New Mercedes-Benz M-Class: More Dynamic, More Powerful
27th March, 2008
Mercedes-Benz has meticulously revamped the successful M-Class, which in ML 350 guise was named as Next Car's Top Drive of 2007 last New Year's Eve.
The new generation of the dynamic, stylish SUV now has even more distinctive characteristics and looks even sportier and more powerful. The front-end of this off-roader is now defined by a redesigned bumper, recontoured headlamps and a larger, even more dominant radiator grille. The rear view also sports a new-look bumper with integrated reflector strips, emphasising the vehicle's width, as well as tails lights with a smoked-glass look. Stylistic fine-tuning and new high-grade materials, which are pleasing to the eye and touch, combine with a new two-tone colour scheme to add fresh highlights to the interior, which includes a new four-spoke multifunction steering wheel.
The M-Class standard specification has also been significantly upgraded. For some overseas markets, it now includes the unique anticipatory occupant protection system PRE-SAFE® and NECK-PRO head restraints as well as an all-new, high-performance telematics system developed by Mercedes-Benz, which is much easier to use thanks to a host of new functions.
The Mercedes-Benz ML 63 AMG is also set to become even more distinctive and striking, courtesy of new front and rear aprons with a chromed underguard and a larger AMG radiator grille.
The new generation M-Class is set to hit Australian showrooms late in the third quarter of this year, with full Australian specifications to be announced closer to this time.
The Mercedes-Benz M-Class is the trendsetter among today's luxury SUVs. Its exceptional status is down to its characteristic dynamic, stylish design, a combination of compelling performance both on and off-road, the ride comfort and ease of operation of a saloon, along with value for money.
The M-Class also comes with a range of safety features that are unsurpassed in the SUV segment. Buyers have also come to appreciate these outstanding qualities. Since the second-generation M-Class was launched in April 2005, some 300,000 units have been delivered to customers around the world. As such, the state-of-the-art off-roader remains one of the most successful vehicles in this rapidly growing market segment.
Mercedes-Benz has now substantially upgraded the new-generation M-Class with fresh styling touches, even higher quality and extensively enhanced equipment and appointments. The premium SUV now looks even more powerful and sportier, making a bolder statement in terms of character and presence.
Added character and style for the exterior
The assured appearance of the M-Class is now marked by its dynamically flowing, yet at the same time crisp lines and a clear, powerful design idiom. Thanks to the new-look front-end as well as the modified rear, the new-generation M-Class looks more 'muscular' yet brings a sense of aesthetic elegance to bear – in short, it has even more style.
The front end is dominated by a new-look, robust bumper as well as headlamps with a pronounced step in the lower edge. This step continues seamlessly down and around the radiator with its distinctive contours.
The larger, lower-set radiator is another element brimming with character. Three wide, black louvres with large, rectangular air outlets and a gleaming chrome edge give structure to the radiator, making the new M-Class appear even more dominant. Fog lamps set well to the outside and a new-look simulated underguard make the off-roader appear wider and even more dynamic.
The rear bumper with integrated reflectors has also been restyled, making the M-Class appear even more poised and assured for anyone following behind.
The optional stainless steel underguard conceals the exhaust system with its twin tailpipes and also gives the car a wider stance on the road. The reversing lights also feature darkened indicator repeater lenses in a smoked-glass look. Roof rails are now also included as part of the standard-fit styling and practical features, along with the new mirrors with their larger surface designed to provide better visibility.
Interior with high-grade appointments
The interior of the new luxury off-roader has been stylishly upgraded with high-quality materials.
The door centre panel is now trimmed in ARTICO, a man-made 'leather-look' material. Two-tone leather appointments are also available as an option to give a hand-made impression. In the enhanced interior the eye is also drawn to the new, four-spoke leather multifunction steering wheel with its chrome trim, improved ease of operation and standard-fit shift paddles.
The seats have a more attractive, sportier design and can be fitted with four-way lumbar support as an option.
The new M-Class features a brand new telematics generation developed by Mercedes-Benz, offering a new dimension in user-friendliness, high performance and a host of useful new functions.
Integrated features include a hands-free system based on Bluetooth technology and an Aux-in connection for mobile audio devices such as an iPod. On request there is also a new Media Interface, which can connect an external music device with the off-roader's onboard electronics and control system, enabling music tracks to be shown in the instrument cluster and the colour display in the centre console, and conveniently accessed using the buttons on the multifunction steering wheel. At the same time, the audio device's battery is also charged.
There is a choice of three units, all of them with a colour display, a twin tuner for improved radio reception, speed-sensitive volume control, a keypad for entering telephone numbers and radio frequencies and a Bluetooth interface which enables a mobile phone to be wirelessly linked to the hands-free system.
Along with the new telematics generation, Mercedes-Benz is now offering an enhanced LINGUATRONIC voice-operated control system as an optional extra in the M-Class for the first time.
Furthrmore, the occupants are also able to enjoy a surround-sound experience of concert hall quality with the latest generation of the optional Harman Kardon® LOGIC7® sound system, which delivers exceptionally crystal-clear listening pleasure thanks to its output of 610 watts and digital signal processor (DSP).
Rear-seat passengers also have the option of a new entertainment system with two large 8-inch screens, a centrally integrated DVD player, two sets of wireless headphones for greater freedom of movement as well as two remote controls.
Unrivalled safety features as standard
The Mercedes-Benz M-Class has always set the benchmark in terms of safety in the SUV segment. For overseas markets, in future it will also come as standard with the anticipatory occupant protection system PRE-SAFE® and NECK-PRO head restraints, two features already fitted as standard equipment for Australian customers.
Fuel consumption reduced by up to 0.4 litres per 100 kilometres
The M-Class is powered by powerful yet economical V6 and V8 petrol or diesel engines, which are now even more fuel efficient.
The 4MATIC permanent all-wheel drive delivers outstanding performance both on and off-road. And the standard-fit 7G-TRONIC automatic transmission with optimised shift characteristics translates the power from the engines into refined dynamism.
Five units are available in the new-generation M-Class ranging from 140 to 285 kW.
The engineers’ meticulous attention to detail has reduced fuel consumption by up to 0.4 litres per 100 kilometres compared with the outgoing models. Moreover, the most powerful engine developing 375 kW is available in the guise of the ML 63 AMG 4MATIC.
At a glance:
Engines and transmission
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