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2013 ML350 or 550?

 
Old 08-13-2012, 03:26 PM
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2011 ML350
2013 ML350 or 550?

I currently own a 2011 ML350; my lease is up in March so I'm looking at getting a 2013. I test drove one and I love the satin ash wood -- does anyone know if you get the wood steering wheel, does that also come in satin ash?

I'm also torn between the ML350 and the ML550. I'd love to have a V8. But the V6 I drove is peppy (34 more hp than my current ML), $10,000 cheaper than the V8, and 2-3 mpg better, plus it will cost less to insure. If you have the 350, do you feel it's strong enough? If you have the 550, what's your experience with it?

Thanks.
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Old 08-13-2012, 05:38 PM
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the wood steering wheel will match whatever choice of interior wood you have in the rest of the car.

I ordered the satin ash wood trim also for my vehicle and was going to get the matching wood steering wheel until I saw it in person. IMO, the satin wood steering wheel didn't look right, so you might want to see it in person first.
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Old 08-13-2012, 05:58 PM
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2013 ML550: Paladium Silver, Brown Satin Ash
Originally Posted by schroedinger View Post
I currently own a 2011 ML350; my lease is up in March so I'm looking at getting a 2013. I test drove one and I love the satin ash wood -- does anyone know if you get the wood steering wheel, does that also come in satin ash?

I'm also torn between the ML350 and the ML550. I'd love to have a V8. But the V6 I drove is peppy (34 more hp than my current ML), $10,000 cheaper than the V8, and 2-3 mpg better, plus it will cost less to insure. If you have the 350, do you feel it's strong enough? If you have the 550, what's your experience with it?

Thanks.
I can confirm also that the wood wheel does come in Satin Ash, although it's more smoothed and polished, i.e., doesn't appear open pore. I actually which the trim was finished in the same way.

But I would actually suggest avoiding the wood wheel entirely. The hardness and coolness makes it uncomfortable to the hand and diminishes the grip. So, it's all for looks. Better off spending the money on another option, like the multi-contour seats.

As for 350 vs 550, I started of wanting the 350 for the reasons you mentioned. But once I drove both in comparison, I was sold on the 550 despite the drawbacks you mention.

For me, the ML is all about safety, and I feel the 550 is more solid of a ride and the extra performance will make sure the ML will not let me down in a pinch.
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Old 08-15-2012, 12:05 AM
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2013 ML550
I'm looking into getting the new 2013 ML as well. I test drove the 350 (2013) first and thought it was much better ride than my current ride (2007 4runner) of course. I was curious about the 550 and took it for a test drive (2012) as well. Well, I'm set on getting the 550 now because the extra HP was so much fun.

The guy at the dealership told me that 2013 550 won't come out until November, but I'm hearing about it already out on this forum??
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Old 08-15-2012, 01:00 PM
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2013 ML550; 2018 C43 AMG; 2016 Porsche GT4
I test drove a 2012 ML350 and felt the engine was a bit taxed. My research revealed the approx $7K upcharge (if memory serves) for the ML550 would likely result in the vehicle retaining the vast majority of the $7K through the next many years. In other words, yes, it's $7K more out of your pocket today, but 5 years from now, you will get most if not all of that $7K back in resale value over and above a comparably equipped ML350. I drive about 8k miles a year so frankly the loss of 2-3 mpg isn't a big annual $$ factor. So I ordered a 2013 ML550 without even test driving the V8. I received it a couple of weeks ago and I LOVE it. Why? Power. Compare the V6 to V8 torque ratings. Big diff. Many believe MB is understating the HP level of the 550 in the ML. Trust me, there's a big difference in acceleration capabilities, **IF** that's an important attribute to you. And it's easy to turn (tune) the wick up on a twin turbo system if that desire comes your way down the road. Friends of mine in the auto business estimate there's 1 ML550 for every 9 ML350 sold, so when it comes time to sell the ML550, the demand is there. Just my .02
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Old 08-15-2012, 03:34 PM
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All good points above. I feel like my 550 is a little more prestigious than a 350 but really its all about the power for me. There isn't a single day I don't enjoy mashing the go pedal a little.

My baby is at the dealership today getting a tiny rock mark on the wheel fixed and they just called me to find out if I mind them taking off the other three wheels to clean the brake dust off the INSIDE of the wheels so they all look the same (clean as new). NO CHARGE!!!

How is that for service??
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Old 08-15-2012, 03:52 PM
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2013 ML550: Paladium Silver, Brown Satin Ash
Originally Posted by LoneStarFlyer View Post
...... So I ordered a 2013 ML550 without even test driving the V8. I received it a couple of weeks ago and I LOVE it. ....
If you have a 2013 ML550 already, it didn't come with Multi-contour seats, correct?

This is apparently what has delayed my order for an MY13 ML550 to no sooner than an end of September build...but likely now November, since there is reportedly no ML550s to be built in October.

Would be interested in seeing your whole configuration, if you could post it. Thanks!
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Old 08-15-2012, 04:19 PM
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2013 ML550; 2018 C43 AMG; 2016 Porsche GT4
Originally Posted by gplank View Post
If you have a 2013 ML550 already, it didn't come with Multi-contour seats, correct?

This is apparently what has delayed my order for an MY13 ML550 to no sooner than an end of September build...but likely now November, since there is reportedly no ML550s to be built in October.

Would be interested in seeing your whole configuration, if you could post it. Thanks!
You are correct, it does not have the MC seats. I find the stock seats pretty comfortable, and while I did consider the MC seats, I finally passed. Time will tell.....

Options:
- wood/leather steering wheel
- HK sound
- Multi color ambient lighting
- Keyless GO
- PO1 package
- Lighting Package
- Steel Grey with special order grey/black leather interior (black headliner)
- Pre-wiring kit

FYI, that last option was necessary in MY2012 to obtain front passenger seat lumbar/memory. For MY2013, there's now a stand alone option for the lumbar/memory. I picked up on the change too late in the ordering game, so I now have a worthless wiring kit for the back seat and no lumbar or memory for the front passenger seat. That won't bug me, but it will bug my wife when she's along for the ride. I ordered the car in mid-April and took delivery on July 25th.
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Old 08-15-2012, 05:40 PM
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2013 ML550: Paladium Silver, Brown Satin Ash
Originally Posted by LoneStarFlyer View Post
You are correct, it does not have the MC seats. I find the stock seats pretty comfortable, and while I did consider the MC seats, I finally passed. Time will tell.....

Options:
- wood/leather steering wheel
- HK sound
- Multi color ambient lighting
- Keyless GO
- PO1 package
- Lighting Package
- Steel Grey with special order grey/black leather interior (black headliner)
- Pre-wiring kit

FYI, that last option was necessary in MY2012 to obtain front passenger seat lumbar/memory. For MY2013, there's now a stand alone option for the lumbar/memory. I picked up on the change too late in the ordering game, so I now have a worthless wiring kit for the back seat and no lumbar or memory for the front passenger seat. That won't bug me, but it will bug my wife when she's along for the ride. I ordered the car in mid-April and took delivery on July 25th.
Wow, you must have received one of the first 2013s off the line. I think the grey/black is the best looking interior for the standard leather option. However, I'm going with the designo, which has no grey/black option, and all therefore black for durability. The porcelain is beautiful, but I know I'll stain it, and I also like darker cabin for privacy sake.

Sorry to hear about that seat memory/pre-wiring mix up. It might help to know that the per-wiring will likely help with the resale value of the car, so you probably will get that cost back eventually. The pre-wiring can also be used for the iPad holder, to bring power to it.
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Old 08-22-2012, 10:43 PM
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2013 ML550
http://reviews.cnet.com/suv/2012-mer...-35248854.html

hmmm.. This test drive review actually suggest people to consider the BlueTec version if you're looking into the 550. I've only test drove the 350 and 550, so I can't comment. Any comments from people who test drove the 350, 550 and BlueTec?
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Old 08-23-2012, 07:36 AM
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Originally Posted by GTscrub View Post
http://reviews.cnet.com/suv/2012-mer...-35248854.html

hmmm.. This test drive review actually suggest people to consider the BlueTec version if you're looking into the 550. I've only test drove the 350 and 550, so I can't comment. Any comments from people who test drove the 350, 550 and BlueTec?
That recommendation was directed at people who are concerned about fuel economy. Hey if you want really great mileage just buy a TDi Jetta and be done with it. If your fuel bill is something you really think about you shouldn't be buying an expensive Mercedes. My annual gas bill costs me less than 1% of my income, I wonder what the average is?
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Old 08-23-2012, 10:41 AM
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2013 ML550
Originally Posted by 2012MLBlue View Post
That recommendation was directed at people who are concerned about fuel economy. Hey if you want really great mileage just buy a TDi Jetta and be done with it. If your fuel bill is something you really think about you shouldn't be buying an expensive Mercedes. My annual gas bill costs me less than 1% of my income, I wonder what the average is?
He did make that comparison about MPG between the two earlier, but at the end of the article he stated that he didn't feel a big difference in performance. I'm thinking he must be crazy or he didn't push the gas down far enough in the 550. However, I never drove the BlueTec so I can't comment. Here is what he wrote at the very end:

"Actually, the model that probably competes the best with the ML550 is its diesel-powered sibling, the ML350 Bluetec. For a starting price that's about $7,000 less than the gasoline-powered model, you get more torque and better fuel economy. Sure, there's a slight drop in horsepower, but even I was unable to feel a difference in performance between the two models. Besides, if you were really after the best driving performance from a big SUV, you'd be looking at the 518-horsepower ML63 AMG and its competitors. (You'd also be a bit daft, but that's just my opinion.) So, just save the money and get the diesel."
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Old 08-23-2012, 10:54 AM
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Having owned both the 2012 ML350BlueTEC (for a month before trading up to the 550) and owning a 2008 ML320CDi diesel for four years prior, I think I can confidently say there is NO comparison in performance between the BlueTEC and the 550. Yes the diesel has great torque and I love the fact it can cruise a hilly road without gear hunting plus its amazing for towing but the 550 is FAR quicker and FAR more exciting to drive.

Again, loved the diesel and really only upgraded due to my hesitating when cold issue. If that had never occurred I would be happy BlueTEC driver today.
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Old 08-23-2012, 01:21 PM
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imo nothing beats a v8 ! Unless you want fuel economy lol... The ml 350 is really sweet but when i drove it, it felt slow compared to v8 cars. Bottom line is if you want real noise and performance get the v8. It will be easy to gain even more hp and make it sound insane. But again the ml350 is so comfy and doesn't drink much!
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Old 08-23-2012, 05:19 PM
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2013 ML550; 2018 C43 AMG; 2016 Porsche GT4
According to MB's 2013 Brochure for the M Class:

ML350: 0-60 in 7.5 seconds
ML550: 0-60 in 5.3 seconds
ML Diesel: 0-60 "as quickly as the ML350"

'Nuff said.
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Old 08-23-2012, 10:10 PM
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2013 ML550
Originally Posted by LoneStarFlyer View Post
According to MB's 2013 Brochure for the M Class:

ML350: 0-60 in 7.5 seconds
ML550: 0-60 in 5.3 seconds
ML Diesel: 0-60 "as quickly as the ML350"

'Nuff said.
That's a good point. I don't know what that CNET reviewer was smoking. However, I will need to test drive the BlueTec for myself before I go order the 550.
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Old 08-24-2012, 08:24 AM
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2012 ML350 Blue Tec,2014 SLK 250
I've had the Blu-Tec for a couple of months now. It has enough torque for me. I am sure the V8 feels faster at getting to speed but then again, it should IMHO.
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Old 08-24-2012, 02:57 PM
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Go diesel....you won't regret it.
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Old 08-24-2012, 03:01 PM
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Originally Posted by 2012MLBlue View Post
Again, loved the diesel and really only upgraded due to my hesitating when cold issue.
You kept a car for a *month* and traded it because of a very minor flaw (at worst) which disappeared completely within a minute???? Yikes,I wish I had *your* kind of $$$!
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Old 08-24-2012, 03:27 PM
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Originally Posted by listerone View Post
You kept a car for a *month* and traded it because of a very minor flaw (at worst) which disappeared completely within a minute???? Yikes,I wish I had *your* kind of $$$!
Well I do own a pretty successful business and I do make lots of money but even if I didn't I sure as hell wouldn't have put up with what was NOT "a very minor flaw". I am amazed that a single person on this planet would buy a new Mercedes Benz, the epitome of quality and luxury, and put up with an engine that hesitates and accelerates very roughly ever damn day when it's cold.

After several very heated conversations with my dealership, hearing from their Master Mechanic that it was a known problem for months and yet they were still delivering these BlueTecs with said known fault, calling the GM of the dealership, they finally took back my BlueTec and got me into a new 550 with no penalty other than the cost increase for the more expensive model.

I cannot in good faith reccommend the BlueTec model to anyone who asks.
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Old 08-24-2012, 04:32 PM
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Originally Posted by 2012MLBlue View Post
Well I do own a pretty successful business and I do make lots of money but even if I didn't I sure as hell wouldn't have put up with what was NOT "a very minor flaw". I am amazed that a single person on this planet would buy a new Mercedes Benz, the epitome of quality and luxury, and put up with an engine that hesitates and accelerates very roughly ever damn day when it's cold.

After several very heated conversations with my dealership, hearing from their Master Mechanic that it was a known problem for months and yet they were still delivering these BlueTecs with said known fault, calling the GM of the dealership, they finally took back my BlueTec and got me into a new 550 with no penalty other than the cost increase for the more expensive model.

I cannot in good faith reccommend the BlueTec model to anyone who asks.
At the beginning, after just doing my research on the ML I was pretty much set on diesel. The day I went to the dealership, they only had the 350 and 550 on hand. After test driving both, I liked the performance ride on the 550. I've been torn between the diesel and 550 ever since. But after that statement, the 550 looks like its gonna win.

2012MLblue, now I'm torn about which color to get.
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Old 08-29-2012, 06:16 PM
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Originally Posted by 2012MLBlue View Post
That recommendation was directed at people who are concerned about fuel economy. Hey if you want really great mileage just buy a TDi Jetta and be done with it. If your fuel bill is something you really think about you shouldn't be buying an expensive Mercedes. My annual gas bill costs me less than 1% of my income, I wonder what the average is?
Agreed. If fuel cost is your primary concern, then the ML may not be a prudent purchase. But some want the safety of this truck and still get decent mileage. Some care about it for environmental reasons, some for political, some for conversation and other want to minimize the number of irritating trips to the gas station.

I care about all of the above but I also love cars and acceleration and braking and styling. I do my part in other ways that satisfies me and you only live once so 550 it is.
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Old 08-29-2012, 07:56 PM
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'13 ML550, '08 ML320cdi (retired) & '99 ML320 (retired)
Not much price difference

When I started looking to replace my '08 CDI, I was looking at another diesel. But after reading this thread, I decided to take a look at the 550. Bottom line, after adding all the little extras like 20" wheels, stitched dash, running boards, and a few distinctive body parts (all included on the 550 for only $750), I figured the difference in cost was closer to $2000 than $6000.
I ended up ordering a Cinnabar with black leather with a November delivery date. I do wish I could have driven one of the new models before I ordered, but you can't have everything.
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Old 08-29-2012, 09:14 PM
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Originally Posted by LoneStarFlyer View Post
I test drove a 2012 ML350 and felt the engine was a bit taxed. My research revealed the approx $7K upcharge (if memory serves) for the ML550 would likely result in the vehicle retaining the vast majority of the $7K through the next many years. In other words, yes, it's $7K more out of your pocket today, but 5 years from now, you will get most if not all of that $7K back in resale value over and above a comparably equipped ML350.
The resale on V8s is far worse than comparable V6s. For reference, the published MBF residual values on V8s are typically at least 3% lower than the V6s over a 36mo term.

Realistically, you'll be lucky to recover half of the cost delta between the V6 and the V8. Not saying that doesn't make the V8 worthwhile - your "research" may have convinced your wife but sadly it won't work when you go to sell!

Enjoy the bi-turbo!
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