What's with the Volkswagen Tiguan pulling the same trailer?
We had a bit of a drought in Mercedes-Benz GLB-Class spy shots towards the end of summer, but now it seems engineers and test drivers are exercising the boxy new SUV in spades. Not only did the keen eye of walkoARTvideos on YouTube catch a fleet of GLBs testing on the street, the prototypes are also seen pulling trailers. We’ve seen this in the past from other automakers; in some cases the trailers were actually packed with batteries and used as range-extenders for electric-vehicle testing.
We don’t think that’s the case here, as there aren’t any signs of additional cables or plugs to connect with the vehicle. As far as we can tell, these trailers are ballast for exercising the SUV’s towing capabilities, or simply extra weight to place additional stress on the GLB’s mechanical bits. Judging by the way the vehicles are squatting at the rear, we’d say there’s quite a bit of weight on those trailers. What’s also interesting here is the Volkswagen Tiguan spotted with the group pulling an identical trailer. Could Mercedes-Benz be benchmarking the SUV for the GLB-Class?
Outside the fleet, videographers also caught a single GLB testing on the road and were treated to a very close, extended look. The camo wrap is still quite heavy, but it appears most – if not all – of the chunky faux body panels are now removed. We get a very good look at the SUV’s profile, revealing a boxy shape far removed from the rounded GLA-Class on which it’s based.
We haven’t heard anything new on tech or powertrain options. Current thinking is that the GLB will be well-equipped inside with the company’s MBUX infotainment system in full force. Power should come from a range of four-cylinder turbocharged engines offering as much as 221 bhp, with diesel engine options a near certainty for European customers.
It’s possible the new GLB-Class could get a reveal this year for the Los Angeles Auto Show, but it’s looking more and more like that will happen next year with sales beginning by the end of 2019.