David Motton

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From Towcar Awards 2008

List price: £39,485 (when tested) Kerbweight: 2185kg85% Match: 1857kgMax towing weight: 3500kgTowball limit: 135kg

IT MAY NOT have seven seats, and it’s not the quickest car here. But the ML is a very accomplished all-rounder.

Overview

From Towcar Awards 2008

List price: £39,485 (when tested) Kerbweight: 2185kg85% Match: 1857kgMax towing weight: 3500kgTowball limit: 135kg

IT MAY NOT have seven seats, and it’s not the quickest car here. But the ML is a very accomplished all-rounder.

The ride is softer and more forgiving than the Audi Q7’s or BMW X5’s. Even so, it still coped well with the lane-change test, thanks to quick-witted steering and good body control. The 30-60mph time of 14.4 seconds was respectable, too, and engine noise stayed in the background.

Steady

The ML barely broke a sweat on the 1-in-6 test hill. The footbrake held the outfit steady before the torquey engine and 4WD hauled car and caravan up the hill.

The boot took all the luggage and had a 12V socket; the extension mirrors fitted with ease. The £39,485 price tag isn’t cheap, but it is good value.

We say

Towing: 4/5 Solo: 4/5 Practicality: 4/5 Buying & owning: 4/5

Braking 30-0mph: 11.8m

Technical specs

Kerbweight2185 kg
85% KW1857 kg
Towball limit135 kg
Maximum towing limit3500 kg

Verdict

Overall, the Practical Caravan tow car test team rated the ML280 CDI as a luxurious and practical 4x4. But, it only has five seats.

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