I've owned (leased) the ML for a few months now. I turned in a GL which is a full size SUV.
What I like:
The ML has a great ride and very easy steering. For those who like a tight steering wheel, buy a BMW.
This ML is very easy to drive.
I also upgraded to the Harmon Kardon stereo and it is worth the money - crisp and clear with a nice mid range. The ride of the ML is very comfortable. Again, if you like a sporty ride, look else where. I appreciate the comfortable ride, comfortable seats and quietness in the cabin.
In addition, the quality of the materials in the cabin are what you would expect from Mercedes Benz.
What's not to like:
The exterior styling and price.
Quiet comfortable ride. Mercedes Benz' are very reliable vehicles.
Harmon Kardon stereo. Rear camera is excellent. Improved nav system from prior models. Comfortable seats and overall great cabin design.
Bluetooth support (but they all have it even the inexpensive cars).
You definitely pay a premium for the privilege of owning a Mercedes - you really have to weigh whether its worth the extra dough.
The exterior styling is.... meh.
It looks like a lot of other mid size SUV's - nothing special to look at. Although they improved the nav system its not best-in-class and for the price, it should be - no touch screen and voice command is still not perfected.
Driven approx 10,000 miles - half highway /mountainous terrain. It started with buying my wife a 2012 MB E350 a year ago. Was very impressed so I tested the 2013 ML550. I sold my "big" truck suv and bought one ML550 full load. twin turbo, small V8 power/low fuel consumption ratio, comparatively speaking, has me sold. WOW ... does this thing move, smooth ride, quiet and has nearly 100 ft/lbs torque more that the larger 6.2L easy to pull my trailer with toys. Built in anti sway works. My ML fully loaded is equal in cost to a 2013 Escalade.
power with very little "noise", smooth and quiet ride, Infrared night vision, lots of hidden safety features that can also be turned on/off, technology Power:Fuel Consumption ratio, full set of suspension modes allow raising the ML 4-6 inchs or lowering for "sport" mode. joystick media control at right hand console and hands free. seats with massage, heated or cooled. tight turning radius. huge sun roof.
interior lighting. You will want to take it to the track.
Warranty needs to be competitive, Where has the "V8-Twin Turbo" logo at front side panel gone?! nothing on the outside makes the ML550 special, make the ML rear end look better than the Santa Fe or Touareg! The multiple down shifts + "touchy" brakes make for a jerky stop. Add "remote keyfob auto start" in NA versions please and thank you. experiencing Latency in some functions - garage remote, starting procedure, when in standard mode the engine can almost stall before lurching forward before the turbos kick-in during quick highway turn arounds going from fwd to reverse back to fwd ... stall. Solution: Place vehicle in "sport" mode boosting engine idle speed reduces turbo lag.
I bought ML350 with Navigation system.
My wife drives it. I spent some time to get familiar with its navigation system.
It looks like the Navigation system is poorly designed,
no touch screen and typing in address takes a long time, sucks ! (compared with 2005 Toyota Camry V6 XLE's navigation,
Google's navigation, and my portable one,
2013 ML350 is the worst).
Sure, it gots voice command control,
but it is not as easy as inputing addresses, which is what I expected about vioce control.
Brand, keyless feature.
Got a better Navigation with a touch screen and a larger one (Nav on 2013 ML350 is even worse than 2005 Toyota's Nav (2005 v6 XLE).
And also, MBrace is not very useful.
It took me several minute to local my car using my cell phone ($280 per year.
2013 Mercedes-Benz M-Class ML350 4dr SUV (3.5L 6cyl 7A)
I purchased this ML 350 new in August 2012...could hardly wait to get it on the road.....took 3000 mile trip in October and vehicle performed flawlessly......no problems.....then took another 3000 mile road trip in March 2013.....wife and I were almost involved in major accident due to the "map-functioning" of the pre-safe system.....we were in high speed traffic surrounded by about 20 cars....all going in excess of 70 mph.....we were in the middle lane and a car in the lane closest to the side of the road swerved generating the need for an emergency avoidance maneuver on my part.....I stepped on the brakes , which disengaged the cruise control and also swerved to miss the other vehicle this
caused the vehicle to spaz out ...... it locked up and I barely avoided major collision and limped to the side of the road....I turned the ignition off and restarted and fortunately was able to proceed....the next day I took the vehicle in to the local Mercedes dealer whereupon I was informed that "That is the way it is supposed to work"...needless to say I was amazed....a car should never take over control from the driver especially in situations like we encountered...I would never have purchased the vehicle had I been advised of this feature....Needless to say I have traded this vehicle in and will never purchase another Mercedes product