Buying Guide

2015 Mercedes-Benz M-Class

Fair Market Price $47,884 ML350 4MATIC
Motor Trend Rating
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EPA MPG:

18 City / 24 Hwy

Cargo (Std/Max):

38 / 80 cu. ft.

Seating:

5/5

New for 2015

The Mercedes Benz M-Class receives a number of changes for the 2015 model year. The diesel V-6 is replaced with a diesel I-4, and the ML350 Bluetec in turn becomes the ML250 Bluetec. Up the model line a twin-turbo V-6 replaced the twin-turbo V-8, replacing the ML550 with the ML400. The ML63 AMG continues on unchanged.

Vehicle Overview

The Mercedes Benz M-Class is a midsize SUV that offers variants from the miserly ML250 Bluetec clean diesel to the raucous ML63 AMG that features a twin-turbo V-8. The M-Class fits above the GLK-Class and below the GL-Class in the Mercedes Benz SUV lineup.

Summary

The 2015 Mercedes Benz M-Class SUV is powered by a wide variety of engines, with a couple more-efficient additions for the current year, including a new diesel and top-of-the-range non-AMG gasoline powerplant.

Model: ML250 Bluetec 4Matic

Engine and Transmission: Twin-turbocharged 2.1-liter diesel I-4 – seven-speed auto

Power: 200 hp/369 lb-ft

EPA-rated fuel efficiency: 22/29 mpg

Towing Capacity: 6,600 pounds

Model: ML350, ML350 4Matic

Engine and Transmission: 3.5-liter V-6 – seven-speed auto

Power: 302 hp/273 lb-ft

EPA-rated fuel efficiency: 18/24 mpg – 17/22 mpg (4MATIC)

Towing Capacity: 6,600 pounds

Model: ML400

Engine and Transmission: Twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter V-6 – seven-speed auto

Power: 329 hp/354 lb-ft

EPA-rated fuel efficiency: 18/22 mpg

Towing Capacity: 7,200 pounds

Model: ML63 AMG

Engine and Transmission: Twin-turbocharged 5.5-liter V-8 – seven-speed auto

Power: 518 hp/516 lb-ft or 550 hp/560 lb-ft with AMG Performance Package

EPA-rated fuel efficiency: 13/17 mpg

Towing Capacity: 7,200 pounds

Notable features available on the M-Class include blind spot assist, lane keeping assist, surround view camera, active parking assist, attention assist (when a driver begins to get drowsy, the system will trigger a warning and ask, “Time for a rest?”), adaptive high beam assist, Distronic Plus adaptive cruise control (can fully stop and accelerate the vehicle), a stop/start system, power liftgate, 7-inch infotainment screen, a Bang & Olufsen premium audio system, three-zone climate control, heated second row seats, and a rear seat entertainment system.

The 2015 Mercedes Benz M-Class received a five-star overall safety rating from the NHTSA (out of a possible five stars), and in is considered a 2015 Top Safety Pick+ by the IIHS.

What We Think

The 2015 Mercedes Benz M-Class ranges from efficient and capable in the diesel and mainstream gasoline trims to downright defiant when it comes to the way the AMG-tuned model approaches the laws of physics. In a Driven Review of a 2013 ML63 AMG we explained by saying, “Thanks to Mercedes-Benz’s Active Curve System, which curbs roll like nobody’s business, and the ML63’s air suspension with its adaptive dampers, the ML changes direction while remaining so flat and level that you begin to realize that you’re having fun on a winding road — in an SUV.”

We continued, commenting, “While the ML63 probably won’t fully convince you, a knowledgeable enthusiast, that you’re in a sports car, wicked exhaust burble notwithstanding, it won’t cause you or your passengers to evacuate lunch when you’re carving back roads.” At $40,000 (or so) more than the other nearest M-Class it ought to perform. Stepping back down into the real world, the M-Class is a capable and thoroughly efficient offering in the segment. The change from turbodiesel V-6 to I-4 has increased fuel efficiency, while the same can be seen with the V-8 to V-6 switch at the top of the non-AMG gasoline engine offerings; the question is whether the drop in power will be too significant. With combined gains of 2-mpg (diesel models) and 4-mpg (biturbo gasoline engines) the gains are welcomed, but we haven’t yet sampled the new smaller powerplants. Knowing Mercedes, the new powerplants won’t be excessive, but they won’t also feel underpowered. Excess goes to the AMG model with the Performance Package.

You’ll Like

  • Efficient Bluetec diesel I-4
  • Physics-defying handling of the ML63 AMG
  • Smooth and quiet ride

You Won’t Like

  • Body roll from non-AMG models
  • Less powerfulML250 diesel is only 2-mpg combined better than outgoing ML350 diesel
  • Small infotainment screen

Key Competitors

  • BMW X5
  • Audi Q7
  • Jeep Grand Cherokee
  • Lexus RX
  • Acura MDX
  • Cadillac SRX

Rating

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