The wraps are finally off Mercedes' new challenger in the popular midsize premium SUV market, and this time it'll be coming to the UK in late 2015.

The Mercedes GLC replaces the outgoing GLK, which never made it to our shores due to issues with right-hand drive conversion. The car uses a new modular platform and is expected to be priced from around £30,000.

Based on the current C-Class compact executive saloon and borrowing the same Mercedes trademark front-end, the GLC ditches the old non-UK car's boxy profile for a softer, curvier appearance. It sits lower to the ground than some SUVs, and that's likely to aid on-road handling, but still offers the raised driving position required of vehicles in this class.

Mercedes GLC spy shots - rear 2


The Mercedes GLC is aimed squarely at the latest crop of premium rivals, such as the Audi Q5, BMW X3 and new Land Rover Discovery Sport. The firm's new modular platform, which underpins the C-Class and will soon be used in a variety of other models, means the front driveshaft can be relocated to allow space for right-hand drive.

We've seen a glimpse of the GLC's interior before and it was again reflective of the C-Class, with glossy materials, a free-flowing centre console and a tablet-style infotainment screen. A longer wheelbase than before should offer greater passenger accomodation, although it's unlikely seven seats will be available like in the Discovery Sport.

Mercedes GLC interior
The GLC will receive the same powertrains as the C-Class, meaning a range of turbo petrol and 2.1-litre diesel engines in varying power outputs. There's no doubt a 'GLC350' plug-in hybrid unit will also be available, and even a hot AMG-Sport variant using the turbocharged petrol V6 from the C450.