its own. It doesn't even have an AMG engine variant it's own but you can get an AMG styling exterior which is the most expensive option to buy.

The options that vary in this car are the panoramic roof, USB port and different colors of leather on the seats. The GLK is a very good daily car for people that don't rush to destinations because this car can't be pushed around hard like the C-CLASS or E-CLASS due to its poor handling.

>>> With Naijauto.com, you have the most comprehensive reviews of cars, car price lists, useful tips and advice, and latest car news!

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Crank - the head of content for 234DRIVE is a mechanic/car enthusiast/car vlogger that writes and creates relatable motoring experiences. Whenever he lays his hands on any car, he reviews them in depth. He calls himself the 'Educative Car Guy'.

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