We've gotten our hands on the 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLB crossover a couple of times now, and in each instance we've found new ways to appreciate it. Not only does it offer more space than the GLA with which it shares most of its fundamentals, but it also offers more of what we expect from a Mercedes-Benz — a luxurious cabin, a comfortable ride and top-notch build quality. Riswick recently spent some time evaluating the GLB's interior, and came away quite impressed both by the practicality of its passenger cabin and the spaciousness of its cargo area.
But where does that leave enthusiasts? While we love boxy hatchbacks, bigger crossovers and SUVs tend to leave us cold, and while the base GLB is not an unattractive vehicle, its styling is fairly subdued. To throw a bone in our direction, Mercedes offers a handful of options to both dress up the GLB's interior and exterior and sharpen up its on-road behavior. The example that was delivered to me for evaluation here in the Detroit metro had just about all of these options checked.
The key visual upgrades to this particular GLB come courtesy of the AMG Line and Night packages, which were not on the GLB Riswick had out in Oregon. They are pictured back-to-back in the gallery below. The AMG Line adds the more muscular front and rear bumpers (and the integrated rear diffuser), 19" AMG wheels, and what Mercedes calls the "diamond-block" grille with hits dual (rather than quad) horizontal winglets. The Night package replaces the trim on the grille, windows and side mirrors with gloss black elements, which look particularly slick with our loaner's Mountain Grey metallic paint.
These changes may not look like much on paper, but as you can see from these photos of the two vehicles we've recently had in the Autoblog fleet, they actually make a pretty dramatic difference in the GLB's curb appeal. Our staff has mixed feelings about the five-spoke wheels that come with the AMG Line package, but all in all, the changes really make the somewhat vanilla GLB pop. The gloss black insert and wide, narrow exhaust outlets in the lower rear bumper are especially welcome.
Also included with the AMG Line package is a set of Mercedes-branded brake calipers and cross-drilled rotors on the front axle. The car also sits slightly lower with these options, which improves its corner-carving capability. Separately, our loaner was also equipped with the adaptive suspension package, which works in tandem with the GLB's built-in drive modes.
Even with these upgrades, the GLB 250 won't hold a candle to a full-blown AMG model, but they do tighten up the dynamics a little bit without a significant compromise in ride quality. If you want a stylish baby Benz that doubles as a compact family hauler, the GLB is hands-down the crossover to buy.