Owned and driven a ML550 for 3 years / 50000 kms. Have asked MB to reduce the chunky down shifts that cause passengers to fall forwards in their seats...ugh. Acceleration is good in sport mode but the turbo lag causes the vehicle to stall or not move forward in quick turn around situations such as a u turn. Almost a dangerous vehicle. Do not trust the vehicles sensory system to brake when in bumper to bumper traffic. Has no glass breaking sensor so any thief can steal all your contents including spare key fob in glove box. Key fob comes from Munich ya so you pay $500 to replace..ya ya. Cost of repairs are very high so DO NOT OWN MERCEDES WITHOUT WARRANTY. MB only offers a factory 60000 kms warranty! Brake job at 30000 kms cost $3200. Sorry but Mercedes is now a seriously over rated auto manufacturer. Going back to luxury GM products with 6 year 100000 warranty and $100 key fobs and $1000 brake jobs.. if your ego allows do the right thing and dont buy a Mercedes. $$$ in CAD.
The safety features on this car are fantastic. It aces the NHIS safety tests and scored Top Pick in safety, which is one of the main reasons I even looked at the Mercedes brand (which I had otherwise always associated with an older generation). I'm glad I looked though! I was very close to buying a 2013 X5 (last in that generation/platform; 2014 model is noted on review sites as having lots of electrical issues), but heard from a MB-owning friend that he's come to like his ML above the more expensive BMW he also drives (which, he admits, is a more fun driving experience). So I looked at MBs.... first the GL (too big for us), then the ML350 (certified pre-owned from dealer, 2013 bluetec model) . Felt that the gas version lacked torque, felt a little sluggish. So I was *about* to go back to the BMW dealer when MB dealer suggested I test drive the diesel. Wow. WOW! The car grips and feels like you've strapped a booster rocket to your back as it accelerates. As they say, "you read about horsepower, but you feel torque." And, MPG is much better... Ok, back to safety: aside from pre-safe and some of the other standard safety features one would expect from a luxury SUV, I have the driver assistance package on mine which is excellent. Blindspot, for example, doesn't just light up a triangle on the mirror like the Volvo XC90 does, the car notices if you're planning on moving over and if there is someone still in your blindspot an audible alert beeps at you. It's like having a co-pilot drive with you. It also has lane-keeping assist, drowsiness detect, etc etc. Being new to the MB family I find new things every day that the dealer didn't even tell me about that I've come to love ... for example, I have keyless entry which also lets me close window and pano (and lock doors) by touching a special spot on the handle; no need to start the car back up to close forgotten windows!
My only complaint is the COMAND system. It's ok, but certainly not great. The new X5 screen (or the new GLEs for that matter) is *much* better. Nav works fine but I still find I just use my iphone & google maps to get me to where I need to go (to be honest, I did that in the '16 model X5s I rented as well...). Overall I couldn't be more satisfied with this vehicle. Highly recommended as a safe, comfortable SUV that feels like it can take you up a snowy mountain on a winding dirt road, cruises great on highway, and looks good while doing it.
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.