Compared with that test car, this prototype wears larger alloy wheels, lower-profile tyres, bigger brakes, a lower ride height, and chrome tailpipes either side of the rear diffuser.
Many have speculated the spied car is an early prototype of a high-performance Mercedes-AMG GLC63 variant, though CarAdvice understands this is not the case.
Asked directly about the German luxury car maker’s plans for the new GLC, Mercedes-AMG CEO Tobias Moers told CarAdvice at this month’s Paris motor show: “There’s no AMG”.
Pushed further on whether a GLC63 was being discussed within the company, Moers flatly replied “no”, though did not completely rule out such a vehicle for further down the track.
“Maybe we have to have a closer look. Today we don’t have a decision to do that car. If it’s successful, maybe we’ll have a look to it, but today no.”
A GLC Sport tuned by AMG would take on the diesel-powered Audi SQ5 and the BMW X4 M40i turbo petrol, the latter of which was also spied by our overseas photographers just days ago.
The successor to the left-hand-drive-only GLK, the Mercedes-Benz GLC will be available in right-hand drive and sold around the world, including Australia, where it’s expected to launch in 2015.
The mid-sized SUV is based on the same platform as the new-generation C-Class, and is likely to mirror that vehicle’s trim lines and equipment ranges, while also adding all-wheel-drive capability.
Click the Photos tab for more images of the Mercedes-Benz GLC prototype.