Replacing a Jeep, is an ML a fair choice?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by JohnRutter, Apr 16, 2017.

  1. JohnRutter

    JohnRutter Active Member

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    C63 AMG V8 Wagon, Jeep V8, Manta V8, V6 Stratos Replica
    I've run a few Jeep Grand Cherokee V8s over the past 15 years or so and they have been a really good fit for my needs.

    First, it needs to be able to tow a car trailer with rally car on it. A high towing capacity is therefore a requirement. Also a right bugger that the C63 isn't type approved to have a tow bar fitted :-(

    All-wheel-drive is a strong preference, definitely not keen on fwd cars.

    Dog-friendly load bay, hence an SUV or Estate.

    Some comfort is appreciated, so not an old Land Rover or similar.

    Decent space in the boot area to hold set of wheels, tool boxes, trolley jack, axle stands, water, fuel jerry cans (usually 2x20L), tarpaulin, tow straps and various other sundry service and spares.

    Vehicle needs to be able to lug all this stuff whilst towing, preferably with performance to cope with hills, long inclines, and grunt to make it easy.

    When not loaded up, would like to have something I can still enjoy driving.

    Won't be looking for a new car, want something with depreciation hit already covered but without straying too far into 'needs maintenance' mileage history.

    Oh, did I not mention, I don't care for oil-burners, even really good ones. Large capacity petrol motors are what I like.


    Not keen on Range Rovers or Disco's, nor on BMW X5s for this.

    Newer, but not latest, model of Jeep GC might be what I'd plump for.

    Maybe stick my neck out with a Cayenne, fugly or not.
    Boring option could be a VW Toerag (sp) though with fair-sized engine.
    There are some Mitsu/Nissan AWD choices out there, though some are more truck-like. I don't really want anything larger than the Jeep for regular use.

    Now that I've joined the Mercedes fold, have to consider if an ML would be a reasonable alternative the the Heep.


    Aware that changes in build quality for Merc had been reported for many years since the 'good old days' of engineered cars, and have a feeling the ML was part of the reported decline. How true is that likely to be?


    Any experience and recommendations for a fun vehicle to occasionally tow with?


    I suppose the other options I should sound out may be some other C-class estate, that is towbar-legal, so non-AMG. What about those, any thoughts?


    Thanks in advance for any comments.
     
  2. gaz_l

    gaz_l Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    SUV, petrol, big engine. Like the cut of your jib.

    Outwith your suggestions, how about:

    Toyota Landcruiser 4.7

    Volvo XC90 4.4

    Cadillac Escalade? :D

    Cheers,

    Gaz
     
  3. SPX

    SPX MB Club Veteran

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    Budget?
     
  4. RonFleet

    RonFleet Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I arrived at San Francisco International airport a few years ago and went to pick up my rental car (it was a business trip). The helpful chap on the desk told me that a compact had been booked for me...but for a few dollars more (per day), he could put me in a Cadillac Escalade. Sounded a good idea. I took the offer. Bit of a big car for one person, but I put up with it. :D
     
  5. gaz_l

    gaz_l Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Pretty big..

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PI_Jl5WFQkA

    Cheers,

    Gaz
     
  6. OP
    OP
    JohnRutter

    JohnRutter Active Member

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    Location:
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    Car:
    C63 AMG V8 Wagon, Jeep V8, Manta V8, V6 Stratos Replica
    Toyota would be a great workhorse though expect it to drive like a truck and is bigger than we want for general day-to-day use.

    Volvo, might be good cars, hadn't realised they had that V8 (just looked at them). But we aren't a Volvo-driving family. Looks and image not for us.

    Caddy, ha. Entertaining idea. Impractical really. Nice thought all the same.
    If going that way, SRT-10 Dodge truck would be the one ;-)
    The Yank pickups are too wide for common use, especially around the country lanes where I live.

    btw, the Jeep SRT-8 would probably be a hoot but is not type approved for towing; has no gvw listed, cannot have a tow bar. Oh, and the central exhaust outlets on those would be a problem if trying to fit a bar!
     
  7. OP
    OP
    JohnRutter

    JohnRutter Active Member

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    Fair question, I hadn't given any indication.
    Would ideally be looking at sub-10K to spend on this vehicle.
     
  8. Cymruambyth

    Cymruambyth Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    BMW X5? Range Rover Sport?
     
  9. Meldrew2

    Meldrew2 Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Mine: BMW X1 2.0d M-Sport & BMW 420d M-Sport+ Cabrio Hers: BMW X1 1.8d SE (sorry, guys)
    My old W163 ML350 (3.8 Petrol) has enough power to embarass GTI drivers, comfortable seats and - since I changed the standard 15" wheels for 17" - handles nicely on the twisty stuff.

    Now 12 years on from being bought as an ex-demonstrator, it's still a great 4x4.

    I'm told that the W164 is even better...
     
  10. Abb

    Abb Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    A bit out of the box, but ticks a good few of your boxes ;)......E55 AMG Wagon
     
  11. SL300-24

    SL300-24 Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I've got a 2004 ML350 inspiration with the 3.7 litre V6 and it would do all that you ask, for less than 50% of your budget....worth a look
     
  12. Vitobrabus

    Vitobrabus Active Member

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    I would seriously consider a lwb shogun. The 3.2 derv really pulls and they ate awesome load loggers and Tow vehicles. The independent suspension still gives decent handling and ride.
     
  13. Doodle

    Doodle Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Ocean liner would probably be more accurate. They're pretty much bombproof and will bump-start the world should it ever stop turning. The space and comfort grows on you though - it's only myself and my fiancee but we're seriously considering buying another one.
     
  14. Darrell

    Darrell Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    One of my Porsche driving mates has one. He reckons you can hit the curb at 40mph without a problem. Top car.
     
  15. SPX

    SPX MB Club Veteran

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    I know you said you'd prefer petrol but they're that thin on the ground I'd say you should just be able to sneak a GL 420 CDI for £10k which would tick every other box.
     
  16. OP
    OP
    JohnRutter

    JohnRutter Active Member

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    West Berks here
    Car:
    C63 AMG V8 Wagon, Jeep V8, Manta V8, V6 Stratos Replica
    Just looked up the GL, seems it is a 7-seater, which is something I don't need.

    I get that diesel lumps can produce great torque figures, but I like some revs and also an enjoyable noise to my drives.

    Thanks for input though
     
  17. OP
    OP
    JohnRutter

    JohnRutter Active Member

    Messages:
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    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2015
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    West Berks here
    Car:
    C63 AMG V8 Wagon, Jeep V8, Manta V8, V6 Stratos Replica
    ML350 would seem about the right sort of size. Some odd colour choices of interior trim out there though.

    I think an ML55 could be a bad idea though
     
  18. Chris-S

    Chris-S Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Quite like our 5.7 WK GC John. Certainly ticks all the requirement boxes I think. Had ours converted to run LPG when we got it too, so running costs are more bearable. Only issues so far, front diff rubber mounts expired. An OK DIY job to replace. Starter solenoid started to go a bit intermittent so replaced the entire starter. Transmission cooler pipes leak very slightly where they go from steel to rubber. They all do this as you no doubt know having had some! Front lower balljoints. Again, an easy enough DIY job. I opted to replace the joints rather than the entire lower arms. Much cheaper. Had to put a new thermostat in it recently as well as it was slow to warm up and threw a code to that effect. Again, another simple DIY job and parts not expensive. Oh, and of course, the Hemi Tick. I'll live with that as it only does it when cold. Not too bad for 95k miles bearing in mind the car had a hard life to start with towing mobile generators for the first 80k of its existence.

    Performance is OK for a truck - quicker to 60 than the old Alfa 166 was. Somewhat bizarre that our C350e makes more torque than a 5.7 V8 though. Interior on the Overland is OK too, some nice pleather(!) and faux-wood(!!). Ours has the Boston Audio sound system which is OK. The 4x4 system is pretty capable. 16 spark plugs is a bit of a PITA though. Takes ages to change that lot.
     
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  19. daveenty

    daveenty Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    There is a fitting for a tow bar on the SRT8, which circumvents the central exhausts on the WH/WK models. The holes are already in place in the rear subframe for it. There are a few threads about it over on the SRT8 forum though not many UK specific ones.

    I found THIS ONE from a few years ago, though my search skills let me down this morning.

    You may however struggle to get an SRT8 within your £10k budget as they still seem to be bringing good money, probably due to the rarity value. However, if comfort is important to you, I'd suggest the 5.7 Hemi as opposed to the SRT8 as the suspension is softer and the tyres have something which resembles a sidewall. This was the reason I sold mine as it was really harsh on my lower spine. :(

    I currently have a Range Rover 5.0 Autobiography though may be looking to swap this out for a ML (or probably GLE) later this year or early next, but will need to try one first as comfort is a priority nowadays.
     
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  20. OP
    OP
    JohnRutter

    JohnRutter Active Member

    Messages:
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    Location:
    West Berks here
    Car:
    C63 AMG V8 Wagon, Jeep V8, Manta V8, V6 Stratos Replica
    Cheer Chris, thanks for the comments.

    We've had WJs over the years but they are all now showing their age.
    The WK Hemi would be our first preference to replace the old Jeep, but thought it'd be worth seeing what others may suggest.
     

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