The Mercedes GLC facelift has been spotted testing before it hits showrooms in around 12 months’ time. Many of the changes should mirror those introduced to the recently updated C-Class, so expect improved interior tech and, for the first time in the UK, a plug-in hybrid version.

The light disguise of this test mule shows that styling upgrades are subtle. There’s a revised design for the front grille, the headlights feature new lighting graphics, and the bumpers will receive minor tweaks.

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Inside, the changes focus on an updated infotainment system. Our spy pictures show a larger 10.25-inch screen placed on top of the dash, and the old car’s click wheel, located on the centre console, has been ditched for an A-Class-inspired touchpad. Expect more touch controls on the steering wheel, and the option of a 12.3-inch digital instrument panel in place of traditional analogue dials.

The revised GLC should get a refreshed range of engines, using at least some of the powerplants from the C-Class. The most significant could well be a plug-in hybrid, which will be available for the first time in right-hand drive. It’s likely to be badged GLC 350 e, and should mix an electric motor with petrol power – although Mercedes could choose to also offer the new diesel-electric PHEV that’s being introduced in the revised C-Class.

Whatever the fuel type, the hybrid GLC will lose some of its boot capacity; expect the regular car’s 550-litre loadbay to take a 40-litre hit to make room for batteries beneath the floor.

Traditional petrol and diesel GLC variants will continue, sharing the many of the same 2.0-litre units recently introduced to the C-Class.

What do you make of the Mercedes GLC spy shots? Let us know in the comments section below…

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