Last post on Aug 14, 2013 at 8:07 PM
You are in the Mercedes Benz M-Class
What is this discussion about?
Mercedes-Benz M-Class, Mercedes-Benz ML55 AMG, SUV
#6868 of 8199 new ML350 for my wife
Mar 07, 2003 (9:11 pm)
My wife is looking at a new ML350 when her Lexus 300 comes off lease later this year.
Will there be any significant changes between 2003 and 2004 versions of the car?
I have heard about reliability problems with the M-class in the past. Has reliability improved? The 3.5 liter engine seems better suited to pull this large vehicle. My wife likes the comfortable leather seats. Are they supportive for long car trips? Our Lexus RX 300 has been great but we want to try something new this time around and the safety features of the ML 350 seem unmatched. Also we get flooding here in South Florida and the 20 inch fording depth sounds like a useful feature.
She likes the Silver and Desert Silver (gold) colors of the car but she also likes the Java leather - is it possible to get these color combinations? Does the beige leather hold up well or would she be better with Ash (gray) or Charcoal (black) leather? We have a baby on the way so we want to have something that won't get too dirty.
We will be going to a Volvo XC 90 event in two weeks. They said that they will have ML350's and X5's to drive in addition to the XC 90's. Sounds like a good chance to test drive without having to deal with a salesman. We test drove the T5 XC 90 but were unimpressed with the engine. The T6 costs as much as the Mercedes and the BMW but doesn't seem as luxurious.
Thanks for any help you can provide!
Mar 07, 2003 (11:08 pm)
They're planning on a new SUV in 2005, so I doubt they'll do anything significant in 2004.
Reliability has improved, but if your "300" is a RX300, it won't match that. MB still has a much higher percentage of electrical glitches. The data shows it improving from "awful" to "below average".
I certainly wouldn't pay much attention to "fording depth" in my decision - at the depths where the ML might be slightly better than another SUV, you're putting yourself at huge risk.
Personally, if I was buying a new mid-size SUV right now, I'd get either the Honda Pilot or Toyota Highlander, but the ML is still a very nice SUV.
Mar 08, 2003 (4:27 pm)
Anyone have experienc with this program? Good or bad?
#6871 of 8199 New ML350 for wife...
Mar 08, 2003 (7:25 pm)
I bought a ML350 in December (replacing my tried and true '89 Toy SR5 V6 ExtraCab PU) and since have piled up 5000+ miles. I took it cross country (from Denver to SW Ohio and back) and drove it nearly every day 100 miles round trip to a client's site in Cincinnati. Did I mention I got to experience everything from rain to near blizzard conditions on this trip? The truck was very sure footed - even with the standard tires. My brother-in-law got his Jeep GC stuck in the snow at the end of his driveway - I had no trouble at all.
However (you knew that was coming didn't you??) at 1600 miles the check engine light popped on. Called MB they said not to worry - so I didn't. Got home and had it serviced and it turns out a wire had broken in a harness to a fuel sensor. they ordered a new harness and everything seems fine now. The dealer was very good about getting me in and out and I got a loaner car for each trip (once to find out the trouble - the other to install the harness).
In addition, I mentioned when I dropped it off the first time that I thought the tranny was shifting a little erratically and they said they dropped the pan and cleaned out clogged screens with "flashing" material in them. While it seems to be much happier now, I wonder just what "flashing" material is...
All in all, still a thumbs up from my point a view - especially now that I know the truck can handle pretty much anything nature can throw at it. Oh, it is available in Desert Silver / Java. That's what I have - I like it and I have 2 children - just put a light blanket on the seat and seatback and you should be able to prevent most disasters : )
#6872 of 8199 Wife's car . . .
Mar 09, 2003 (2:44 pm)
Now that there are so many crossovers with most admitting the actual "utility" of a SUV is less important, I think MB's ML is more a husband's car; you'd probably prefer it to Hondas, MDXs, RXs and XCs. And, if your wife likes it too, sounds like a match made in heaven. The form-fitted canvas rear seat cover is a good option if you're worried about kids and leather.
#6873 of 8199 leasing help...
Mar 13, 2003 (12:40 pm)
I am in the market to possibly lease an M-class. It is between the Lexus RX300 and the M-class.
I am quoted $1005.00 out of pocket and $499 a month for the lexus. Can MB come under this or will it be more. I understand the M-class has more room but we do not need it. I just like the looks of the M-class a little more.
Can any one help?
#6874 of 8199 Leasing Prices
Mar 13, 2003 (3:13 pm)
There are so many variables in leasing that it virtually impossible to know if your deal can be matched or not. Price-wise, a ML350 runs a little more than the RX, comparably equipped, but I've heard that MB sales are way down, particularly of the C-class coupes and MLs. If there was time to go in and drive a hard bargain, now would be it. OTOH, if you're looking at an RX300, then you're looking at an obsolete model, so it should be heavily discounted also.
I'd do your homework and get all the invoice prices off this site including any dealer incentives. Then go in and offer something near invoice and if they bite, then see what residual and lease factors they'll allow and what the payment might be. You really want to avoid going in and saying "can you do $x/month?" Salesman lick their chops when they get a customer that says this, because they can manipulate the deal by extending terms and adding capital charges to get any payment amount you want.
And shopping for the lowest payment will sometimes unduly favor cars with an an artificially high residual - that's fine if you're sure you're going to turn the car in at the end of the lease, but if you shop for a lower upfront price and lower residual, you'll have better options to buy the car at the end of the lease.
All these things are the reasons I don't lease - too much power in the hands of the dealer. If you buy the car, you have only a single number to negotiate and you can directly compare deals. Unless leases are subsidized, you'll typically get a lower total cost of ownership with buying.
#6875 of 8199 Starmark? by sjmurray2
Mar 14, 2003 (6:58 pm)
You picked the wrong day to bring up this question.
$900 to replace the radio because Starmark doesn't consider the radio 'necessary'.
It seems the Starmark warranty is crafted to cover things that last on Mercedes, rather than protect you on parts that are not reliable.
The Starmark inspection also means little. When I got my Starmark'd car, the wipers didn't work right, the sensor for the oil level was broken and the dealer blew the repair and then the dealer repaired a number of other items they evidently didn't notice on their first inspection.
The radio really kills me though. This is the 3rd radio in a 2000 ML320 with 58,000 miles. The SA says he'll ask MB if they'll 'help' with the cost.
The ML is great to drive but it is the shop every six months for something. The power windows in the ML will break, its a given. When I complained my driver window switch broke, the SA told me "that's nothing, usually more than one break at a time". Nice consolation.
To EDXIAN, I would recommend against buying a 1999. Supposedly the 2000 is better but I am seriously thinking of dumping this to avoid future big dollar repairs, so I would avoid a 1999.
My brother-in-law had a 1999 ML for about 2 years before trading it in on a BMW X5 which he loves. Now I understand why.
Consumer Reports just rated MB as the second worst quality car (above Cadillac) and specifically mentioned the M class and C class as the reasons why.
The dealer gave me a C240 sedan as a loaner today which I loved (most of the their loaners are Altimas but I always get a Benz because the first month I owned the car they had it as much as I did) but MB quality scares me so much I'll get a 3 Series if I want a car like.
If MB spent as much on quality control as they do on advertising, it would be a worthwhile automobile.
#6876 of 8199 ML320 height pitch noise
Mar 20, 2003 (10:08 am)
I own a 1998 ML320, this is a piece junk, only this junk don't go in to the water. since the day one this SUV give me nothing but trouble. now when I start the car in the cold days, it give me a height pitch noise it last 2-3 min. I tried turn off the fan, it still there, it is not from the engine, I can't hear from outside, is anyone else have this problem? please help...