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Mercedes-Benz M-class (ML320, ML350, ML500 and ML55) 2005 and earlier



  • chowrchowr Posts: 11
    Thanks to all of you who responded to my question. Unfortunately, the response that I got from the dealer left such a bad taste in my mouth that I ended up getting a BMW X5 3.0 this weekend. I expected the most amazing service from a luxury car dealer and I got it at BMW instead. Good luck to all of you out there. I think the bad thing for me is where I live. There are only two dealers and I guess they can get away with this kind of attitude.
  • What area is your dealer located? Did you have to negotiate to get
    the price below INVOICE? What price did the dealer initially want?
    I'd really appreciate if you could share your experience.
  • mark156mark156 Posts: 1,992
    Jon90, I too would like to know where you got the $3,500 off a 2002 ML500. I would say that is VERY rare. I only have one dealer in my town and there is no way they would have gone that much. I'm glad you got a good deal. I am very satisfied with mine.... the power is awesome. Now, I want Parktronic on all of my future cars!

    Happy Motoring, Mark
  • mercaramercara Posts: 291
    I bought a Thule system from an online store. I don't remember the model. What you need to do is go to the Thule web site and put in the truck details and get the part number. Then you can shop around for it. If i remember the details of the model I bought, I will post it here.
  • After looking around I bought the MB roof rack Cost $268 Heavy duty 250lbs cap they lock on and are a snap to install Good luck G
  • As a long time reader I am amazed at the early mileage writers are quoting as brake and tire replacement time. I have a 2000 ML320 with over 59000 trouble free miles. Tires hit wear bars at 52000 so replaced with original equip (Dun lops) from Sears @$72.00 ea. Brakes haven't squeaked yet although dealer said he'd like to replace pads at 50 since that was their usual policy. Since there's still adequate pad life, the Original pads are still on. I do lots of Mountain driving in Summit County Colorado, but I do downshift on long descents over passes rather than stand on the brakes.

    I ran out of warranty at 50,000 miles but other than to replace a defective nav system antenna, never needed it. This is the best vehicle I've ever owned (note "ever") and I'm in my 60's so have owned many including over ten MB products. I have an E320 which just sits in the garage since all my drivers prefer the ML.
  • My brake light indicator has come on at 35,000 miles (99 ML 320). How much time do I have before I have to replace them and what is the approximate cost of the job?

    Thanks in advance...George
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,110

    If you're lucky, it could just be some air that's made its way into your brake lines - cheap and easy to fix!

  • djdjdjdj Posts: 111
    Even the dealer admitted MB didn't have a cure for the rattling that comes from the metal plates that cover the gap when the seats are folded down. With the seats up, every time I'd hit a little bump they'd bounce and I'd hear it. Those were the only noises left and they really bugged me.

    I finally resorted to using the bungie cords I had bought to keep luggage from rolling around. I ran the cord through the hole in each one and secured the ends to the hooks in the back.

    Now the plates are lightly sprung in the air. They lay flat if any weight is put on them but stay up when uploaded so they don't bang around. Its great now.

    On brakes, my ML320 has 37K miles on it. The dealer just said that they mic'd the front brakes and it will need servicing soon. I told him I'd wait until the light comes on and he dropped the sales pitch. I do a lot of highway driving and downshift a gear instead of braking when its safe. I believe the brake life is very dependent on driving conditions and habits.
  • mercaramercara Posts: 291

    I just ordered a tow hitch from It was $250 + $14 shipping. (No
    taxes on internet sales). Dealers were quoting $295 + tax. I am going to install
    it myself. Does any one know how I can remove the rear bumber?

  • cticctic Posts: 291
    Late reply: How about taping a velcro strip on metal plates. They're real cheap.
  • cticctic Posts: 291
    Mine came on at about 16K. It cost about $225 to have them done plus tax, just the fronts. I'm gonna check out an independent next time.

    I don't tail gate or hit the brakes hard but my wife drives like a maniac so I'd estimate 90% of the brake wear is from her.
  • My wife was ready to get out of her original SLK. We replaced it with an '02 320 in Designo Savanna with everything except Parktronic. The Nappa two-tone seats are sweet, and the whole Designo effect makes the move from sports car to truck less painful (I didn't want her to think it was 'cause she was getting too old for a cool car). Anyway, it's the 1st M Class I've really liked and I got a great deal to boot (in Mobile).
  • cdiccdic Posts: 36
    Anyone here ever replace the front brake pads themselves? Is it easy like other cars? My ML430 is at 14K and they are squeeking a lot (especially in reverse). If you go to the MB parts desk, do you have to ask for anything else besides a brake pad set? My last SUV was a Toyota. Brake pads were real easy to replace, but if you got the pads from a generic parts store, all you got were pads. The Toyota parts department gave you a pad kit with replacement spring clips, shims, special grease etc. What does MB give you with the pads?
  • thor8thor8 Posts: 303
    Are you sure you need brake pads? Brake squealing is caused by high frequency vibration between the pads and the rotor because the pads wear at a slight taper from front to back, at low pressure the front end of the pad is free to vibrate,(the pad is tapered because the front is what comes in contact first and friction tends to grind into the pad at the leading edge) in reverse the taper effect is more pronounced, I bet if you brake hard there is no squealing, that is because the full pad is pressed against the rotor and no room to vibrate.

    Here is a company that sells a compound that should help, it goes on the back of the pad, acts as a cushion allowing the pad to make full contact a lower pressures.

  • Do the Sylvania near-xenon bulbs work out okay in a new ML with std lighting?
  • According to a quality report leaked in Germany, Mercedes quality has taken a big tumble.

  • cdiccdic Posts: 36
    Thor: Thanks for the reply. No, I am relatively sure I do not need pads right now. I was interested in what to do when I do need them, especially if they wear as fast as some seem to be claiming (and as evident by the short time it takes to turn the wheels black).
    Your explanation seems more than plausable to me, like you have been there. Also, the brakes appear to be temperature sensitive, they squeal more when cold and louder when colder. They also stop squealing with increased pressure (more than I like or need to apply) just like as you suggest. The really odd thing is, on my ML430 it is only in reverse. I rarely if ever hear anything while moving forward, but I wake up the neighborhood while backing out of the driveway in the morning. This seems like a different situation than the one you describe with the tapering of pads from forward motion, but perhaps related.
    How much does noise free compound cost?
  • I have a ML 2000 yr. Doe's anyone know if it is normal for the gas pedal to have sideways movement. I had service look at it and they replaced it and said the all ML's have some left to right play. I still have some play, and not much confidence in my service dept.
  • thor8thor8 Posts: 303
    The squealing in reverse is related to the taper, imagine your pads looking like this, a vedge of cheese, the front thiner, when the pads touch, the thicker part, the rear touches first, (at low pressure) allowing the front to vibrate, in reverse is worst because the leading edge now is the thick part leaving the thin part (front) with room to vibrate.

    As far as the black dust and wear they have nothing to do, Mercedes uses a softer pad with high organic (carbon) fillers and binders, this soft pads is what gives the MB this smooth and sure braking, plus the rotor last longer because of less abrasion at the expense of the pad.
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