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2003 Mercedes ML350
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was just wondering if it really matters whether or not we use premium gas in our cars. I know the owners manual says we have to, otherwise it can cause engine problems in the future. Does anyone really know?
 

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2001 Ml-320 sport
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45 Posts
ive been using 89 ever since i got this car. so far so good for me. it's been like 2 years now.

my cousin used the car for a week when he stayed with me and he put 87. and still no difference. if u can pay 91 rite now tho, i suggest it. rite now im sticking 89.
 

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ML430 - sold
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929 Posts
This topic is a dead horse....

which has been flogged to death :)

You'll hear from people who insist because its an MB it deserves / needs premium or will accuse you of being cheap, only costs a few $'s more per tank so no big deal etc etc.

For what it's worth when I had my ML over a period of 90,000 miles and 8 years I ran it on 87, 89 and 91 octane for extended period and never noticed any change in MPG or performance and had zero engine problems (shame about the rest of the truck though).

Clearly switching from 91 to 89 would cause the anti-knock control to retard the timing and reduce power a little bit, but with a 5000lb SUV can't say I noticed or ever heard any 'pinking' when running 87.

Bottom line - imho not a big deal either way.
 

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I seriously can't believe this. I know that new ML owners show up on the forum. Great. I joke, but seriously... this is getting out of hand.
 

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Use diesel and call it a day. Diesel gets better mpg. Definitely the best choice. Doesn't matter what MB or what your manual says. Diesel all the way. I have been using it in my ML since 97 and I get close to 60 city. Highway.. forget about it.
 

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1999 ML320
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24,029 Posts
No problems with non premium unless you are lead footed.
Mileage is the same.
 

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500SE AMG, E350 4matic, GL 450
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5,947 Posts
This topic comes up all the time!!!! If you do a search you will find numerous threads about it. Use premium, read your owners manual. Using regular can cause damage to your catalytic converter.
 

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2002 ML 500, 1994 Ford Explorer donated to Doctors without Borders
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2,126 Posts
I'm not surprised that this topic has returned. Yesterday's paper had an article about owners desperately trying to get rid of their "guzzlers". Can you imagine your life if you had been "cool" enough to buy a Hummer H2 instead of your ML? I wonder how much they spend on gas each month.
 

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C9H9N Offensive Odor Exuder
2002 ML320, 2005 S430 4MATIC RIP, 2010 F150 Crew Cab
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11,382 Posts
The ML is hardly a guzzler compared to other SUV's.

If you can't afford to fuel up with 91 minimum, sell the vehicle to someone who can. There is a 10 to 12¢ per gallon difference between 87 and 91. I grow tired of saying the same things over and over again. Use premium.
 

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2002 ML 500, 1994 Ford Explorer donated to Doctors without Borders
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There is a 10 to 12¢ per gallon difference between 87 and 91... Use premium.
I agree. I could save a whole $2 each time I fill up if I used regular.

The ML is definitely a guzzler though, but you're right... There are much worse out there. One of my coworkers says he gets ~7-8 mpg in his explorer. Why in the world would/// well.. you know...:surrender:
 

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2000 ML55
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53 Posts
We should use regular fuel, mineral oil (cooking oil is too expensive) never change any fluids (too expensive and too much labor) never buy tires with the names other than Nanthang or China special, brakes can neglected to the point where only driving up hill will make stooping easy. Save all the money you can (you drive a Benz so people know you loaded) and get if not all at least 3 items: AMG badges (the ebay ones are a better investment) 22” and up rims, 164 grille or at least the 55 one, LED all four corners and don’t forget lost of chrome stick-on . This is the only way you ML will be what supposed to be: long driving show boat no maintenance German technology.
Now my honest opinion READ THE BOOK (usually glove compartment or under the seat storage in your truck). Follow the suggestions the people they built your vehicle mention there and you will be happy
 

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1999 ML320
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24,029 Posts
This topic comes up all the time!!!! If you do a search you will find numerous threads about it. Use premium, read your owners manual. Using regular can cause damage to your catalytic converter.
Can or would ? So will constant start stop driving.
 

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I was just wondering if it really matters whether or not we use premium gas in our cars. I know the owners manual says we have to, otherwise it can cause engine problems in the future. Does anyone really know?
Technically, in my opinion, the vehicle's manufacturer's recommendation on fuel is technically based, as opposed to marketing, politically, or otherwise based.

The engine design engineering team, must make a fuel octane decision at the outset before the design can proceed since it has direct impact on the combustion process and thus the design of the combustion chamber, the induction system, the ignition system, and so on, so that the design goals such as emissions, performance, fuel economy, and etc can be met.

Since people from all walks of life drive their vehicles under a wide ranging operating conditions and fueling them with varying quality of fuel and ratings, the manufacturer does have to take the lowest denominator. And for engines with a knock sensor, there is potentially even more latitude, especially if the manufacturer only suggests premium fuel be used. Hence, for owners that are informed, technically minded, and who understand the issues and know how to deal with them, they often have wiggle room to deviate.

But for many owners/drivers, there is a unfavorable likelihood that they will "damage" their vehicles without knowing, yet. Of course, there are those that are lucky. But then luck, is not something one can usually bank on.
 

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2006 ML500 2002 ML320
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17,581 Posts
Have to agree with thechyiam. But also ponder the fact that Mercedes does not benefit in any way in the oil/gas market. Instructing you to use premium gas HAS ITS' REASONS and those reasons you do not understand.
 

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2002 ML 500, 1994 Ford Explorer donated to Doctors without Borders
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Have you checked how much your ML is worth lately ?
It is likely cheaper than a Honda :-(
Hahahahahah!!!! Civic!!! Hahahahahaha... sob...sob.. sniffle.. sniffle...:surrender:
 

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I have had two different MB technicians (both German born MB veterans of many years) tell me to switch to 89 octane at higher mileage. My 02 ML has about 105,000 and it does run better on 89. When using 93 at very low throttle, just when you being pusing the pedal it hesitates for a sec before going, which is a little scary when pulling out into busy traffic, and it just seems to idle and run rougher for some reason. It seems to like 89 better. Not sure what that says about my engine or fuel delivery system. It's in the shop now for a couple of things this being one of them. We will see I guess. I am sticking w the 89 though. Given how much longer I will likely keep it and MB failure at creating reliable vehicles and thus maintaining a strong resale value for its brand--it's not worth me spending too much more on. (I use Shell or Chevron BTW)
 

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2006 ML500 2002 ML320
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17,581 Posts
I have had two different MB technicians (both German born MB veterans of many years) tell me to switch to 89 octane at higher mileage. My 02 ML has about 105,000 and it does run better on 89. When using 93 at very low throttle, just when you being pusing the pedal it hesitates for a sec before going, which is a little scary when pulling out into busy traffic, and it just seems to idle and run rougher for some reason. It seems to like 89 better. Not sure what that says about my engine or fuel delivery system. It's in the shop now for a couple of things this being one of them. We will see I guess. I am sticking w the 89 though. Given how much longer I will likely keep it and MB failure at creating reliable vehicles and thus maintaining a strong resale value for its brand--it's not worth me spending too much more on. (I use Shell or Chevron BTW)
But did either of them tell you why you should switch to a lower octane, when you reach high mileage?
 
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