Go anywhere in style. That pretty much sums up luxury SUVs, and the 2013 Mercedes-Benz M-Class is a fine example of this concept. With the addition of a new off-road option that adds serious terrain-taming equipment, "anywhere" just got bigger.
The 2013 Mercedes-Benz M-Class is a five-passenger midsize luxury SUV the ML350 is equipped with standard 19-inch wheels, a sunroof, a power liftgate, foglamps, dual-zone automatic climate control, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, eight-way power/heated front seats, reclining rear seats, premium vinyl upholstery, the COMAND electronics interface, Mercedes' mbrace2 telematics system, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity and an eight-speaker sound system with HD radio, a CD player and USB/auxiliary jacks. The ML350 comes with a 3.5-liter V6 that produces 302 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque. A seven-speed automatic transmission sends power to the rear wheels, with 4Matic all-wheel drive available as an option. In Edmunds performance testing, an ML350 4Matic went from zero to 60 mph in 6.8 seconds, which is average for its class. EPA-estimated fuel economy is 18 mpg city/23 mpg highway and 20 mpg combined for both rear- and all-wheel-drive models.
Standard safety features for all 2013 Mercedes-Benz M-Class models include antilock brakes, traction and stability control, hill-start assist and hill-descent control, active front head restraints, the mbrace2 telematics system (smartphone integration and Web-based apps that include remote controls, driver monitoring and emergency services), a collision warning system, PreSafe (it anticipates an imminent crash and automatically takes measures to better secure occupants), front and rear side airbags, side curtain airbags and a driver knee airbag. In Edmunds brake testing, an ML350 4Matic came to a stop from 60 mph in 114 feet, which is outstanding for such a heavy vehicle with all-season tires.
The 2013 Mercedes-Benz M-Class features an upscale cabin and seating for five. The more rounded dash design reminds us more of the distantly related Jeep Grand Cherokee in its appearance than its squared-off Mercedes siblings, but that's more of an aesthetic critique. The COMAND interface works well and allows the driver to easily select the car's more complicated infotainment options without making simpler commands too difficult.
Passenger room is impressive, as the M-Class offers more rear legroom than most of its competitors. There's no third row offered, though. With the rear seats in place, there is a total of 36 cubic feet of luggage space. When the seats are folded flat, this expands to 71 cubes -- an average figure for this class of vehicle.
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Exterior: The exterior of this unit is in excellent shape with no major flaws.
Interior: The interior is in excellent condition.
Mechanical: This vehicle is "Insight Certified" with no known mechanical defects after completing a 144 point mechanical inspection with required maintenance performed.
Tires: The tires are in excellent health with plenty of tread life remaining.