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Old 02-24-2014, 07:48 PM   #1
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Mercedes GL/ML as a tow vehicle

Somebody was moaning on another thread we needed a thread on Mercedes Benz ML and GLs. Here is a couple of pics of mine towing our Safari 30. Since i bought the bunkhouse new back in 06 this is my third tow vehicle. First two were Suburbans, both 3/4 ton and used the drawtite hitch. Now with the GL350 i use a propride and have it set up really well after fiddling alot with it. Tows great. I am going to drive from Texas to Florida soon and look forward to trying it out on a long trip asbi have only had short trips with GL. Love the engine and torque. Vehicle alone i have seen 31 mpg....honest.

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Old 02-24-2014, 08:51 PM   #2
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Very nice. They go well together.
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Old 02-24-2014, 08:57 PM   #3
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I read recently that the newer Dodge Durango and Jeep GC are on the same "platform" as the ML.

what exactly does that mean?
It doesn't use the same power train...body looks different. So what are they talking about when they say "platform?"

/Barge
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Old 02-24-2014, 09:03 PM   #4
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83,000 miles so far

Mostly towing mileage on mine. We use the Hensley hitch with it, towing the same trailer as SafariSS.

So far we've had no issues attributable to towing, except for the frequent comments from people who see it at fuel stops:

1. Does that tow well? (said when eyeballing the 30-foot Safari behind it)

2. Do you know that's a diesel pump?
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Old 02-24-2014, 09:04 PM   #5
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My 2007 ML 320 CDI visited CanAm for a hitch job in October 2012 and then attached via a Hensley hitch to a 2013 25FB International Serenity in Los Angeles for the empty tow home. No issues in the mountains going to Phoenix. I crossed the scales and all was well weight wise.

We loaded the 25FB for camping and crossed the scales. The front axle was overloaded, the GVW was exceeded, and the transmission was not happy with 6, 980 pounds behind the car. The Mercedes service manager was adamant about a 5,000 pound trailer weight limit for that car.

We ended up with a 2012 Dodge Ram 2500HD 4x4 with Cummins diesel. No towing issues with either the 25FB or our new Classic model 30.
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Old 02-24-2014, 09:18 PM   #6
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2014 GL 350 on order

We are anxiously awaiting delivery of our GL. It has a production date of 26 Feb, in two days , we have a spring break trip down the west coast to Jedediah State/Federal? park. We leave Vancouver Island on 15 March. I am not sure if we will have the GL in time. I hope so. I know I will need a couple of days to get the hitch readjusted from the Tundra to the GL, so if it arrives within a day of leaving, we will enjoy one last trip with the Tundra. I read all the threads and posts about ML/GL TVs with much interest.

We chose the Pearl White with the Premium Package (sat nav and all the tech goodies), Sport Package (21 " wheels and tires) and the Driver Assistance Package (lane keeping, blind spot and active cruise control that adjusts to traffic speed automatically).

It's fully loaded as we will most likely be doing 10 000 km trips at least very two years as my family lives in Ontario while I live in Victoria. Comfort is why we bought the trailers, right?

Stephen
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Old 02-24-2014, 09:22 PM   #7
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About 10,000 miles towing so far, 40,000 miles total on the truck.

Had the hitch receiver reinforced for extra peace of mind - welded in triangular gussets to reinforce where the hitch receiver mounts to the tube.

In terms of power - had no trouble pulling the Airstream over the Teton Pass - 22 miles with 10% grade at 8,000 feet, and also up california highway 168 to shaver lake - an 11 mile 7% grade at 5,000 feet - in 100 degree weather.

At 40k miles, I'm about to need new tires for the first time, and I replaced the front brake pads last week - they could probably had gone another 10k if I pushed them.

Definitely get comments and raised eyebrows from 3/4 ton truck people.

I get ever weirder looks from the Mercedes service people when they learn I do my own non-warranty maintenance on the truck. I've found no one at Mercedes - either locally or at MBUSA, who seems to know much of anything about towing with the GL.

I also have had a whole bunch of quality issues with the truck not related to towing. Probably $5k of repairs of various electronic bits that have failed so far that have all been covered by Warranty.

Obligatory Grand Tetons Picture...

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Old 02-24-2014, 09:29 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rluhr View Post

2. Do you know that's a diesel pump?
Hi, Rich!!

"The Station" - New Audi Commercial - YouTube



Next time I see you, you'll know its me cuz I'm gonna yell "HEY LADY!!!!!" at you at the top of my lungs from across the parking lot.



seriously--I'm surprised that people are "surprised" by a Mercedes filling with diesel.
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Old 02-24-2014, 09:41 PM   #9
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What they mean by platform is they share the same suspension components and geometry. The engines and transmissions are different of course and in the case of Chrysler shared platforms they use different brake components but usually bolt to the same pieces.

There are several versions of the GL/ML suspensions. MB use air suspensions now, Jeep is coil springs along with Durango. I find it interesting Chrysler is still using those designs even though Diamler parted ways in 2010. They must have licensed it to them.
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Old 02-24-2014, 11:35 PM   #10
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One more thing... a demo!

Quote:
Originally Posted by rluhr View Post
Mostly towing mileage on mine. We use the Hensley hitch with it, towing the same trailer as SafariSS.

So far we've had no issues attributable to towing, except for the frequent comments from people who see it at fuel stops:

1. Does that tow well? (said when eyeballing the 30-foot Safari behind it)

2. Do you know that's a diesel pump?
Oh, one more thing...

Mercedes towing Airstream
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Old 02-25-2014, 12:46 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chuck View Post

Next time I see you, you'll know its me cuz I'm gonna yell "HEY LADY!!!!!" at you at the top of my lungs from across the parking lot.



seriously--I'm surprised that people are "surprised" by a Mercedes filling with diesel.
I have a diesel Jeep Liberty and I get someone who tries to stop me or warn me about every other fill-up.

Stan
Salt Lake City
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Old 02-25-2014, 04:50 AM   #12
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Ok, its a repeat for some but have to post a pic of mine. It's been a awesome tow vehicle and we love to drive it. 17K miles so far with zero issues, but I did extend my warranty to 7/100K. We're using a ProPride and Prodigy RF.
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Old 03-09-2014, 08:27 PM   #13
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Just got 15.2 down to Orlando from Houston towing Safari 30 bunkhouse.

Sent from my SCH-I605 using Airstream Forums mobile app
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Old 03-09-2014, 08:38 PM   #14
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Towing with a 2006 ML500 and Blue Ox WD hitch. Everything good so far. Payload of the SUV is just under 1,400 pounds so roughly equivalent to a 3/4 ton pick-em-up. Trailer weighs 5,000 dry, SUV is rated for 5,000 pounds in the U.S. and 7,500 pounds in Europe (same SUV), which I have come to believe is a marketing decision. I'm very happy that I didn't buy a new TV.

Poppy
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