The new Mercedes ML is set to become the world's fastest-accelerating 4x4
18 August 2005

The ML63 AMG, the new range-topping M-Class off-roader from Mercedes-Benz, is to receive its world premiere at the Frankfurt motor show in September. Powered by an all-new naturally-aspirated 6.3-litre V8, the monster ML is scheduled to arrive in UK showrooms next May. Its new engine is said to be the most powerful naturally aspirated eight-cylinder engine in regular production, and producing a mammoth 510bhp at 6300rpm and 465lb ft of torque at 5200rpm. This propels the ML63 AMG from 0-62mph in just 5.0sec, 0.6sec faster than the Porsche Cayenne Turbo, and on to an electronically-limited top speed of 155mph.

The newly developed AMG Speedshift 7G-Tronic seven-speed automatic gearbox takes care of delivering that power to the road, and provides a choice of three shift modes - Sport, Comfort and Manual – to ensure the engine is always used effectively. Changing gears in manual mode can be handled with gearshift buttons on the steering wheel. The permanent four-wheel-drive is also engineered with a ratio of 40:60 between the front and rear axles to enhance the car's dynamics, with the Airmatic air suspension and adjustable dampers also tuned by AMG.

In keeping with the sporty nature of the car, AMG sports suspension is fitted featuring automatic height control and an adaptive damping system (ADS), helping to ensure stability during high speed cornering. Also fitted as standard are 19-inch alloy wheels with 295/45 R 19 tyres, with 20-inch alloy wheels with 295/40 R 20 tyres available as an option.

The car’s interior features leather upholstery, multicontour heated seats, leather sports steering wheel and stainless steel sports pedals. Standard safety features include driver and passenger airbags, crash-responsive head restraints and belt tensioners with force limiters.

Our Verdict

Mercedes-Benz M-Class

The Mercedes M-Class is luxurious and well-equipped. Shame the chassis lets it down on ordinary B-roads

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