Mercedes GLB And EQB Review | These 7-seat SUVs Will Surprise You!

  • Nov 30, 2022
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The GLB and EQB will be the most affordable 7-Seat SUVs from Mercedes. But are they good value for money?

The baby GLS is here and the great thing is Mercedes is not only bringing the GLB but also its electric version the EQB. These two are going to be the most affordable seven-seat SUVs that Mercedes will sell in India–but there is a caveat. Unfortunately, both these cars are going to be full Imports, so their prices are expected to be in the region of Rs 66-70 lakh for the GLB and Rs 80 lakh for the EQB (ex-showroom), making them as expensive as the current GLC. Can they offer as much value as well?

Indeed a baby GLS


 

GLB

EQB

GLC

Length

4646mm

4684mm

4658mm

Width

1850mm

1834mm

1890mm

Height

1706mm

1691mm

1644mm

Wheelbase

2829mm

2829mm

2873mm

When it comes to size, it matches the GLC. It is taller and as a result has a nice, tall SUV stance. It looks muscular and has a balanced demeanour. The EQB on the other hand looks very similar in profile; but from the front and the rear it does look more futuristic, thanks to the closed-off Grille and the headlamp and taillamp designs. However, as compared to the butch and muscular-looking GLB, the EQB does look a bit delicate. So which B team are you on? GLB or EQB? Do let us know in the comment section below.

On The Inside


On the inside, the GLB impresses you, and the dash design has a beautiful flow to it. It also wows you with the two big 10.25-inch screens which are high-res and loaded with information and features. The MBUX software is beautiful to use and you also get nice haptic feedback on the touchpad while operating. You can also control the screen through touch and voice commands. Then there are other elements like the turbine-shaped AC vents, which feel well-engineered. And the toggle switches for the air-con controls have a nice clicky feel to them. As compared to the GLB, in the EQB you also get ambient lighting on the dash panel above the glovebox which looks very cool. 

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Unfortunately, not everything is perfect in this cabin. Lower down on the dash and door pads you will find hard scratchy plastics, and even some of the buttons on the roof-mounted panel feel a bit cheap. In terms of features both these cars come with dual-zone climate control, powered front seats with memory, a wireless phone charger, 10-speakers unbranded sound system, a powered tailgate and a dual-pane sunroof. In terms of misses, we feel it should have come with ventilated front seats, a heads-up display and a 360-degree camera.

Seating Comfort 

The front seats on the GLB and the EQB are comfortable, as they are well-contoured and offer great lateral support. You also get an adjustable seat base to get the right amount of under-thigh support. In terms of upholstery, you get a mix of fabric and leather which feels premium. 

Unfortunately, the middle row on the GLB is not as impressive. You do get a good amount of knee room and headroom but the bench feels flat and lacks enough lateral support so you do tend to move around in them while on the move. However, the biggest shortcoming in the middle-row is the fact that it lacks that big-car feel you expect from a seven-seater, or at this price point, as the cabin feels narrow. You get this feeling in the driver's seat as well, where you get the feeling of sitting too close to the front passenger. 


Now coming to the third row. Well, Mercedes itself is honest by saying this seat is good enough only for pre-teens or your pets, and the carmaker is not lying. For people above five feet, this row feels cramped with precious little knee and foot room. You get a good amount of headroom, thanks to the high roof. The third row is not only cramped but it also means with the seats up you get next to no boot space. So it is better to just fold the seats and use the extra space. With the third row folded away, you get a boot that is as big as the GLC which is great! But Here too, I was expecting a bit more from the seven-seat SUV.

How Does It Drive?


We drove the 220d 4-Matic variant of the GLB first and it is very impressive in the way it drives. The diesel engine has a good amount of poke and the nine-speed gearbox is quick as it finds the right gear at the right time. The diesel motor too is refined and, thanks to the compact width, it feels extremely easy to drive even on narrow roads or in poor traffic conditions. GLB’s ride too is comfortable with the suspension keeping the occupants happy and comfortable, be it out on the highway, city or broken roads. 

Specifications

EQB 300 AWD

GLB 220d AWD

Displacement

2 Motors

1950cc

Power

228PS

190PS

Torque

390Nm

400Nm

Drivetrain

AWD

AWD

0-100kmph

8.0s

7.6s

What about the EQB? 


Well, on paper it has more horsepower as compared to the GLB but there are two issues. Despite being much more powerful, it is still slower to 100kmph as compared to the 220d and it also weighs almost 400 kg more! So that should mean that it will be worse to drive than the GLB right? Well, from the driver's seat it feels anything but worse. Just a tap on the throttle and in typical EV fashion the EQB takes off with zero lag, making overtaking extremely easy peasy. In fact, generally from behind the wheel, the EQB feels like the quicker car because there's no gearbox or turbo lag to deal with. It feels more potent be it driving in the city or while going up a ghat section or even while cruising out on the highway. Of course, being an EV refinement is just a level-up as compared to the GLB as the cabin feels quieter and more luxurious since there is no diesel motor rattling away under the hood. 


The most surprising bit is that despite being 400 kgs heavier than the GLB, the EQB feels almost identical going around corners which is incredible. To achieve this, Mercedes had to stiffen up the suspension, as a result at low speeds you do feel more body movement and you can also hear the suspension working a bit more. However, it is not a deal breaker, as on its own the EQB feels comfortable enough; and unless you drive these two cars back to back, it will be hard to tell the difference. The only thing to keep in mind is that the EQB will have a realistic range of around 340 kilometres and if you're okay with that then this is the version to go for.

Verdict

As luxury seven-seater SUVs, both the GLB and the EQB are impressive. They drive beautifully, are surprisingly fun from behind the wheel, have a well-appointed cabin and a long features list. What they lack, though, is that big-car feel especially at this price point, where cars like not only the GLC but also rivals like the BMW X3 and the Audi Q5 deliver. The EQB brings a unique proposition of being the only EV SUV at this price point. The fact that it drives well and has great refinement makes it a more sensible choice.

Mercedes-Benz GLB
Mercedes-Benz GLB
Rs. 63.80 Lakh
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