Mercedes GLC F-CELL arrives with 272-mile range

Hydrogen-fuelled Mercedes GLC F-CELL is set to reach dealerships in 2018, although it won't be coming to the UK

Mercedes has revealed the GLC F-CELL, a hydrogen fuel-cell version of its BMW X3 and Audi Q5 rival that’s already confirmed for production, at the 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show.

The new electric SUV has a pair of 4.4kg hydrogen tanks below the floor, each encased in carbon fibre and running at a pressure of 700 bar. Refuelling takes roughly the same as a conventionally fuelled vehicle - about three minutes - and when full, the GLC F-CELL has range of up to 437km, depending on which mode the vehicle is using. 

All the latest from the 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show

The rated output of the car’s fuel cell is 147kW, with 350Nm of torque available. That’s enough to take the GLC to an electronically limited top speed of 160km/h. 

As well as using hydrogen fuel, the GLC F-CELL can be charged from a wall socket. This replenishes lithium-ion batteries which can then assist the overall system or run the car in pure-electric mode for short distances (around 49km).

The latest F-CELL can run in four modes. Hybrid allows the car to draw energy from both the fuel cell and the lithium-ion battery, while F-CELL maintains the battery charge by using only the fuel cell. BATTERY forces the GLC to run using power from just the lithium-ion cells, while CHARGE goes further than F-CELL by actively charging the battery as the car is driving along. 

The GLC F-CELL gets a few subtle styling modifications to separate it from regular GLCs, with different alloy wheels and blue detailing along the sills and the rear bumper. There are a few compromises on space because of the size of the fuel tanks; the boot is smaller than usual and the rear seat sits slightly higher than normal, reducing the amount of headroom.

Mercedes says that the production version of the car will get rear air suspension as standard. The concept’s fully digital instrument panel and widescreen COMAND infotainment system are also likely to be carried over.

The new car isn’t the first fuel-cell Mercedes, but it demonstrates how the German manufacturer is making gains in the technology. The overall powertrain has around 40 per cent more output than the previous offering, the B-Class F-CELL - but there’s around 90 per cent less platinum involved in the system’s construction, helping to drive down its cost.

Mercedes hasn’t issued even a rough on-sale date yet for the GLC F-CELL, although it’s likely to reach dealerships some time in 2018. They won’t be in the UK, though; Merc’s British arm has no plans to sell the car here.

What do you think of the Mercedes GLC F-CELL? Would you consider a hydrogen-fuelled car? Let us know below...

Recommended

New 2022 Mercedes GLC to rival Audi Q5 and BMW X3 with sleek new look
Mercedes GLC

New 2022 Mercedes GLC to rival Audi Q5 and BMW X3 with sleek new look

The next-generation Mercedes GLC SUV will get S-Class tech and our exclusive images preview how it could look when it arrives in mid-2022
14 Aug 2020
Mercedes GLC review
Mercedes GLC - front
Mercedes GLC

Mercedes GLC review

The mid-sized Mercedes GLC offers comfort and decent running costs in the competitive premium SUV sector
6 Jul 2020
Prices for new Mercedes GLC 300 e
Mercedes GLC 300 e - front static
Mercedes GLC

Prices for new Mercedes GLC 300 e

The new Mercedes GLC 300 e has an electric range of 29 miles and will start from £49,687, with deliveries starting in the summer
29 Jan 2020
BMW X3 vs Mercedes GLC
BMW X3

BMW X3 vs Mercedes GLC

The revised Mercedes GLC is drawn against the class-leading BMW X3 in this premium SUV battle
7 Dec 2019

Most Popular

New 2021 BMW M3 launched with huge grille and 503bhp
BMW 3 Series M3 Coupe

New 2021 BMW M3 launched with huge grille and 503bhp

The new sixth-generation BMW M3 Competition saloon gets a 503bhp straight-six engine and four-wheel-drive
22 Sep 2020
New 2020 Volkswagen ID.4 electric SUV revealed with up to 323 miles of range
Volkswagen ID.4

New 2020 Volkswagen ID.4 electric SUV revealed with up to 323 miles of range

The new Tiguan-sized Volkswagen ID.4 electric SUV becomes VW’s second ID. model, rivalling the Tesla Model Y
23 Sep 2020
New Range Rover Velar PHEV launched with 33-mile electric range
Land Rover Range Rover Velar

New Range Rover Velar PHEV launched with 33-mile electric range

Land Rover has given the Range Rover Velar an update, with a new plug-in hybrid powertrain and an improved infotainment system
23 Sep 2020