I have a 2007 ML 350 with 7,300 miles on it. Could not start the car after stopping to fill up with gas. Roadside assistance got me going and I left it at my dealer's night drop off. Needed a new battery, (after 7,300) miles; maybe I got a lemon battery!. Could not believe the battery was under the passenger seat (just found out when I looked in engine compartment and could not find the battery. What happens if a battery goes in the boonies and a gas station needs to replace it; do you wind up with a $1,000 bill because gas station, (if it can or, will) needs to remove the seat to install the battery. Even the English were smart enough to put the battery in the Austin Healy in the trunk when it would not fit under the hood.
Over the years I've bought many 'premium / prestige' vehicles brand new from a variety of dealerships - including BMW, Porsche & MB.
However my last experience with MB and the purchase of a brand new ML has caused me to lose all faith in MB, their products, MBUSA and their after sales support.
Suffice it to say, after many problems and many unscheduled trips to the dealer, I was finally compelled to sell the ML and replace it with a Lexus RX400H.
Granted not quite the same vehicle, but in terms of fit and finish, reliability and after sales service, I truly think Lexus is the new MB.
American Mercedes dealers will treat you as a king if you pay cash. That is very true...
Three seconds after you've finished paying for the vehicle, you become a cash cow paying for endless repairs/maintenance and they don't care anymore if you paid cash or not.
There is no free maintenance for 2005 ML owners.. Each one will cost you $600.00+ and a complete brake change will run you $1500.00+..
I have a 2005 ML 500, in excellent shape, and now the MB dealers will only give $9000.00 for trading it. They offer half the blue book price because they say they are too unreliable and they need too many repairs..
As an investment, they are a very poor investment since there is no good quality/reliability in the new Mercedes models. Mercedes vehicles are a ripoff since their value falls to nothing in a couple of years due to being so unreliable and containing poor quality/designed parts.. Go and check how much your vehicle is valued now, and see where your cash has gone... or go to a Mercedes dealer and try to use it for trading for another Mercedes..
I had more than one brand new Mercedes ML and have been in the forums for more than 10 years. You only find people desperately trying to fix their ML's and trying not to be ripped off by the Mercedes dealers.
This car is so unreliable that it will let you stranded in the middle of the highway or in the middle of nowhere... Very bad electronic quality and too many rip-offs from the Mercedes dealers on parts, labor, and the very rude MB customer service.
I have been researching the 2005 ML 500, as a friend will sell me his. It has about 53000 miles and is the Sports edition. It looks great.
I also have a MB 300sd 1985, the best car I have ever owned. One computer on this car and 30mph/dsl. Also I have a 1999 300TD. So I was looking at the ML because I am going to give the 1985SD to my daughter. It appears that there are problems with the MB SUV.
Oh, by the way the 2005 he may sell it to me for $17,000. Would anyone out there buy it, or look at a different SUV?
Apologies to all that buy new Benz. I have consistently bought Used MLs. Got my 1st (1999) in 2004 for $11,000, had 99k, got 79k miles on it so far (still going) and I have maintained it by myself since then.
My newest is a 2006 ML350. I bought it in March 2009 at 24k for $24,500; has 32k now, still has the smell of a new car, drives very nicely. Yap! my friends and neighbors think I am one of those well loaded guys.
My proud brother in-law bought a New ML350 last year for 47k (thought I was pulling too big and wants to measure up. For that kind of money, I told him to buy a Lexus but he thought I was going to be more classy and perceived as richer - ha! If he could only see beyond his big nose). Nice - but his loan is killing him now and he is just beginning to experience Benzomatic blues.
Yes, today's M-Benz are quite pricey, but overall, they are still good cars; their second hand value is what makes me buy them. They are as cheap, maybe not as easy to maintain, as a new well loaded Toyota Rav 4. Although I won't be caught dead in a $24,000 Rav 4, just compare that price to my huge, fine looking, aggressive, well loaded, very accident safe, prestigious $24,000 ML350. Sorry rich guys, but can you tell the difference when I zoom past in my low cost shiny, GQ Benz-o-Renzo? Noo!
Overall, M-Benz are good vehicles, but are over priced and too frequently troubled cars. Actually, can any one mention an over priced car that is efficient? Rolls? Maserati? Bentley? Porsche? These are no exceptions, and for the right price I'll pick up a Rolls, but they don't come cheap and they are not efficient.
Guys, it is not the efficiency, it is affluence; got money to waste, buy an overly expensive car, throw away affluent driver's looks and you'll see how much efficiency your money will get you.