Mercedes-Benz Announces New Naming Strategy
There’s been a lot of talk about Mercedes’ plans to introduce a new naming scheme for its models, especially across its SUV lineup, which will no longer include the GL, ML and GLK monikers. We already knew the Germans are planning to rename its crossovers based on the car platform they’re built on, but Stuttgart has finally come out with the full details surrounding its new strategy.
The new system aims to simplify model names for customers and establish a connection between vehicles based on the underpinnings they share. The majority of the lineup will continue to use the names we’re already familiar with, and the changes will be centered around the brand’s five core models: A, B, C, E and S. The G-Wagon, GLA crossover, CLS, CLA and the SL continue to be sold under the same moniker, while the rest of the range receives new badges.
Click past the jump to read more about Mercedes-Benz’s new nomenclature.
Specifically, all SUV and crossover models, except the G-Class model, will have "GL" as the first two letters in their name. Mercedes explains "G" denoted the car’s lineage, while "L" is a letter that "appears time and time again over the history" of the company. A third letter is added to each model’s name, which indicates its connection with the core model series. The GL becomes the GLS, the ML is renamed GLE, while the current GLK is set to change its name to GLC. In short, the GLS is the S-Class of the crossover lineup, while the GLC hints there’s a C-Class platform underneath. Additionally, the X6 competitor known as the MLC until today will be dubbed GLE Coupe.
Moving over to cars, Mercedes is changing only one name. The compact roadster known as the SLK since its inception in 1996 becomes the SLC. The larger SL roadster gets to keep its denomination.
The company’s nomenclature for drive systems gets a few updates as well. While cars running on compressed natural gas, diesel and hybrid drivetrains continue to feature "c", "d", and "h" letters, respectively, in their names, the all-electric and fuel cell vehicles switch to "e" and "f". For example, the all-electric B-Class Electric Drive becomes the B250e, while the B-Class Fuel Cell receives a B200f badge. All-wheel-drive models continue with 4MATIC monikers attached to their names.
Why it matters
Unlike Cadillac, which is looking to build a brand-new image, Mercedes is out to simplify model names across the entire lineup. Granted, the new nomenclature strategy does just that by gathering all Mercedes-Benz nameplates around the core models. Once the upcoming GLB joins ranks, customers will find it very easy to identify a crossover/SUV according to the platform underpinning the company’s cars. It doesn’t get simpler than this.