[UPDATE, September 9] Images of the Euro-spec 2020 Mercedes GLC 300e have been added. The compact plug-in hybrid crossover is shown alongside the new GLE 350de diesel-electric hybrid for the European market.

While we’re waiting for Mercedes to unveil the Vision EQ S concept at the Frankfurt Motor Show, the three-pointed star is presenting another premiere it will have at IAA this week. Refreshed for the 2020 model year, the GLC 350e gets the mid-cycle facelift introduced for the regular versions of the premium crossover back in March at the Geneva Motor Show.

The cosmetic tweaks might not tempt you into buying one, but the changes are actually skin deep considering the 2020 GLC 350e 4Matic EQ Power has a revised powertrain. Its four-cylinder 2.0-liter gasoline engine works together with an electric motor to develop a combined output of 315 horsepower and a peak torque of 516 pound-feet (700 Newton-meters). Compared to the outgoing 2019MY, the hp stays the same, but torque sees a significant increase of 103 lb-ft (140 Nm) thanks to the company’s third-gen PHEV technology.

Gallery: 2020 Mercedes GLC 300e

Not only that, but Mercedes has ditched the seven-speed automatic transmission in favor a nine speed 'box. The electric motor has been specifically revised to work with the 9G-TRONIC transmission and the PHEV setup now offers “considerable increases in power and torque density.” There’s now a torque convertor with integrated lockup clutch acting as a starting device, while an extra clutch developed for electric driving has been installed between the internal combustion engine and the electric motor.

It gets better as the new on-board charger increases the charging capacity from 3.6 kW to 7.4 kW. Speaking of the battery, Mercedes says the electrified GLC can cover anywhere between 46 to 49 kilometers (28.5 to 30.4 miles) without sipping any fuel as per NEDC. In the more realistic WLTP, range drops to 39 - 43 km (24.2 – 26.7 miles), with the EPA rating for the U.S. model to be determined. The previous version did up to 14.5 km (9 miles) on electric juice, according to EPA.

Rather than carrying over the 8.7-kWh battery pack, Mercedes has swapped it out for a bigger 13.5-kWh pack. Charging it at 1.2 kW will take nearly eight hours to go from 10% to 100%, while at 3.8 kW the time necessary to get from 10% to 80% will be of a little over two hours.

As far as performance is concerned, the electrified crossover will do 0 to 60 mph (96 kph) in an estimated 5.6 seconds, thus making it 0.6s quicker than its predecessor. Top speed has not been announced, but the old one did 130 mph (209 kph) with the ICE running and an electronically capped 84 mph (135 kph) in electric mode.

Following its Frankfurt debut in the coming days, the 2020 Mercedes GLC 350e 4Matic EQ Power will go on sale in the United States in the first half of next year. Pricing has not been disclosed, but the outgoing model retails for $50,650 MSRP excluding the $995 destination & delivery charge.

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