Go Back  MBWorld.org Forums > Mercedes-Benz SUVs, Trucks, Vans, Diesels, Other > M-Class (W166)
Australia buyer need advice - paint and Airmatic >

Australia buyer need advice - paint and Airmatic

Notices
M-Class (W166) 2012, Read about the upcoming M-Class

Australia buyer need advice - paint and Airmatic

 
Old 03-10-2013, 11:36 PM
  #1  
Newbie
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 5
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Audi A4 B8 2.0TDI
Australia buyer need advice - paint and Airmatic

Hi all,

I'm from Aus purchasing a ML350. And I need some advices about the options.

Black paint: compared to non-metallic black, does metallic black make it much easier to maintain?

Airmatic package: Does this make a huge improvement on driving experience?

Thank you for your advices.
anleizhang is offline  
Old 03-11-2013, 04:36 AM
  #2  
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Australia
Posts: 56
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Audi A4
In my opinion, black is hard to maintain whether it's non-metalic or metalic.
Airmatic is good to have but my dealer also told me that there is not much difference if you are mainly driving freeway and in town.

Also how about considering ML500 as well? By the time you add metalic paint and airmatic package as options for ML350, the price should not be too different.

I initially thought about buying ML350 and had same questions as you did but ended up ordering ML63.

Anyway whether it's ML350 or ML500 I'm sure you'll enjoy your ride!

Originally Posted by anleizhang View Post
Hi all,

I'm from Aus purchasing a ML350. And I need some advices about the options.

Black paint: compared to non-metallic black, does metallic black make it much easier to maintain?

Airmatic package: Does this make a huge improvement on driving experience?

Thank you for your advices.
otagomed is offline  
Old 03-11-2013, 05:40 AM
  #3  
Newbie
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 5
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Audi A4 B8 2.0TDI
Hi, thanks for the reply.

I did consider about ml500. And in Australia, I can get it with no option just below 115k driveaway, while ml350+ convenience pack, metallic pack, and amg sport for 105k. So the price is about 10k different. The problem here is this car will become my daily drive and i drive 100kms every day, and I consider the v8 engine will be much thirsty compared to ml350bt.
anleizhang is offline  
Old 03-11-2013, 06:27 AM
  #4  
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Australia
Posts: 56
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Audi A4
Yeah... if you're going to drive 100km every day then 350BT is a way to go.
Why don't you test drive one with and without airmatic option?

Originally Posted by anleizhang View Post
Hi, thanks for the reply.

I did consider about ml500. And in Australia, I can get it with no option just below 115k driveaway, while ml350+ convenience pack, metallic pack, and amg sport for 105k. So the price is about 10k different. The problem here is this car will become my daily drive and i drive 100kms every day, and I consider the v8 engine will be much thirsty compared to ml350bt.
otagomed is offline  
Old 03-11-2013, 12:25 PM
  #5  
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: SW FL
Posts: 144
Received 3 Likes on 3 Posts
2018 GLE 43 SUV
I have a U.S. spec 2012 BT with Airmatic, Active Curve and 20-inch wheels. While I can't offer a comparison on handling, I feel the Airmatic has several advantages over the steel spring suspension.

- Changing suspension rates between "comfort" and "sport" at the push of a button.

- Capability to raise the chassis several inches for off-road traveling. And lowering an inch or so for fast highway driving.

- Automatic self-leveling front to rear and side to side. Useful when hauling heavy loads or towing.

Many past reports of poor reliability, but warranty and/or extended warranty should cover. Mine has been trouble-free, but I'm only at 10,000 miles.

If you get the "On-Off Road Package" (not sure of availability in Oz) there are additional capabilities.

Last edited by Shrdlu; 03-11-2013 at 03:10 PM.
Shrdlu is offline  
Old 03-11-2013, 01:53 PM
  #6  
MBWorld Fanatic!
 
YYZ-E55's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Toronto
Posts: 2,034
Likes: 0
Received 10 Likes on 9 Posts
MY17 E43 Matte Selenite/Macchiato Beige, MY16 GLE350d Tenorite/Crystal Grey, MY17 B250
The suspension is a matter of preference and whether or not you tow. The AIRMATIC is quite harsh and does not absorb imperfections as well as the steel suspension, but the self-leveling is great if you plan to tow.

040 black will show every swirl mark and imperfection. 197 will hide the swirls quite well. If you're a detailing fanatic, there's nothing better than a clean car in 040. Otherwise, 197 is worth the metallic paint charge.
YYZ-E55 is offline  
Old 03-11-2013, 02:07 PM
  #7  
MBWorld Fanatic!
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 4,933
Likes: 0
Received 573 Likes on 447 Posts
A gaggle of MB's
You some things to consider from US - here, Airmatic has been been a bit troublesome in earlier generation driving on/past warranty. Quite a costly for non-warranty repair, with airmatic strut failures that seem to occur at 70K-80K miles.

Interesting comment regarding "swirl" - quite common here in US to treat the new generation Mercedes clearcoats a bit different - and going "machine buff free".

Process starts with applying a wipe-on/cure/wipe-off new gen paint sealant (such as Einszett GlanzWax blue top available in AU) and then spray nano-wax wipe-on-cure-wipe-off to add depth and luster about 30 days after applying sealant.

Our ML550, your ML500... yes, zoom,zoom - however at highway speed very good fuel economy for a V8 - added blessing of the twin turbo
fabbrisd1 is offline  
Old 03-11-2013, 03:19 PM
  #8  
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 94
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
S550, SRX, ML550
Originally Posted by YYZ-E55 View Post
The suspension is a matter of preference and whether or not you tow. The AIRMATIC is quite harsh and does not absorb imperfections as well as the steel suspension, but the self-leveling is great if you plan to tow.
I'm also on the side of regular/steel suspension - when I test drove some 350's (with and then without airmatic), I found that I personally preferred the feel of regular suspension over airmatic. To me the "comfort" setting was just too squishy, and the "sport" setting just too hard.

I really liked the airmatic on my S-Class simply because it made the road feel like molten chocolate. But also quite boring to drive.

If I lived in California with stop/start traffic then I probably would have looked at getting airmatic, distronic and other drivers aids that makes that type of traffic more bearable. Luckily though I live far away from those traffic nightmares!
Thimee is offline  
Old 03-11-2013, 11:33 PM
  #9  
Newbie
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 5
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Audi A4 B8 2.0TDI
Thanks Otagomed, Yes I think I will stick with ML350 BT. Thanks for the advice though. I would quite lean towards ML500 if I would not need to drive that much.

Originally Posted by otagomed View Post
Yeah... if you're going to drive 100km every day then 350BT is a way to go.
Why don't you test drive one with and without airmatic option?
anleizhang is offline  
Old 03-11-2013, 11:40 PM
  #10  
Newbie
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 5
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Audi A4 B8 2.0TDI
Hi Shrdlu,
Thanks for the advice. The reason I wanted the airmatic is I still want to ultimate the handling even I notice this is just a SUV . This will be my first Mercedes, so so many confusion around when comes upto options.

Could you please comment on the active curve? does this only help cornering? And how good is it? In Australia, this option alone is around 4.5K dollars. which is not cheap...

Originally Posted by Shrdlu View Post
I have a U.S. spec 2012 BT with Airmatic, Active Curve and 20-inch wheels. While I can't offer a comparison on handling, I feel the Airmatic has several advantages over the steel spring suspension.

- Changing suspension rates between "comfort" and "sport" at the push of a button.

- Capability to raise the chassis several inches for off-road traveling. And lowering an inch or so for fast highway driving.

- Automatic self-leveling front to rear and side to side. Useful when hauling heavy loads or towing.

Many past reports of poor reliability, but warranty and/or extended warranty should cover. Mine has been trouble-free, but I'm only at 10,000 miles.

If you get the "On-Off Road Package" (not sure of availability in Oz) there are additional capabilities.
anleizhang is offline  
Old 03-12-2013, 10:43 AM
  #11  
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: SW FL
Posts: 144
Received 3 Likes on 3 Posts
2018 GLE 43 SUV
I can't comment myself on the Active Curve, since I drove heavy duty pickup trucks for 10 years before the ML and BMWs and Porsches before that.

But here is what Car and Driver, a U.S. enthusiast magazine, wrote about Active Curve in 2011, reviewing the 2012 MLs:

" . . . On road, we drove a gas-powered ML350 with the Dynamic Handling package. That $5150 option includes the Active Curve System (ACS), which decouples the anti-roll bars both off-road and during straight-ahead freeway slogs. We never felt it coupling or decoupling. We never felt it doing much of anything, to tell the truth, although body motions were satisfactorily controlled in the hills. But body motions were also satisfactorily controlled in a non-ACS ML we sampled, and that one didn’t max out at a cosmically startling $73,055. As the ML negotiates turns, you can still feel huge lateral load transfers, and the seats’ weak bolsters further suggest that this SUV might possess grand ambitions, but handling is not among them . . ."

Full at

http://www.caranddriver.com/reviews/...bluetec-review

I got the package primarily for the Airmatic because of its self-leveling feature, as I tow a trailer from time to time. Don't want a drooping rear-end, y'know.

Also, I find the "sport" Airmatic setting much softer than my daughter's BMW X5 with its run-flat tires. On well-paved roads, I drive in the sport setting exclusively.

Last edited by Shrdlu; 03-13-2013 at 09:44 PM.
Shrdlu is offline  
Old 03-12-2013, 11:12 AM
  #12  
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 113
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
ML350
and here is what evo said (albeit on the ML63 which comes with active roll bars standard):

"The active roll bars can be felt working under cornering loads, with the towering car resisting roll even under extreme provocation. Given that the ML weighs 175kg more than a Cayenne Turbo itís a deeply impressive system. "

so, I guess motoring journos don't always speak with one voice!
jellies is offline  
Old 03-12-2013, 12:13 PM
  #13  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Hong Kong
Posts: 337
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
2013 G63, 2015 S500, 2016 C63 coupe
always had airmatic problems on our benzs..I choose springs for my wife's ML350
BlackSL is offline  
Old 03-13-2013, 08:16 PM
  #14  
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Adelaide, Australia
Posts: 70
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
2016 C205 C200 Coupe, 2016 Range Rover Sport, 2012 ML350BT AMG Sport (Sold)
Originally Posted by anleizhang View Post
Hi all,

I'm from Aus purchasing a ML350. And I need some advices about the options.

Black paint: compared to non-metallic black, does metallic black make it much easier to maintain?

Airmatic package: Does this make a huge improvement on driving experience?

Thank you for your advices.
I have a similar Australian spec to what you are looking for, ML350BT, AMG Sport Pack, Convenience Pack, HK Sound in Iridium Silver with Black Leather and Anthracite Poplar trim.

I have had metallic black cars a few times and as we all know they look fantastic when they are clean and waxed, otherwise they show every bit of dirt and dust. I really enjoy the clean look of the MB silver and it suits the car perfectly. It always looks crisp and shiny even when dirty. Saw a black one in the showroom and nearly got seduced again, but glad i went with the silver choice.

With regards to the Airmatic, I have driven both suspension options and much prefer the Airmatic. It all depends how you drive and what the vehicle is to be used for. I do mostly around town driving where the comfort setting is suited to the easy driving environment, but I like having the option of the sport setting. I have taken the car on a long trip to Melbourne and back along the Great Ocean Road and it behaved perfectly. Comfortable ride on the freeway sections when the car lowers down at speed, and then great driving on the twisty sections in Sport mode.

I went for a trip down the Fleurieu Peninsula last weekend and had the car in Sport mode most of the time along the fast sweeping country sections. It was comfortable, handled great for the size of car, but you still felt as though it could be pushed quite hard when needed. Its no sports car of course but it still gives you a good feel. I havent got the active curve but ive heard mixed views on its necessity. Again it depends on your driving style.

The other issue with the Airmatic is it helps off road when you can raise the car another 60mm or so for ground clearance. Also IMO, the AMG Sport pack, which includes Airmatic looks better than the standard version.

By the way $105K for your spec is a very good price.
DrFox1969 is offline  
Old 03-13-2013, 11:43 PM
  #15  
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 20
Likes: 0
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
2013 ML550 US spec
I recommend airmatic. I have a US ML550 with the on-off road package which includes sort of an advanced airmatic system (couple extra height settings). I like the fact I can adjust the ride height which is especially handy in the snow...and lowers in dry conditions which makes the car look sportier. I like the ability to adjust the ride from comfort to sport...although I find the sport a bit too stiff and truck-like, comes in handy if you drive the car hard as you mentioned above. There is also the "cool factor"...neat to be able to adjust the car...plus it tends to make noise adjusting after you shut it off. I gotta tell you, there is no comparison between the V6 non-turbo ML350, and the biturbo V8 ML550. The ML350 (at altitude) is lathargic, while the ML550 is fast and powerful. I have been getting 20 miles/gallon...not spectacular mileage, but decent.
Leetom is offline  
Old 03-14-2013, 04:18 AM
  #16  
Super Member
 
iankayem's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Australia
Posts: 624
Likes: 0
Received 2 Likes on 2 Posts
X350d GLE500e 2017, ML350 BlueTec 2012(sold), A200 2013, ML350CDI 2009(sold), Aston Martin DB7 2003
If you drive 100km a day, you will need to wash that black car daily, regardless whether it is metallic or not. I have Palladium Silver which is good, but not as good as Iridium silver for hiding the dirt. White may be better still, but is it a bit boring?

Airmatic in "Auto" setting is smooth on the road around town and the freeways. It is part of the Sports pack due to the 21" wheels. Its still good to have on the 20". We do not have 19" wheels available which work fine with steel springs.

Turn it to "Sport" and it transforms the beast for those winding Tasmanian roads, Alpine roads, and as already said the Great Ocean road.

And who NEEDS the ML500 with the torque of the ML350BT.
iankayem is offline  
Old 03-15-2013, 01:21 AM
  #17  
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Brazil
Posts: 72
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
2013 C63
Another vote for Iridium Silver, shows the lines just perfect, easy to mantain and ages well, a true MB classic.
I had the Airmatic on my wifes 12' ML350 and hated it, I dont know why but it bounced on every road bump, even in sport mode.
I just took delivery of a 13' ML350 with the regular steel suspension and it feels better, a much more controlable ride IMO.
BTW the AMG exterior Package looks fantastic on my new ride!!

Last edited by galion; 03-15-2013 at 01:25 AM.
galion is offline  
Old 03-15-2013, 09:22 AM
  #18  
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: SW FL
Posts: 144
Received 3 Likes on 3 Posts
2018 GLE 43 SUV
Now that we have our Australia buyer thoroughly confused . . .

I also recommend Iridium Silver, which not only hides dirt but also reflects heat. I have grey MB Tex in my Iridium 2012 BT (actually two-tone with a charcoal dash) which doesn't absorb and re-radiate the heat like all-black does. A great combination for Southwest Florida.

Last edited by Shrdlu; 03-15-2013 at 08:58 PM.
Shrdlu is offline  
Old 03-18-2013, 12:37 AM
  #19  
Newbie
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 5
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Audi A4 B8 2.0TDI
Hi Folks, Thanks for all the suggestions. Its been really helpful to my decision making.

Finally, I finished my build order over the weekend and now can't wait for its arrive although was told the waiting period was about 4 months.

I still went for metallic black.. I know I will be taken away 1 hour for my every weekend for endless cleaning... but just cant resist...Other than that. I just had convenience pack + double sunroof.

I didnt get Airmatic as I dont have anything to tow either go offroad at all.

Thanks again for all your sharing, I hope my babe can arrive earlier

Ps: is there any way to track the production status like BMW do?
anleizhang is offline  
 

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:
You have already rated this thread Rating: Thread Rating: 0 votes,  average.

Quick Reply: Australia buyer need advice - paint and Airmatic


Contact Us - About Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

© 2019 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.
 
  • Ask a Question
    Get answers from community experts
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: