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18 Jul 2012 | Text and Photos by Julian Kho
The latest Mercedes-Benz M-Class brings with it fresh styling, excellent refinement and acres of space, making it one helluva package to beat.
The Mercedes-Benz M-Class, on the other hand, doesn't do that. Instead, as a stylish and rapid way of transporting loads of baggage and groceries, this steroidal-pumped SUV doesn't leave us hanging. It behaves exactly how we would have expected it to behave (on and off-road) and maintains the kind of charismatic charm just enough to get heads turning and having envious whispers amongst the casual passerby.
The third and latest generation M-Class is now more chiselled and handsome, with its sharp and sculpted edges and well-defined lines. Rather than 'renovating' the SUV, Merc 'refined' it, tweaking the headlamps (with daytime running lights now), foglamps and having a more distinct and aggressive grille. You just cannot deny the fact that the design and style of the huge car makes this Mercedes instantly recognisable as an M-Class.
Sharing a similar platform with the Jeep Grand Cherokee, the M-Class still looks the same when viewed from the back. You will need more than just a keen eye to spot the subtle differences on the butt, where separated horizontal lines can be seen, giving it loads of on-road character.
What's good about this car is that it takes off positively. Standing at 4804mm x 1926mm x 1758mm (L x W x H), the big M looks the part of a luxurious SUV where you cannot help but to stare at it without feeling it's snobbish. Loyal followers of the M-Class may reckon that this car resembles too much like the E-Class, failing to give it a beefy appearance. But in a time where carmakers are standardising a new face throughout the models in their stables, we reckon this look could achieve a sense of recognition for the car and should have no qualms in appealing to a wider audience.
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Acceleration (0-100 km/h)