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There are a lot of car stereotypes out there, like that Toyota builds dull appliances. While true on many fronts, the Japanese automaker does also make exciting sporty cars like the Scion FR-S, and Lexus LFA, both praised for their exhilarating rides, edgy styling and pulse-raising performance. But there’s another stereotype that needs to be dealt with.
Likely you’ve heard the phrase “German engineering” more than a few times in your life and there’s a popular misconception that it equals good reliability. German cars are well engineered, sometimes to be amazing performance machines and sometimes to be incredibly high-tech (and often both) but, Porsche aside, German cars don’t have the best track record for reliability.
Another Mercedes-Benz model, another Brabus creation. Brabus unveiled their tuning program for the new M-Class and announced that its official debut will be at the upcoming Essen Motor Show. Brabus modifications for the new M-Class encompasses every facet of the vehicle, outfitting the M-Class with a body kit, engine upgrade and interior changes.
Starting with the aesthetics, Brabus gives the M-Class an all new front spoiler and attachments for the air inlets for the front end. Their new side skirts feature puddle lights and optional door sills with the Brabus logo. For the rear, Brabus offers an all new rear bumper and spoiler that attaches to the tailgate. And best of all, all Brabus body accessories are manufactured in Pur-R-Rim plastics, the same material used by factory Mercedes.
As always, wheel offerings from Brabus range from 18- to 22-inch with a variety of styles. Brabus recommends a 22-inch fitment, with their Monoblock VI, E, Q and G “Platinum Edition” wheels. Brabus will pair up the wheels with your choice of Continental, Pirelli or Yokohama tires with sizing up to 295/30/22 front and back and wheel widths as wide as 10-inch.
Suspension modifications for the new M-Class were designed in collaboration with Bilstein and for M-Classes with standard suspension, components are available that will lower the M-Class as much as 1.2-inch. The M-Classes with airmatic suspension gets a control module that will lower the M-Class 1.2- to 1.6-inch. Braking performance is also enhanced with six-piston calipers in the front and four-piston calipers in the rear – all of which is outfitted with larger, cross-drilled rotors.
Brabus only announced an engine enhancement for the ML 350 BlueTEC 4Matic, upgrading power from 258-hp to 306-hp and torque from 457 lb-ft to 509 lb-ft. Brabus plans to have an engine upgrade for all models of the new M-Class.
Lastly, interior accessories include stainless steel scuff plates with a backlit Brabus logo, matte-anodized aluminum pedals, door-lock pins and foot rest. Seats can be reupholstered with Mastik leather and Alcantara.
No pricing was announced.
GALLERY: Brabus Mercedes-Benz M-Class
The Evoque was up against some stiff competition this year. Other contenders up for the award included BMW X3, Dodge Durango, Dodge Journey, Ford Explorer, Jeep Wrangler, Mercedes-Benz M-Class, MINI Countryman, Saab 9-4x and Volkswagen Touareg.
According to Motor Trend, the Land Rover Range Rover Evoque passed each of its six criteria for the distinction (Advancement In Design, Engineering Excellence, Efficiency, Safety, Value and Performance Of Intended Function) with flying colors.
Based on the Land Rover LR2, the Evoque is an evolutionary leap over its predecessor, says Motor Trend. Even though it shares a platform with the LR2, the Evoque performs considerably better in every way. “The Evoque is meant to appeal to the buyer who ranks style, content, and fuel efficiency above approach and departure angles,” says Motor Trend.
Just a few of Evoque’s perks that wowed the judges included its Terrain Response handling and AWD system, its stylish design, roomy cargo area, emission reduction, improved fuel economy and impressive value (it has a price tag of $43,995 – not too shabby when you see all the great features it comes with).
Discuss this story at RREvoqueForum.com
Kanye West is a prolific consumer of Mercedes-Benz vehicles, having been spotted in everything from Maybachs to SLR Stirling Moss Editions and all points in between.
While West is now famous for taking a blowtorch and an angle grinder to a Maybach in the video for his new single “Otis” (in collaboration with fellow aficionado Jay-Z), videos of West buying his first G550 SUV recently surfaced via hip-hop music video production house Creative Control.
The clip appears to date back to 2002 when West, having just rapped on Jay-Z’s landmark album “The Blueprint 2″, went out and purchased the G-Wagen to replace his ML430. The video is interlaced with samples from “Otis”, suggesting that the footage has been kicking around for some time. Kanye even bragged about his G500 being his “favorite toy” on a mixtape released in 2003 – but the clip is still a cool retrospective at Kanye just as he was on the cusp of fame. Furthermore, the salesman even suggests that Kanye check out “the next car we’re getting – the Maybach”.
The third generation of Mercedes-Benz’s wildly popular M-class has been unveiled, and it sports a wider, cleaner new grille and a new V6 diesel engine.
The ML350 BlueTEC gets a newly massaged 3-liter V6 diesel engine that’s 50-state compliant and features 55-lb/ft more torque than the last engine, bringing that figure up to 455. It also has 240 horsepower, an increase of 30hp over the previous engine. As far as mileage goes, the increase is far more subtle: 20/25 instead of 18/25 city/highway mpg, but the torque is a far more entertaining trade-off.
The other engine is a 3.5-liter V6 engine with direct injection, which features 302 horsepower and 2743 lb/ft of torque. Both of these are available with a seven-speed automatic transmission with a new oil thermal management system. Underneath, the M-Class features what Mercedes calls AGILITY CONTROL, but what normal people call active damping: the shocks can firm up based on current driving conditions, enhancing stability.
Pricing hasn’t been announced yet, but it shouldn’t be too far off the mark of the current M-Class’s starting MSRP of $47,365.
Gallery: 2012 Mercedes-Benz M-Class