M-Class has won record numbers of new customers thanks to its blend of prestige refinement, a luxurious interior and, in the case of the diesel model, frugality. With a lofty driving position and spacious cabin, the ML 270 CDI is becoming a must-have family vehicle – and it can back up its promise in everyday life.
Add the security of an advanced permanent four-wheel drive system, particularly welcome on wet and greasy winter roads, and the M-Class’s features become even more attractive. When the going gets really sticky, the car’s 4-ETS electronic traction system takes care of things. Muddy rutted tracks, steep inclines or descents, even rivers can all be tackled with ease and in serene comfort.
The powerful 2.7 CDI engine has plenty of torque – 370Nm is available from 1,600 to 2,800 rpm, and whether the view through the windscreen is of a busy motorway or bumpy forest track, the M-Class takes everything in its stride.
Dermot Kelly, Director Mercedes Benz Passenger Cars and smart said: "Our customers have clearly seen that buying and owning a Mercedes Benz is more cost-effective than some people might think.
"The luxurious nature of cars like the S 320 CDI and ML 270 CDI is balanced by their efficient diesel engines – which help keep running costs down. When Mercedes Benz launched the world’s first diesel car way back in 1936, we started a commitment to this technology that has endured."
Dermot continued: "It’s great that this year’s record numbers of customers recognise that Mercedes Benz still offers cutting edge diesel technology in a wide range of cars unmatched by our competitors."
To reinforce the performance of the cars, every new S-Class and M-Class bought in the UK from an authorised retailer has a three year unlimited mileage warranty as standard. This is teamed with ASSYST variable service intervals, designed to keep maintenance costs as low as possible. Backed up with the remarkable 30-year mobilo-life breakdown and anti-corrosion warranty, these popular CDI models will provide years of reliable service. Strong residual values mean that whole life costs are also kept to a minimum.
Additionally, every new M-Class comes with a complimentary Experience day. Based at one of 11 country estates, new owners can test a car similar to their own in a selection of challenging natural obstacles. It’s a great day out – both for those who’ve never ventured further off road than a Chelsea pavement - through to intrepid types who fancy brushing up on their mud-plugging skills.
Next year sees the introduction of yet more diesel models. The CLK 270 CDI combines svelte coupé lines and a penchant for sipping fuel, while the executive E 320 CDI Saloon completes a three-engine diesel range in an important market segment.
The S 320 CDI starts from £47,645 on the road; the ML 270 CDI is £29,395.Published 22 December 2002