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What I would tell others buying an ML

 
Old 06-13-2013, 10:05 PM
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What I would tell others buying an ML

This evening I met a guy picking up his brand new 2013 ML350 Bluetec while I was getting my 2012 ML350 back from service at the dealership. He asked how I like mine. As we talked, I realized how much I had to share based on my experience.

Thus this post was born. Keep in mind, this is my first Mercedes, so also written from that perspective. This community has been a great resource for me and I'm happy to give back. Your opinions may vary


Driving/Using
• Learn to use your paddle shifters. A single “click” will shift up or down to the next gear. HOLDING the left paddle for a second will drop into gear for ideal acceleration. Holding the right paddle will put back into Drive. I also like downshifting to assist breaking this 5,000-pound beast.

• Setting the tailgate max height. This feature wasn't immediately obvious to me. You can set the max height of the tailgate so it won’t scrape your garage door. As the tailgate is opening, press the red close button to stop it at the desired height. Then press and hold the close button until you hear a tone to set this as the desired open height. There’s also an MB video on this subject.

• Phone/address book sync issues. After you sync your address book on you smartphone with the vehicle’s address book, you may want to navigate to the address of one of your contacts. Too often, you get an error message regarding incomplete information. Long story short, unless the address in your phone is EXACTLY how Navtech expects it, it won’t work. I documented this issue and some solutions in a separate post.

• MB has PDF copies of user manuals. I found these handy to have on my phone (via Evernote). Here’s the link.

• Mercedes has many useful how-to videos like the one above. Here’s the link for all years/models.

Maintanence
• AdBlue. Two good things to know… 1) Your call, but you don’t have to buy AdBlue by the bottle. Some dealers have AdBlue pumps where you can fill up as much/little as you need. Prices are reasonable and you might even get a free car wash while you're there. 2) The Bluetecs only consume AdBlue when you start the engine, thus the number of “remaining starts” you’ll have before until you refill.

• Prepaid service. Again, this is my first MB. I just took my ML in for its 20k service (B) and learned that if I prepay for 2 years of service (~$775), I’m essentially getting the next service (A1) for free (saving about $500).

Accessories
• Rhino Rack makes an awesome aftermarket rack for the ML worth considering. They’re similar to Thule Aerobars, and lower profile than most. They come in a silver/brushed aluminum color and look OEM. They’re pretty quiet and have a bunch of accessories available. Specifically, this is their SportzBars (SXB) model. The silver model is SXBS and I believe they're 50" wide. See photos below.

• Phone mount. I’m a big fan of ProClip. They may phone mounts for several vehicle makes/models, including the ML. They clip on easily (no tools required). For the ML, it mounts to the right of the climate controls (see photo below)I also had my local car audio shop install a dedicated power cable so I could close the compartment with the cigarette lighter.

• All-weather mats. The MB OEM mats for the ML look great (especially the espresso brown) and fit great (post recall). In my opinion, they’re worth the extra money if you’re picky about these details.

• Remote starter. No doubt a splurge. I went with the SmartKey Starter by MidCity Engineering for a few reasons. 1) It integrates with your existing key fob and, 2) has a module that is compatible with Keyless Go. These are made specifically for Mercedes. I also recommend getting a separate remote for longer range (much longer, actually). My installer used one from Viper. All in, it was $1300. Nothin' like getting into a pre-cooled or pre-heated car!

Other
• No song info displayed from Pandora using Android. If this doesn't work on your Android phone, it’s because it doesn't support the required version of Bluetooth. (I understand, it’s not an issue for iPhones). I don’t know all the technical specifics, but there are some Android hacks to address the issue. Do a Google search for Pandora and Bluetooth AVRCP 1.3 to learn more.

What I would tell others buying an ML-proclip.jpg

What I would tell others buying an ML-rhinorack2.jpg

What I would tell others buying an ML-rhinorack.jpg
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Old 06-14-2013, 08:33 AM
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Originally Posted by Semibru View Post

• Setting the tailgate max height. This feature wasn't immediately obvious to me. You can set the max height of the tailgate so it won’t scrape your garage door. As the tailgate is opening, press the red close button to stop it at the desired height. Then press and hold the close button until you hear a tone to set this as the desired open height. There’s also an MB video on this subject.
^^Thanks for the info, I really need to read the manual again..
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Old 06-23-2013, 10:24 PM
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Thanks for sharing. I picked up my MY13 Bluetec a month or so ago and so far really like it. Needed a bigger vehicle and traded in a MY12 C350. This thing doesn't have the performance of the last one, but for a big beast can't complain. Taking it to Glacier National Park (from Arizona) this August. Been to Palm Springs a couple of times with it, so far no issues. Welcome to the MB family. This ML makes #11 for me.
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Old 06-26-2013, 03:57 PM
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I liked that the manual is installed on the car's hard drive! Makes it much easier to search for things than the book manual (which is also included).
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Old 06-27-2013, 02:38 AM
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Random comment (sorry sort of OT) -- it's inexcusable how Mercedes is holding back remote start via MBrace, when much cheaper GM cars have offered it through the same system for years. Starting your car from your phone is a luxury only until some econobox offers it. Then it becomes a liability if you don't have it.
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Old 06-30-2013, 02:34 PM
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Remote start

Remote start here in the US is becoming a standard item. Unfortunately, we don't realize that wasting fuel by empty idle of a vehicle is prohibited in quite a few countries in Europe. So now you know why MB and othe European Mfgs don't include it. If you want this on your MB, go to MidCity Engineering. Most installers take about 30 minutes to do and it works great.
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Old 07-10-2014, 08:38 AM
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Thanks for a thoughtful post and links Semibru.
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Old 07-10-2014, 10:55 PM
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Actually - using paddles - # sec hold left paddle willl calculate and take you to power gear for acceleration or deceleration at that speed - small correction - then 3 sec hoold right paddle will take you back to auto.
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