Eagle-eyed reader Benjamin Coetzee recently cellphone-snapped a duo of disguised Mercedes-Benz GLK SUVs testing in Windhoek, Namibia.
The SUV will appear in concept form at the Detroit Motor Show early next year and should compete against the BMW X3, Land Rover Freelander, Volkswagen Tiguan and the upcoming Audi Q5.
Based on the existing C-Class estate platform (the new wagon will be launched in South Africa early in 2008), the GLK is basically a more compact version of the GL. The baby SUV will feature several design cues already seen on the big seven-seater, too.
The SUV will be available 4Matic all-wheel drive and a range of four and six cylinder petrol and turbodiesel engines coupled to Mercedes-Benz's 7G-Tronic transmission.
The car will likely feature a modified suspension for greater axle articulation, but don't expect Airmatic air suspension. A mass of safety systems, including Brake Assist Plus and Distronic adaptive cruise control, should also be available.
And while the GLK will likely be biased for on-road use, hill descent control and a sump guard will be of some use when venturing off-road.
Keeping with Mercedes-Benz tradition, an AMG version is also said to be in the works, packing a version of the company's 6.3-litre V8.