Continuing the most rapid product offensive in the company’s history, a total of 15 all-new, new-generation or facelifted Mercedes products will emerge before the end of 2021. They will range from commercial vehicles and new SUVs to electric models and a flagship hybrid-powered hypercar.
Ultimately, the biggest news coming in 2019 will be the unveiling of a brand new member of the brand’s SUV family. Likely to be badged GLB, it’ll be revealed in the summer and will add a new dose of practicality at the smallest end of the company’s SUV line-up, as a more spacious alternative to the GLA.
Spy shots show that the final version of the car originally touted as a ‘baby G-Wagen’ may be a bit more contemporary in design. There’s no hiding the GLB’s traditional SUV two-box shape, but it probably won’t wear any of the G-Wagen’s nostalgic styling touches. Instead, the marque’s latest SUV design language, as used on the new GLE, will be repackaged into a small and boxy shape.
We anticipate the GLB will play a role similar to the B-Class, itself a more practical and spacious alternative to the A-Class hatchback, and will be a genuine rival for the BMW X1. It could prove to be an incredibly important car for Mercedes, given that the X1 is comfortably BMW’s best-selling SUV. Our exclusive images preview the look of the new model.
The GLB will use the MFA2 platform that underpins the latest A-Class hatchback, and as such, will be finished inside with a similar cabin and dashboard layout, focused around Mercedes’ new MBUX infotainment interface. It will be offered with the same selection of petrol and diesel engines as the A-Class, too, and an AMG-engineered GLB 35 with around 300bhp on tap is also in the pipeline. After making its debut in the summer, the newcomer will go on sale in the UK towards the end of 2019 and be priced from around £28,000.
Smaller cars will make up an increasing amount of the brand’s business in the years ahead, and the first new Mercedes we’ll get to see will land neatly in the wake of the new A-Class.
Even though the brand now offers its Volkswagen Golf-rivalling A-Class in a saloon body style, Mercedes still sees a market for the swoopier CLA. A new, second-generation version of the compact four-door coupe is coming, and very soon. Spied for the first time at the beginning of 2018, it will be revealed right at the beginning of this year at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
The coupe will differentiate itself from the A-Class Saloon not only with its more rakish, miniature CLS design, but also by offering more legroom. Being at the smaller end of the Mercedes line-up, its interior will be heavily inspired by the A-Class.
Importantly, though, it allows Mercedes to attach an estate to the A-Class range. The CLA Shooting Brake will enter its second generation, too, and will make its debut not long after the regular four-door coupe, possibly arriving at the Geneva Motor Show in March.
It will be one of three new cars the firm is considering for Geneva, because a facelifted GLC and GLC Coupe could also star on the Mercedes stand in Switzerland. Spied testing earlier this year, the updated version of the BMW X3 rival will not receive a huge visual rethink, but will usher in plug-in hybrid tech for the SUV.
An interior overhaul also means a new infotainment system featuring a 10.25-inch central display, alongside the option of a fully-digital and customisable instrument panel.
The updated GLCs kick off a period that will be dominated by new SUVs. Following their reveals at Geneva, Mercedes will waste little time getting another new off-roader out in public. A debut of the third-generation GLS is being lined up for the spring, possibly at April’s New York Motor Show.
The heavyweight seven-seater will go on sale in the summer, and only a few months after the market launch of the new BMW X7 – its chief rival. We expect the design to follow the new rules established by the GLE, but be adapted for the GLS’s more imposing figure. It’ll gain the latest semi-autonomous driving tech featured on the S-Class, and stick with six and eight-cylinder powertrains.
In the AMG version, the 5.5-litre engine will be ditched in favour of the 4.0-litre twin-turbo. A plug-in hybrid using the powertrain from the S 560 e limo could appear as well.
The platform on which the next GLS is being developed will also underpin a new ultra-luxurious SUV for the Maybach brand. At this year’s Beijing Motor Show, the firm signalled its intentions to do so with the Mercedes-Maybach Ultimate Luxury concept.
The final model will be a conventional, large SUV in shape, rather than the limo on stilts design seen at Beijing. It could be revealed towards the end of 2019, with November’s LA event or the Guangzhou show in China in December as potential stages.
One more new Mercedes SUV is due in 2019: the new GLE will gain a GLE Coupe sibling, to provide competition for a new BMW X6 that’s also coming next year. The Mercedes is likely to arrive in the autumn.
Moving into the next decade, the focus will shift away from SUVs, but not before the next-generation GLA is revealed. Again, it’ll be a jacked-up variant of the A-Class, riding taller and with a only a few minor design differences between it and its conventional hatchback counterpart. The interior will be lifted wholesale from the A-Class, as will the engine line-up, but with more 4MATIC all-wheel-drive options offered.
Following the onslaught of new SUVs we’ll see in the next 12 months, 2020 looks set to be much more varied. A new S-Class is due, and Mercedes will also introduce a second all-electric model to its EQ sub-brand in the form of the EQA, a small, all-electric hatch set to take the premium fight to the Volkswagen I.D.
The Formula One-engined, 986bhp AMG ONE hypercar will hit the road for the first time, too, while 2021 should see the introduction of an all-new C-Class, which was spied recently for the very first time.
What’s in the pipeline and when it will arrive
New Mercedes CLA
Second-generation CLA lands as rakish alternative to A-Class saloon.
Mercedes V-Class facelift
Popular minivan is due a slight design refresh and upgraded technology.
New Mercedes CLA Shooting Brake
Swoopy new CLA estate will be brand’s most practical small car on sale.
Mercedes GLC facelift
Audi Q5 rival to be revised inside and out; gets plug-in hybrid tech as well.
Mercedes GLC Coupe facelift
Coupe-bodied mid-size SUV to arrive alongside refreshed regular version of GLC.
New Mercedes GLS
Largest model in SUV range could appear on stage at April’s New York show.
All-new Mercedes GLB SUV
Brand new member of the family will take the fight to BMW X1 and Audi Q3.
New Mercedes GLE Coupe
Mercedes is set to continue matching BMW coupe-SUVs; Mk3 X6 rival is coming.
Mercedes E-Class facelift
Big-selling exec saloon to get tech and styling updates towards end of the year.
All-new Mercedes-Maybach SUV
Maybach brand to move beyond limousines with this Rolls-Royce Cullinan rival.
New Mercedes GLA
GLA will continue as rugged, raised alternative to A-Class, despite arrival of GLB.
All-new Mercedes-AMG ONE
Formula One-engined hybrid hypercar will lock horns with McLaren Senna.
New Mercedes S-Class
Flagship limo will be reinvented in 2020, with coupe and cabriolet set to follow later.
All-new Mercedes EQA
Compact EV to lead onslaught of EQ-branded electric vehicles from 2021.
New Mercedes C-Class
BMW 3 Series and Audi A4 fighter to enter its fifth generation early next decade.
Which new Mercedes are you looking forwad to seeing? Let us know in the comments section below…