2001 Mercedes-Benz M-Class ML320 from North America - Comments

2nd May 2010, 04:27

I owned a MBZ ML 320, this car looks sharply good, however the inside guts are JUNK that require constant repair. You cannot go on a mile without worrying that you might get stuck on the freeway. I have spent as much on repairs as I paid for the car... This car is JUNK. PLEASE, BEFORE you buy any Mercedes, think many times...

22nd May 2010, 15:34

I own a 2001 ML 320, and it is the absolute worst car I have ever owned in my life!

The very first week the window switch broke, and I could not get the window back up..

The brake pads go out what seems to be like every 3 months, and I have had to replace the ABS thingy that ran me $3500..

The gear shift has broken, and NOW I'm being told the center bearing UNDER the gear shift is busted and there may even be further damage!! I guess at 185,000 miles it's time to let it go, because the breakdowns are too costly and way too frequent.

BTW.. find a Mercedes mechanic that works OUTSIDE the shop. My guy is great and worked in our local MB dealer, and told me how they used to tell him to lie to customers to get them paranoid so they would keep coming back for service. SMDH..

Also the 2007 S550 that I purchased in June of 06, got a blown tire in the first week of me owning it!! They said the light that read "tire low" was faulty and that I should have just ignored it, but not before they hyped me up to buy $1200 worth of tire protection insurance, which is ALSO a scam because ultimately THEY get to decide which tire damage they will cover!!

Mercedes Benz is full of S*^$!! All their cars are overpriced pieces of trash.. NEVER AGAIN!!! I'm getting a Chevy Tahoe!

9th Sep 2010, 10:42

I concur with pretty much all comments. I have had the same exact problems as most of you! It's a piece of garbage. Every other month it's something else!

21st Nov 2010, 17:19

I am the not so proud owner of a 2001 ML320. I foolishly traded in a Cadillac STS for this rolling box of problems.

We needed an AWD SUV to get our 3 kids around in New England weather, and thought this would be a good choice. UGH!

Well, I have had ALL of the problems listed in this string of posts, and I have also been to 2 auto repair shops that service MB cars, and have been taken for a good deal of hard earned money. And every time I say I will get rid of it.

So recently, when the ABS ESP BAS and BRAKE warning lights were lit on the dash, I decided that the best thing to do would be to take it to a MB dealer to get the issues resolved quickly. That turned out to be a huge mistake. I was given a verbal estimate of $3010 to replace the ABS pump that would continue to run even with the car is turned off. The total verbal estimate to correct everything including brakes & rotors was $9880!

It cost me $190+ to pull the car out of there. I traced the problem myself to a bad ABS relay, and replaced it for $11.

Most Mercedes "clients" would have probably just paid the bill and returned when they still had the same problem.

This car and the MB parts for it are simply junk. It has nothing to do with American workers assembling these cars in the US as one poster commented. It wasn't engineered in the US, and the parts weren't manufactured in the US either. I am switching back to reliable GM products. This time I mean it!

31st Dec 2010, 23:32

I’m from Germany, and came to the US (Austin, TX) with my family 4 years ago. The first car we bought here was a Plymouth Voyager SE Van 1993 164k on it. That was a nice van, and it was working perfect. Had only to repair a part of the wiper mechanism and refill the AC.

After my wife and me found both work, we bought a 2001 ML320 with 144k in 2008. I got the car for a good price, and since I basically grew up in Mercedes and Volkswagen, there was no doubt for me having a good used car, where I expect maybe 2 minor repairs a year.

The first thing that came up was the Check Engine Light with the well known P0400 error of the EGR valve. It took me several months to repair that, since I’m not very confident in the MB service stations.

The guy that had the car before me went through all the recall issues, and after all the reviews, I think I had all of the failures that have been listed here and in other forums.

For me as a German, driving VW Golf (Rabbit) and MB E230 all my life, and have been to the German service stations for maybe a fuel pump or a body work every couple years, it was a quiet unusual experience with the ML and Mercedes. The ride is nice, like you expect it, but these permanent repairs really get on my nerves now. I can repair most of the stuff on my own, but it really adds up now. Instrument lights went off, remote keys (both) were quitting the same time, but still could drive!), front drive shank broke (it’s OK after 190k), interior is noisy, brake pads don’t last long and so on.

After driving around now with a broken air grid on the dash board and a utility holder that felt off in the passenger door (I gave up on repairing cosmetic parts on this car), my wife got stranded this morning with the start engine error. The car knows the error, but doesn’t show an error code in the OBDII!

I know, when I or somebody else fixed that problem, something else will pop up next month. Every time I start the car on a cold morning (less 40F) the steering mechanism makes noises.

Make a long story short, I never had so much trouble with a used car like that, and I know, that I will get rid of that car as soon as possible. I rather buy a small “Made in Germany” car like VW, AUDI, BMW or when I need a bigger car a Chevy, Dodge or Chrysler. I will not buy a Asian car, that’s clear, right?

Thanks to all the people in the forums according to this subject for the honest opinions and the technical help.

2nd Jan 2011, 19:56

My sympathy on getting one of the not-so-well-built ML series. They were nearly as problem-plagued as Toyota. Current studies still indicate Mercedes as lagging in quality and reliability, as is Audi. BMW, VW and Porsche, however, seem to have made great improvements in the current models. You are wise to avoid Asian brands. All of them, with the exception of Hyundai, are dropping in quality and reliability like a brick. Resale values are also taking a tumble, as domestic cars are proving to be much better built and longer-lasting. Ford and GM are currently leading the field in build quality, and the new Chrysler 200 just got rave reviews in the latest test.