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STYLING | 8 out of 10
Mercedes has given its new ML550 the AMG styling treatment
Car and Driver
More aggressive styling
One of my favorite crossover designs. Perfectly proportioned
The 2008 Mercedes-Benz M-Class has gone from brickbats to bouquets. Back in the late '90s, the car featured what Car and Driver describes as "minivan-like styling." In 2006, Mercedes-Benz tried to combat that image by sharpening the exterior lines and imparting a certain degree of toughness to its luxury SUV, giving it "more aggressive styling," according to Edmunds.
The basic shape is now a handsome SUV silhouette, with an arcing roofline. “It's certifiably flamboyant. The castellated grille vanes, cocked beltline, and exaggerated fender flares evoke tail-fin times,” says Automobile.com.
At Mercedes-Benz, 2008 brings visual tweaks to all trim levels of the M-Class. The changes are most noticeable in the top-end models. Kelley Blue Book remarks, "the sleek 2008 Mercedes-Benz ML looks particularly menacing wearing the new ML550 trim." Other reviews read by TheCarConnection.com agree with this sentiment, praising the aggressive new AMG-influenced styling of the ML550. For the lower end of the 2008 M-Class spectrum, the exterior design is not quite as imposing. Forbes Autos refers to the ML320 as having a "wedge-like, tastefully conservative shape."
The styling on the inside of the 2008 Mercedes-Benz M-Class is luxurious, but the car's capabilities as an off-road vehicle are not ignored. Kelley Blue Book is quick to point out that the "padded rails at the bottom of the center console...are more of an off-road touch than [they] expect from the more street-friendly" ML-Class. Automobile.com raves about the balance the M-Class strikes between exuding "a solid, masculine look."
The 2008 Mercedes-Benz M-Class combines sleek sheetmetal with a thoughtfully laid-out cabin.