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  #11  
Old 03-29-2012, 12:38 PM
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What It Is: A redesigned ML with a very low roofline and a few design cues from the CLS. It will have a big rear hatch and folding back seats. The MLC’s low greenhouse corresponds to the body’s diminished ground clearance.

Why It Matters: Following the unexpected global success of the BMW X6, Mercedes would like to profit from the trend toward “SUV coupes” in Asia, the Middle East, and North America. It’s an expression of  Dieter Zetsche’s desire to make the brand cooler.

Platform: Based on the new ML’s, but about 200 pounds lighter. It will get the ML’s suspension with the next-gen GL’s air springs. An off-road package will not be available.

Powertrain: The MLC will offer a choice of two engines: a new 3.5-liter twin-turbo V-6 making roughly 335 horsepower and a 5.5-liter twin-turbo V-8 with 518 horses (550 with the AMG Performance package). We doubt there’ll be a diesel engine, as the MLC will have limited appeal in Europe.

Competition: BMW X6, Infiniti FX.

What Might Go Wrong: Because of growing competition in the SUV-coupe arena, Mercedes might not sell as many MLCs as expected: The segment’s only good for about 60,000 cars worldwide right now. If China comes up with new regulations against monster SUVs for megacities, sales would crumble there.

Estimated Arrival and Price: Summer 2014. Prices should be about $6000 higher than an equivalent ML.

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Old 04-20-2014, 08:52 PM
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