ML420 cdi – Questions ..

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by paul320, Jan 5, 2009.

  1. paul320

    paul320 New Member

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    Should I buy one?

    I’ve had a couple of E320 cdi Estates over the last 5 years and now fancy a change.

    My current is a 2006 LHD E320 Cdi Sport, which I am being offered good money for. I think because the Euro has strengthened so far against the pound its makes it a good bet to export back to mainland Europe.

    I’m wondering whether to buy another E320, 58 plates seem to be available for around 30k with plenty of toys or whether to go for something different.

    I could really do with a vehicle that’s bigger inside than the E Class estate – we find with two teenagers and an infant in a booster seat the EClass is too tight in the back.

    The ML 420 cdi looks appealing and they seem to be available for around the 30 k mark.

    Can anyone tell me what they are like to live with? Good or bad points etc.
    What’s the realistic fuel consumption in real world driving?
    What options are a must have?
    Is the Sport a better driving experience to the SE model?

    I did look at an ML320 as they were doing some good finance deals on a new one but I found them a bit too sluggish compared to my E320.

    Any advice greatly received!

    Thanks

    Paul
     
  2. A210AMG

    A210AMG MB Club Veteran

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    Hello

    Is the ML actually any wider than the E class for the teenagers and booster seat?

    Also I think you will miss the MPG you have from the E class.


    Funny enough my dads had his E320cdi Estate since new in 2003 and did look at changing a year ago, tried allsorts but nothing he liked as much as the E class.

    We are off to the Geneva show soon and the new E class should be there, think he has his eyes on that now.

    Most people say the SE rides better in the ML but for me looks would mean the Sport :)
     
  3. BTB 500

    BTB 500 MB Club Veteran

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    I would check the dimensions carefully ... IIRC the ML isn't actually much bigger inside.

    Fuel consumption will be worse ... heavier vehicle with more frontal area (drag).

    But if you like the ML and fancy a change then go for it!
     
  4. harpalb

    harpalb New Member

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    Hmmmm, not qualified to compare the E to the ML as not had an E class but...

    The best point is the engine and its sheer torque, if used for towing or heavy load lifting then this is your car, over the 320 the car brings a smile to my face everytime. If you like the idea of beating a few hot hatches then this is your car. Gearbox is good, build quality is good but not excellent, and I love the car to bits. Then again its my second car and not my daily commute.

    Bad points are its not as well built compared to the Touaregs and RRs I've driven. Seems poor for the price, but second hand are a bargain.

    Options that I like personally are Bluetooth prep and running boards.
    MPG in town driving with a bit of a burst 17mpg
    regular driving 21mpg
    motorway trips 80+ and with passengers gives me 28mpg
    motorway trips at 70 with careful driving has given me 32mpg with the best ever 35mpg.....

    If you're not going to use the power or dont mind not hearing the V8 purr then saving yourself a bit of money filling up may be the best thing, but then again a second hand 420 has done a fair bit of depreciating already!!
    My 2p....
     
  5. timskemp

    timskemp Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    no

    If you want more rear space then go for an S class, or get yourself something with three rows like an R class or a GL. Personally I don't see any advantage for on-road use to owning an ML over an E - and IIRC the load bay is shorter in the ML and width not much different, yet the refinement is worse, running costs will be higher and resale value is going plummet if UK government has its way.

    Long wheelbase R or S would be my choice (though the R shares the MLs AWD and hugeness). ML makes a little sense if you're into caravans or horses.
     
  6. JasM

    JasM Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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  7. Mactech

    Mactech Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I went from a V6 diesel E class estate to a ML320 Sport six months ago.
    My wife and I both like being able to see over the hedgerows!
    Can't say I have noticed any real space difference inside, and the same plastic boot liner bin fits in the rear of both cars for the dogs. But the ML is actually slightly shorter than the E estate, but wider and much taller.
    The engine is not quite so well isolated as in the E, but at cruising at speed is much the same.
    Overall fuel consuption is about 5mpg less than the E from a worst of 28 to a best of 40.
    The 420 engine adds weight to the car but brings with it masses of torque.
    I miss some small touches from the E such as the brake hold facility and the interior ambient lighting, but my wife hasn't noticed!
    What I do like is the car's ability to distance you (and it is quite literal) from the road. Road trips can become akin to being on a big cruise ship.
    I think all 420's get Airmatic suspension, and that is a bigger difference on the ML than any other in the Merc range.
    Just my 2p's worth....;)
     
  8. peterg1965

    peterg1965 Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    The GL is huge and will give you the addition of the extra row of seats. The third row seats are also adult sized and I can fit a wheelchair behind them when they are up. I have driven the GL420 as well and that is an fantastic engine with plenty of torque. I would say with the second hand bargains around there is little difference between GL320 and 420s.
     
  9. A210AMG

    A210AMG MB Club Veteran

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    I do love the GL, Makes mine look small when I park next to one at the dealers.... there coming down to 30K also :) but then the new shape ML's are around 18K... lot of car for the money.

    If I have the seven seats in use there is only a small amount of boot. Saying that although my dads e-class estate is a tiny bit longer in the boot it has little height.

    We can fit out pram upright leaving loads of boot space yet in my dads the pram goes flat and in the way if putting other stuff in.

    Also getting a little one in and out of the ML is much easier than in dads E-class estate. Inside with the baby seat I think mine is a tad bigger (wider) and the foot well is flat.


    For me and our needs I would go for a GL320Cdi being sensible (the GL420 would be lovely).

    For now though I love my ML being sat high up , it eats the miles (done 850miles in one day in ours and get out fine), feels very safe, tows our van with ease. I've had 3m coving in in and all manor of wood / doors etc.
     
  10. OP
    OP
    paul320

    paul320 New Member

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    Useful info - cheers. Quite a noticeable difference between this and my current E. I came up from Bordeaux to Manchester on Saturday and keeping to speed limits was giving me 37mpg fully laden. Looks like overall the 420 is about 7 mpg worse than my E320cdi. But hey ... the price of fuel has come down ....
     
  11. OP
    OP
    paul320

    paul320 New Member

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    Wow - thanks all for your input.

    I take the point about the GL but I think one would be too big for my wife to be comfortable with. The ML is slightly shorter, a tad fatter but taller than our E and she is OK with that.

    We only have one car in the household as we live close to a mainline rail station we find that we don't really need two cars any more, so I have to get one car that does everything.

    I'll go and blag a test drive in a 420 and see how it goes.

    Thanks

    Paul
     
  12. Spartacus

    Spartacus New Member

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    Paul,

    I have just been through the same dilema so will add my 2p.

    I wanted to change the trusty 5 yr old ML270 to something newer and after scouring the blurb and the internet decided I wanted an ML420 SE. ( could not live with an ML Sport that had a £50k price mark and having 'Articio man made leather', the kids would destroy it ) SE has real leather as standard ( Nappa on mine ) and wood trim, that was the crucial difference for me.

    Sport's are more available so finding my 1 yr old SE was hard escpecially as I also wanted minimum spec of sunroof, rear airbags, Harmon upgrade. £30k was my budget as well and I found one with 20k miles that had cost the owner £66k 18 months ago. It has every single option including off road package, adaptive lights, keyless go.

    I have had my ML420 for about 3 months now and the difference between the old ML and this new ML is night and day. So much more refined and sharper to drive. No more crashing over potholes and wallowing around corners. The power is addictive as well, I read that the in gear accelaration is quicker than the ML63AMG. The air suspension is standard on the 420 and does to make a huge difference. On the Comfort setting the car wafts and wallows soaking up everything, on the Sport setting the gearbox and the accelerator become more responsive and the supension becomes very hard, lowering the car above 70mph. Most of the time I leave it to sort itself out with the default setting.

    Just had to renew the road tax at £400 and just filled up for 94p per litre. I see 22mpg around town and 35mpg on a run, very similar to the ML270 so no change in running costs.

    The 320's are everywhere especially in Sport guise, very pleased I went for the 420 as I would have always wondered what it would have been like.

    I like the discrete 'iron fist in a velvet glove' style. Very happy.
     
  13. Bobby Dazzler

    Bobby Dazzler MB Club Veteran

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    Have a go before dismissing it. Mrs D drives an ML, and we were invited to have a go in a GL at MIRA. We had the GL420 and Mrs D loved it, not too big at all all. She even waded through a really tight trench in it, no problem.

    We're going for a look-see at a GL420 sometime this week when we get half a chance.
     
  14. raymont

    raymont Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I’ve had a GL 420 for about a year now and have done about 15k trouble free miles.

    I get about 20 mpg doing short local runs, often from a cold start. If I drive at around 70 on the motorway it’ll return about 27mpg. On a long fast run (not in this country) cruising around 100mph I’ll average about 24mpg.

    Car is a remarkable cruiser, very quiet and comfortable. Effortless performance. Seven real seats, the back two fold away / deploy by pushing a button. Not that much boot space with all seven in use, but pretty big with the two rears folded. More agile, considering what it is, than you might expect, esp with the suspension set to sport. I drove a 320 and a 420 before buying, and there really is, in my opinion, no comparison. Not only is the 420 much quicker it is so much smoother and quieter.

    Huge list of standard kit, would be worth comparing with a ML. Suspect would need to add lots of extras to get to the same spec. If you go for a GL make sure you get one which has Xenons fitted, they’re an extra ( except on the 500) and really worth having.

    Yes it’s big, but it’s quite easy even in urban situations as the width is easy to judge, no protruding bulges. Finding a parking space can take a little longer than with a mini. Only extra mine doesn’t have which I’m considering retrofitting, is a reversing camera. The height of the car can make it difficult to tell if something low is behind you.
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2009
  15. BTB 500

    BTB 500 MB Club Veteran

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    Bulky vehicles show a much sharper drop in MPG with speed due to the aerodynamic drag (which doesn't go up in a linear way).

    I have a Vito with the 3.0 V6 CDI. With the cruise control set to 75 mph I get 30 mpg on a long run, but that drops to 26 mpg at 80 mph.
     
  16. BTB 500

    BTB 500 MB Club Veteran

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    Of course - it's barely bigger than the medium-sized panel vans (and their MPV derivatives - Caravelle, Viano, etc.) that are commonplace on UK roads.

    The Vito is actually wider and taller than a GL, and the middle size ('Long') one we have is only 95mm (about 3.5") shorter. No problem in car parks etc.
     
  17. Biscuit

    Biscuit Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    @raymont. do the rear two seats work independently or is it a both up or both down situation?
     
  18. NewMB

    NewMB Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    In my company, at a particular german office, we have based both the ML420 Cdi and ML320 Cdi's.

    Having driven both, I would have to agree with many other comments on here. The 420 engine is just a different world. The 320 is nice and smooth, but the 420 are in a different league with 700 Nm of torque compared to "only" 510 in the 320 (700 Nm is equal to my E55!).

    I have also driven the ML63 AMG and contrary to another members comment, is not slower in-gear than a 420.

    Personally, I will also consider the 420 when time comes to change and the fuel consumption of a 420 will never be a problem coming from the E55.
     
  19. raymont

    raymont Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    They work independently.
     
  20. peterg1965

    peterg1965 Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    The GL is even easier to manouvre (whilst going astern) with the optional reversing camera, but agree that it doesn't necessarily feel like a huge car when it is being driven. People tend to keep out of your way! The rear seats are electric too, - that is they are raised and lowered to/from the upright position with switches that be accessed from the tailgate or the rear doors.
     

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