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2013 Mercedes-Benz M-Class

Overview
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2013 Mercedes-Benz M-Class Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 7.1

In the 2013 Mercedes-Benz M Class, buyers will find an SUV that delivers safety, luxury and the status that comes with having the three-pointed star on the hood. The M-Class's wide and varied trim levels make it a multi-faceted SUV, with a diesel model for those seeking good fuel economy and two V8 engines for the performance-oriented set. Even the base V6 offers a good blend of power and fuel economy, and helps keep the M-Class price in check. This year, a new Off-Road package adds a two-stage transfer case, allowing the M-Class to go head-to-head with the Land Rover Range Rover and Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited.

You'll Like This Car If...

Any luxury SUV can promise a quiet cabin and a smooth ride. But very few can claim a 174-mph top speed on the German autobahns or offer the stump-pulling torque of a fuel-efficient diesel engine. The well-regarded safety features of the M-Class are just another selling point, as is its 7,200-pound tow rating.

You May Not Like This Car If...

While the M-Class can wear many hats, it can't fit more than five people in its well-appointed cabin. Those needing more space might look to the larger GL or even an Audi Q7 or Infiniti JX. Those seeking similar luxury and off-road features at a more affordable price might consider the Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited.

What's New for 2013

For 2013, a new Off-Road package offers a 2-stage transfer case, Airmatic adjustable suspension, locking differential and six selectable driving programs. The ML350 now offers a rear-drive model, while new massaging front seats with comfort headrests join the options list. New standard equipment includes the mbrace2 telematics system and Collision Prevention Assist.

Driving the M-Class

Driving Impressions The 2013 Mercedes-Benz M-Class can tame the hazards of ruts, snow and muck – not to mention rush-hour traffic and speed bumps – while treating its driver and passengers to...

a supple travel experience. The M-Class doesn't feel quite as sporty as its BMW rivals, but it's anything but slow, especially when equipped with a V8 engine. For those who want a more dynamic driving experience, that can be had with the touch of a button that adjusts the suspension. We preferred to leave it on the "comfort" setting to take advantage of this SUV's soft ride. Even at freeway speeds, the cabin is remarkably hushed. Visibility is good, but we still recommend the optional blind-spot monitoring system. Steering feels a tad light at lower speeds and isn't very communicative overall. The M-Class has a relatively tight turning radius of 38.7 feet, which means fewer 3-point turns.

POWER TAILGATE
This feature is a lifesaver when your hands are filled with groceries. Just touch a button on the key fob and the tailgate lifts. Closing is equally simple, either via a button on the door itself or with another press on the key fob.

MBRACE2:
A true leap forward in telematics, mbrace2 is a Cloud-based subscription service that uses your smartphone to connect to the Internet, allowing apps like Facebook, Google and Yelp to be online and at work whenever the car's in motion. Mbrace2 can even download system and map updates.

2013 Mercedes-Benz M-Class Details
Interior

The 2013 M-Class has all the soft-touch materials and wood accents you'd expect in a luxury vehicle. Leather seating will still cost you extra, but even the base "MB-Tex" vinyl provides an appreciable amount of comfort and good feel. That sensation carries over to just about every other component, from the available wood steering wheel to the tiny gear selector, which bucks the trend by being mounted on the steering-wheel column instead of the center console. Rear passengers are treated to ample legroom, reclining seats and movies of their choice with the optional twin LCD screens mounted inside the front-seat headrests.

Exterior

Last year's thorough freshening carries over to the 2013 M-Class. Up front is a revised grille that emphasizes the Mercedes-Benz emblem and sleeker headlights that give the M-Class a more modern look. Adding to the sportier appearance is a sculpted beltline running the sides. The rear benefits from a squatter shape and taillights that are stretched horizontally, which give the 2013 M-Class a more sporting instead of utilitarian look. The high-performance ML63 AMG models are distinguished by a larger air intake up front, wider front fenders and quad tailpipes in back.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

All 2013 Mercedes-Benz M-Class SUVs come with a 7-speed automatic transmission, power sunroof, 8-way heated front seats, power liftgate, dual-zone automatic climate control, 7-inch color center display, Collision Prevention Assist and an 8-speaker AM/FM/CD/DVD mbrace2 audio system with weather band and HD Radio. Safety features include nine airbags and Mercedes' Attention Assist system that monitors for driver drowsiness. ML350 and ML550 versions ride on big, 19-inch wheels, while the top-line ML63 AMG rolls on 20-inchers.

Optional Equipment

Here's where the M-Class' $50,000 base price can quickly inflate. Many options are bundled into packages and include navigation, rear-view camera, blind-spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control and a premium harman/kardon Surround Sound system. Further options include a panorama roof, heated steering wheel, heated rear seats and the Parktronic system to aid with parallel parking. The $5,000-plus Dynamic Handling Package makes for a more sporting M-Class with the addition of 20-inch wheels, air suspension and an adaptive damping system. Buyers of the AMG performance version can opt for a package that adds another 32 horsepower and a top speed of 174 mph.

Under the Hood

Each of the four 2013 M-Class models is distinguished by its own engine. At the lowest-priced end is the ML350 with a still-robust V6. Next is the most fuel-efficient of the bunch, the ML350 BlueTEC with a V6 turbodiesel that puts out tremendous power yet yields up to 27 mpg on the highway and a potential cruising range of more than 600 miles. The diesel is 50-state legal and of the "clean" variety, meaning it doesn't put out the nasty emissions of past diesels, but will require the urea-based AdBlue fluid throughout its life. The ML550 SUV uses a powerful-but-fuel-thirsty V8 biturbo, and the ML63 AMG uses an even bigger, more powerful – and even less fuel-efficient – V8. Even the "slowest" M-Class can accelerate from zero to 60 mph in just over seven seconds, while the AMG version can do it in 4.7 seconds, on par with high-performance sports cars.

3.5-liter V6
302 horsepower @ 6,500 rpm
273 lb-ft of torque @ 3,500-5,250 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 18/22 mpg, 13/17 mpg (E85)

3.0-liter turbodiesel V6
240 horsepower @ 3,600 rpm
455 lb-ft of torque @ 1,600-2,400 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 20/27 mpg

4.6-liter twin-turbocharged V8
402 horsepower @ 5,000-5,750 rpm
443 lb-ft of torque @ 1,600-4,750 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 14/20 mpg

5.5-liter biturbo V8
518 horsepower @ 5,250 rpm
516 lb-ft of torque @ 1,750-5,000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 13/17 mpg

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2013 Mercedes-Benz M-Class Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.3
Out of 10

Based on 28 Ratings for the 2012 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    7.8/10
    Quality
    8.8/10
  • Reliability
    8.4/10
    Performance
    8.3/10
  • Comfort
    8.3/10
    Styling
    9.0/10

Great vehcle, gets the job done with confort.

By on Saturday, February 07, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 30,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Quiet, confortable, interior quality, handling"

Cons: "Controls need to be more intutive and centralized"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"I purchased this vehicle in 2013 and traded in a 2011 BMW 535.This is a two row SUV based on the same platform as the GL which is a longer 3 row design. Both vehicles have the same interior layout with the exact same dimentions minus the extra row. After driving both the GL & ML, I liked the ML, because it handled better. It is also more fuel efficient. It has excellent safety ratings and feels sturdy and stable, at 4700 lbs. One of the selling points of SUVs is safety, regardless of the crash test results with cars. All of the safety features of modern cars,does not make up for mass. The government crash tests are based on fixed objects, not other vehicles. This vehicle rides well and is very quiet. The only downside with taller vehicles is that, there is more wobble on uneaven roads. The extra movement is transfered to the driver because of the extra height. With the electronic stability controls,handling around curves is great in normal driving. The advantage is that the extra height gives the driver of an SUV more protection in a crash with a standard car. The main structure of the SUV rides higher than the structure of a typical car, so the impact of the SUV occurs at the weakest point on the car, but strongest on the SUV. There are many SUVs on the market, but the ML is worth the little extra cost with a higher level of quality."

12 people out of 29 found this review helpful

This is the best suv I've ever owned

By on Saturday, February 07, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 11,564

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Great in town and especially on the highway"

Cons: "No cons"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I love to drive this vehicle. It has great torque(diesel)and acceleration. The fuel mileage is 30+ on the highway and 23+ around town. It easily tows a large trailer and 23 foot boat. My wife drives a new Avalon Limited, but always asks to use my car when she shops. It has so much storage when the rear door seats are down.Great sport utility!"

3 people out of 6 found this review helpful

Best in the long run.

By on Wednesday, January 28, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 50,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Cons: "Leans a little on corners."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"This vehicle is the best for longer trips. Excellent climate system. First week we had it we were driving on the Interstate in South Carolina and the vehicle thermometer indicated 109 degrees outside temperature but cool as a cucumber inside. Same for really cold weather. Most comfortable vehicle we have had for Interstate long distance driving. Also, real easy to get into and out of for tall people."

16 people out of 32 found this review helpful

Outstanding vehicle.

By on Sunday, January 11, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 23,250

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "This is one SUV that is incredibly fun to drive."

Cons: "Bring your wallet..."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This is the most fun car I've ever owned. The engine response and the ease of steering far outpace anything I've had in SUVs in the past. The car simply performs impeccably."

18 people out of 33 found this review helpful

A Quiet and Refined Beauty

By on Friday, December 05, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 120

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Roomy, comfortable and refined."

Cons: "Where do I charge my phone???"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"I just picked up my 2015 ML350 4Matic last week...I opted for a few extra bells and whistles like leather seating,heat and massage, ambient interior lighting and the premium package. Now I'm over 6' tall and well over 200lbs and the ML is probably one of the most comfortable and quiet rides I've ever experienced in any smaller SUV I've ever owned. The leather is plush and the seating is very comfortable. The cabin is very spacious for a smaller SUV. I love the fact that I have that extra leg room. The car has good power and shifts seamlessly. The steering might take some getting used to as it seems loose, but it is very responsive. I can't pretend to be the most technologically inclined, but you have a large 7" LCD, well formatted Navi, and pretty well laid out music controls. I still need to delve into the user guide (which is also uploaded into the cars on board hard drive). I'm testing the MBrace feature, which from what I understand, offers up conveniences like emergency services collision notification, concierge services and auto map and computer updates just like GM's OnStar. Well my preliminary impressions of this vehicle are very good to excellent. The only other option that I believe might be worth having is the "off-road" package which includes air suspension and 20" wheels. But then again, this car's 4Matic feature has been great thus far in in-climate weather conditions. I think it's very good on gas too! (20 mpg City)"

23 people out of 32 found this review helpful

Best car for long distance travel

By on Monday, November 03, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 44,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Comfort, mileage"

Cons: "Wipers sometimes a little spastic."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"Had excellent experience with this vehicle. Fuel mileage remarkable for 5000 lb. vehicle. Comfort best of six SUVs I've owned."

16 people out of 26 found this review helpful

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

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