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I've got access to a great off-road video from MB but it is in a flash format that I can't save for some reason. It shows the W164 on the off-road track at the plant.
 

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GregW / Oregon - 3/26/2005 11:49 AM

From German MSN Auto test
LOL, they're off-roading in an ML with the Appearance Package (I think!) and those 19" wheels!

Thanks for the pictures, Greg.
 

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Drew - 3/26/2005 2:45 AM

LOL, they're off-roading in an ML with the Appearance Package (I think!) and those 19" wheels!

Thanks for the pictures, Greg.
Those are the optional twin-spoke 18s.
 

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Wow.....

With that lack of wheel travel, you would HAVE to have the locking differentials to take a W164 off road.....

Any loose matterial and you are down to 2 wheel drive just like that....
 

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Did the previous M-class have more wheel travel?? This new M-class has almost zero wheel travel...i guess that's why it is so good on-road. I agree...you need the Off-road Package if you plan on taking the new M-class off-road.
 

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saigonsmuggler - 3/29/2005 12:26 PM

Did the previous M-class have more wheel travel?? This new M-class has almost zero wheel travel...i guess that's why it is so good on-road. I agree...you need the Off-road Package if you plan on taking the new M-class off-road.
The previous M-class seems to have more wheel travel, but doesnt come close to that of a solid axle vehicle.
 

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MLOffRoad - 3/29/2005 2:13 PM

saigonsmuggler - 3/29/2005 12:26 PM

Did the previous M-class have more wheel travel?? This new M-class has almost zero wheel travel...i guess that's why it is so good on-road. I agree...you need the Off-road Package if you plan on taking the new M-class off-road.
The previous M-class seems to have more wheel travel, but doesnt come close to that of a solid axle vehicle.

A solid axle makes a HUGE difference.

But then I would not be using either for hard core off road use. Mostly just for towing the off road rig on site.

But for the casual back road driver, the vehicle would work ok. My concern with the lack of wheel travel is off camber situations. As your tire goes off ground, the vehicle can become much more "tippy" and in the hands of inexperience off road drivers, panic can cause a bad case of lead foot and roll overs.

Does MB or have they in the past, done any kind of off road training classes?(ala Range Rover or Jeep)
 

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TheOgre - 3/30/2005 12:17 PM

MLOffRoad - 3/29/2005 2:13 PM

saigonsmuggler - 3/29/2005 12:26 PM

Did the previous M-class have more wheel travel?? This new M-class has almost zero wheel travel...i guess that's why it is so good on-road. I agree...you need the Off-road Package if you plan on taking the new M-class off-road.
The previous M-class seems to have more wheel travel, but doesnt come close to that of a solid axle vehicle.

A solid axle makes a HUGE difference.

But then I would not be using either for hard core off road use. Mostly just for towing the off road rig on site.

But for the casual back road driver, the vehicle would work ok. My concern with the lack of wheel travel is off camber situations. As your tire goes off ground, the vehicle can become much more "tippy" and in the hands of inexperience off road drivers, panic can cause a bad case of lead foot and roll overs.

Does MB or have they in the past, done any kind of off road training classes?(ala Range Rover or Jeep)
The W163 ML is PLENTY capable in the right hands ... and I do not believe they really offered good learning classes like Land Rover does.

 

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MLOffRoad - 3/30/2005 12:37 PM

TheOgre - 3/30/2005 12:17 PM

MLOffRoad - 3/29/2005 2:13 PM

saigonsmuggler - 3/29/2005 12:26 PM

Did the previous M-class have more wheel travel?? This new M-class has almost zero wheel travel...i guess that's why it is so good on-road. I agree...you need the Off-road Package if you plan on taking the new M-class off-road.
The previous M-class seems to have more wheel travel, but doesnt come close to that of a solid axle vehicle.

A solid axle makes a HUGE difference.

But then I would not be using either for hard core off road use. Mostly just for towing the off road rig on site.

But for the casual back road driver, the vehicle would work ok. My concern with the lack of wheel travel is off camber situations. As your tire goes off ground, the vehicle can become much more "tippy" and in the hands of inexperience off road drivers, panic can cause a bad case of lead foot and roll overs.

Does MB or have they in the past, done any kind of off road training classes?(ala Range Rover or Jeep)
The W163 ML is PLENTY capable in the right hands ... and I do not believe they really offered good learning classes like Land Rover does.


I am sure that the 163 is quite capable. It has a ladder frame, and a suspension that is tuned for off-road instead of car ride cush.

It just depends on where you are going to take it.

I would not feel comfortable taking my ML past a level 2 trail as the lack of a solid axle and the inability to go with oversized tires would tend to make it less "survivable" on 3+ trails.

My examples of 3+ trails might include the following:


Level 3


Level 4


Level 5
 

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33 inchers arent oversized enough for ya ?? LOL

Honestly though .. I know what you mean. This truck is not a dedicated trail rig, but like many others I enjoy the luxury and class that comes with the silver arrow as well as being able to go pretty far off the beaten path unlike most other SUV's these days.
 

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True, true...

And 33"s are a bit small for the Jeep group I run with....

We have a dude that has done some major league fab work and has taken a 97 TJ, done a body chop, left the 4 popper in, dropped a set of Rockwells in front and back, with the planetary gearing at the hubs, dropped in a 6:1 1st gear NV4500 trany, a 4:1 Atlas transfer case WITH an underdrive!!!!

He is also running 50" special mount tires with 20" rims with 4 wheel steering and a hydraulic assist for further suspension travel.....

We have some hardcore rock rangers around here....
 

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TheOgre - 3/31/2005 1:42 PM

True, true...

And 33"s are a bit small for the Jeep group I run with....

We have a dude that has done some major league fab work and has taken a 97 TJ, done a body chop, left the 4 popper in, dropped a set of Rockwells in front and back, with the planetary gearing at the hubs, dropped in a 6:1 1st gear NV4500 trany, a 4:1 Atlas transfer case WITH an underdrive!!!!

He is also running 50" special mount tires with 20" rims with 4 wheel steering and a hydraulic assist for further suspension travel.....

We have some hardcore rock rangers around here....
Now that is HARD CORE ... I cant touch that. LOL

You wheel your ML ?? Have any pics ??
 

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The ML has never seen the light of dirt....

I have a mild by comparrison Jeep with 33's and swapped axles that I do my ground pounding with.

My ML is more of an in town hockey gear hauling machine.

That is what disappoints me about the 164 thus far.

All the discussion of lower cargo space is gonna blow if I have to load a bucket of pucks, sticks, skates, and gear bags, and there is LESS room!!!
 
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