Mercedes-Benz has announced that two new models will join its popular M class of SUV vehicles. Mercedes-Benz confirmed the M-Class will be joined by the entry level V6 diesel ML 280 CDI and the range topping ML 63 AMG in October (06). The M-Class is leading the Australian luxury SUV segment, with year-to-date sales of 1,324 units.
ML 280 CDI – new entry level model consuming just 9.4 L/100 km
ML 63 AMG – the world’s most powerful naturally aspirated eight cylinder engine in regular production
The ML 280 CDI, with a recommended retail price of $77,900, serves up 140 kW of power and a peak torque of 440 Nm. This diesel model burns just 9.4 litres of fuel per 100km (combined city and highway), making the M-Class one of the most economical off-roaders in its class.
“The introduction of the ML 280 CDI and the ML 63 AMG will only add to the appeal of the M-Class, which has proven to be very popular with customers wanting a luxury SUV. The ML 280 CDI, priced from $77,900, is a fantastic value for money proposition for customers who may not have previously been able to consider purchasing an M-Class,” said Horst von Sanden, managing director of Mercedes Car Group in Australia
Although Mercedes has a reputation for sticking an AMG badge to any type of car it sells, it seems like the M class might infact be one of the better AMG cars. With a recommended retail price of $159,900, the ML 63 AMG is a new development by Mercedes-AMG. The AMG 6.3-litre V8-engine generates an output of 375 kW at 6800 rpm and a maximum torque of 630 Newton metres at 5200 rpm; this makes the new AMG powerpack the world’s most powerful naturally aspirated eight-cylinder engine in regular production. I wonder how many AMG owners will actually ever take the car off road?
To coincide with the introduction of these two new models, Mercedes has changed the offerings of the M-Class range to provide simplification in the options available for customers. Given that over 70 per cent of customers order either an ML 320 CDI or ML 350 with the Luxury package, Mercedes has decided to offer this as a standard feature on both models (which can be deleted if required). Features of the standard package include a choice of burr walnut interior wood trim or anthracite poplar wood trim, chrome package, compass, front seats with full electric adjustment, full leather upholstery, extended interior lighting package and storage compartment in center console. The recommended retail pricing has been amended to reflect the standard inclusion of the luxury package. The Luxury models of the ML 350 starts from $87,900 and ML 320 CDI starts from $90,900.
Two additional optionally available packages have also been added. The COMAND package, which consists of COMAND APS, reversing camera and digital/analogue TV tuner is available for $8,500 (valued individually at $11,450) for the ML 280 CDI, ML 350 and ML 320 CDI. This package is available for $2,900 for the ML 500 (COMAND APS standard on ML 500).
The Comfort package is also a new offering for customers purchasing a ML 280 CDI, ML 350 or a ML 320 CDI. Priced at $4,000 (valued individually at $5,390), this package consists of automatically dimming interior and driver’s side exterior mirror, electrically folding exterior mirrors, glass electric sunroof with lifter and a luggage retaining net.
Additional features now optionally available for the M-Class are:
DISTRONIC; luxury front seats;
LINGUATRONIC TV tuner digital/analogue rear entertainment system
heated seats for the second row
19-inch AMG light alloy wheels with a 5 spoke design
19-inch light alloy wheels with a five spoke design.