Benz lifts the lid on four-pot

A diesel from the sedans helps the big SUV’S lean claims

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Prestige -

ex­ist­ing plat­form, hon­ing sus­pen­sion and re­duc­ing weight. The wheel­base stays the same but bod­ies are wider and slightly shorter.

The styling has been toned down, with the im­pos­ing wheel arches of the cur­rent model be­ing re­placed by a more de­mure body line that ex­tends along the flanks. The grille is also less ag­gres­sive and will be a chromed two-bar de­sign lead­ing to slim­mer head­lights.

Cabin treat­ment in­cludes an all-new dash with the cen­tre con­sole’s screen and switchgear placed much higher. The cur­rent round vents have been re­placed with rec­tan­gu­lar units that bet­ter in­te­grate with the new switches and screen.

Rear-end treat­ment is also softer with tail-lights that mimic those of the E-Class.

The en­gines, how­ever, are the big talk­ing point.

In the ML 250 BlueTec 4MATIC, the four-cylin­der turbo diesel will have out­puts of 150kW and 500Nm and will cover the 0-100km/h sprint in 9.0 sec­onds.

In the ML 350 BlueTec 4MATIC, the re­vamped 3.0-litre V6 turbo diesel is quicker, has lower emis­sions and 24 per cent bet­ter fuel econ­omy than the cur­rent V6, while also meet­ing the strin­gent Euro 6 emis­sion cat­e­gory that is not ex­pected to be man­dated un­til af­ter 2014.

It has 190kW and 620Nm (the cur­rent en­gine pro­duces 170kW/540Nm) and can ac­cel­er­ate from rest to 100km/ h in 7.4 sec­onds.

The first petrol op­tion is in the ML 350 4MATIC BlueEfficiency. Its av­er­ages 8.5L/100km and emits of 199g/km CO , com­pared with the out­go­ing en­gine’s 11.4L/100km and 266g/km.

The di­rect-in­jec­tion 3.5-litre petrol V6 pumps out 225kW/ 370Nm (im­prov­ing on 200kW/ 350Nm) and its 0-100km/h time is 7.6 sec­onds against the ex­ist­ing model’s 8.4 sec­onds.

More en­gines, in­clud­ing an AMG, will be added later.

Mercedes says en­gines were not the sole tar­gets in min­imis­ing fuel use and emis­sions. The M-Class gets stop-start tech­nol­ogy, a sev­en­speed au­to­matic, low-fric­tion driv­e­train com­po­nents, elec­tric steer­ing and low-re­sis­tance tyres as stan­dard.

To con­serve en­ergy, com­po­nents such as the air­con­di­tioner com­pres­sor, oil and wa­ter pumps ac­ti­vate only when needed.

Weight re­duc­tion mea­sures in­clude alu­minium al­loy con­trol arms for the front and rear axles and pan­els in­clud­ing the bon­net and fend­ers.

An off-road pack con­tin­ues as an op­tion— though Mercedes-Benz in Aus­tralia says the take-up is only about 1 per cent. Its six-mode au­to­mated ter­rain con­trol sys­tem is sim­i­lar to that in the Range Rover.

Op­tional equip­ment will in­clude ac­tive roll sta­bil­i­sa­tion. Mercedes calls it Ac­tive Curve Sys­tem’’ and it works with the Air­matic air sus­pen­sion, con­trol­ling the anti-roll bars on each axle.

Great green hope: Asuite of more efficient en­gines will slash the M-Class’s fuel con­sump­tion

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.