Date registered: Jul 2010
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VIDEO REVIEW: Mercedes ML550 offers a divine interior, but driving purgatory
A heavenly cabin, but driving purgatory
by Craig Cole
Politics and religion are two topics best left un-discussed. Nothing has the power to ruin dinner with friends or cause a family gathering to erupt like Mount St. Helens faster than debating supply-side economics or universal healthcare. As with da Vinci’s Mona Lisa hanging in the Louvre, it’s best to keep your hands off.
Likewise these subjects have little business being in a vehicle review, but contrary to common sense and better judgment here we go. If you’re Catholic and want to get in touch with your faith consider driving a Mercedes-Benz M-Class.
What does the Vatican have to do with one of Daimler’s high-priced luxury SUVs? Actually very little, but in case you didn’t know, the armor-plated Popemobile is based on the company’s midsize utility vehicle. If it’s good enough for the Holy Father it ought to be good enough for you.
AN M-CLASS FOR EVERY PURSE AND PURPOSE
The M-Class is a capable SUV that fits into the company’s lineup between the small GLK and the three-row GL. It seats five passengers and is offered in a wide array of different trim levels.
If engine output numbers were like flowing water, the base model would be a garden hose. It’s powered by a 3.5-liter gasoline V6 engine that signs, seals and delivers 302 horsepower. The BlueTEC clean diesel serves up a monster 455 lb-ft of torque, which is roughly equivalent to Disney World’s Blizzard Beach water park, though it has a lot less urea. And topping the range is a fire-breathing AMG model with 518 ponies on tap; it’s like Niagara Falls but even more impressive.
Read the complete 2013 Mercedes ML550 Review