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2012 Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class Review

The 2012 Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class has strong acceleration, composed handling and a smooth ride, reviewers said, but it falls short of rivals with its low fuel economy and meager cargo space. 

Pros & Cons

  • Strong acceleration
  • Comfortable ride
  • Poised handling
  • Limited rear-seat legroom
  • Small cargo hold
  • Poor fuel economy




Critics' Rating: 8.4
Performance: 8.6
Interior: 8.4
Total Cost of Ownership: 8.4
Safety: 10.0
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2012 Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class Overview

The 2012 Mercedes-Benz GLK350 is powered by a V6 engine that reviewers said delivers strong acceleration off the line and at highway speeds. It comes standard with a seven-speed automatic transmission that reviewers said shifts seamlessly. The GLK-Class comes standard with rear-wheel drive and all-wheel drive is available. The EPA estimates that the base 2012 GLK-Class gets up to 16/22 mpg city/highway, which is low for the class. Test drivers reported that the 2012 GLK-Class rides comfortably over bumps and added that it feels planted when cornering, with minimal body lean.

Reviewers said the 2012 Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class' cabin is well-assembled and has first-rate materials, though some commented the dash design isn't as flashy compared with the designs in other Mercedes-Benz cabins. The GLK-Class has seating for five and comes standard with  leatherette upholstery that test drivers mentioned looks and feels very close to real leather. Reviewers reported that the front seats are comfortable, supportive and have ample headroom. Critics noted that rear-seat space is best suited to kids, as the available legroom isn't especially generous. Standard features on the 2012 GLK-Class include dual-zone automatic climate control, an auxiliary input, Bluetooth and Mercedes' COMAND infotainment system. Available features include navigation, satellite radio, a Harman Kardon surround-sound audio system, leather upholstery, heated front seats and a rearview camera. The audio and climate controls are generally easy to use, reviewers said, and some noted that the COMAND system is more straightforward than the infotainment systems in some rivals. With up to 54.7 cubic feet of cargo space, the 2012 Mercedes-Benz GLK has one of the lower cargo capacities in the class.

Other SUVs to Consider

The 2012 Volvo XC60 has excellent cargo space for the class and it gets better fuel economy than the GLK-Class. Reviewers said its rear seats are plenty spacious for adults, and it is available with integrated child booster seats in the back seats, which is a unique offering for the class.

Reviewers agreed that the 2012 BMW X3 has sporty handling and a comfortable ride over road imperfections, and they said there is plenty of legroom in the back seat. It comes standard with all-wheel drive and gets better fuel economy than the GLK350 with either of its available engines.

Compare the GLK-Class, XC60 and X3 »

Best 2012 Luxury Compact SUVs

  • #1

    2012 Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class

    $13,189 - $13,925 AVG. PAID

    You can only compare 3 cars at a time.
  • #2

    2012 Acura RDX

    $12,366 - $13,816 AVG. PAID

    You can only compare 3 cars at a time.
  • #2

    2012 BMW X3

    $11,871 - $12,749 AVG. PAID

    You can only compare 3 cars at a time.
See the full 2012 Luxury Compact SUVs rankings »

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Volvo XC60 2012 2012 Volvo XC60

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