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At $8,200, Is This 2007 Mercedes ML 320 4-Matic CDI A Crossover That Could Make You Cross Over?

Illustration for article titled At $8,200, Is This 2007 Mercedes ML 320 4-Matic CDI A Crossover That Could Make You Cross Over?
Photo: Craigslist
Nice Price Or No DiceIs this used car a good deal? You decide!

Mercedes Benz may be one of Germany’s preeminent automotive brands, but today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe ML was actually built in Tuscaloosa Alabama. Let’s see of this diesel-powered wagon’s price reflects any of the South’s famous southern comfort.

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There’s was a meme going around a few years back that for a short time popularized the slogan “condoms prevent minivans.” Yeah, I know, ha, ha, ha.

The minivan category has long been looked down upon—unfairly, I might add—for its family hauler status. At the same time, however, classic small vans like the Volkswagen Type 2 are widely coveted by their fans.

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Yesterday’s 1963 Chevy Corvair Greenbriar was also a covetable minivan, similar in concept to the early VW’s it originally sought to capture buyers away from. At $6,900, that effort was seemingly still working, as the little Chevy pulled in a solid 63 percent Nice Price win for its trouble.

Despite the well-earned popularity of yesterday’s Greenbriar, the whole category of vans as consumer conveyances has diminished over the years.

Illustration for article titled At $8,200, Is This 2007 Mercedes ML 320 4-Matic CDI A Crossover That Could Make You Cross Over?

These days you’re more likely to find some sort of SUV or “soft-roader” in driveways rather than vans. Those run the gamut from cars like the tiny Honda HR-V all the way up to to the enormous Chevy Suburban.

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Somewhere in the middle of those two extremes lies this 2007 Mercedes Benz ML 320 4-Matic CDI. And, while it’s not the mud-slogging pheasant hunter’s mount that, say a Range Rover might be, it’s still a pretty cushy ride that can handle anything the road might want to throw at it.

Illustration for article titled At $8,200, Is This 2007 Mercedes ML 320 4-Matic CDI A Crossover That Could Make You Cross Over?
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The ML was Mercedes’ first attempt at a consumer-grade sport utility for the U.S. market and was also the first product to roll off the assembly line at the company’s then-new plant in Tuscaloosa County, Alabama in 1997. That first ML was a body-on-frame design and that led to a somewhat comically disproportionate short but tall appearance.

This second-generation edition debuted in 2005 with a switch to unibody design. That model shared much of its structure with the longer wheelbase GL-class wagons. Quite remarkably, we’ve seen two more generations of ML (now branded the GLE) since then.

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Illustration for article titled At $8,200, Is This 2007 Mercedes ML 320 4-Matic CDI A Crossover That Could Make You Cross Over?

This one looks especially nice, although its white paint and overall design do make it seem less upscale and, dare I say it, look like the contemporary Kia Sorrento. Being somewhat anonymous isn’t necessarily a bad thing, however. More importantly, all that anonymous bodywork appears to be in excellent shape, as do the factory alloys and Pirelli Scorpion tires.

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Illustration for article titled At $8,200, Is This 2007 Mercedes ML 320 4-Matic CDI A Crossover That Could Make You Cross Over?

The interior looks just as lovely and rocks leather seating surfaces and lots of wood trim. Oddly enough, the wood tacked on the center console does not seem to match that applied to the door cards. That may be just a trick of the light in the photos but it does look a little odd.

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Everything looks to be in fine shape here otherwise. The only possible complaints one might raise are over an overly shiny steering wheel and an aftermarket head unit in the dash. There’s not much you can do about the first issue, but the stereo should be an easy swap if you don’t want that aftermarket look.

Illustration for article titled At $8,200, Is This 2007 Mercedes ML 320 4-Matic CDI A Crossover That Could Make You Cross Over?
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There are a mere 124,000 miles on the truck and the seller claims that the 3-litre diesel engine/seven-speed 7G-Tronic transmission package is one of Mercedes’ most desirable. The 215 horsepower/398 ft-lbs of torque V6 predates the Bluetec emissions system add-on so you needn’t add urea to your weekly fluid level checkups.

The title is clean and with a claimed professional-level detailing, so too should be the car. The seller claims a KBB value of $8,700 and has set the truck’s price enticingly below that at $8,200.

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Illustration for article titled At $8,200, Is This 2007 Mercedes ML 320 4-Matic CDI A Crossover That Could Make You Cross Over?

Here’s the thing—there are a ton of other options in this category and class. The diesel engine does make it a bit of an outlier since those are fairly rare in the U.S. market. Still, would you take this over a BMW X5 of similar age and kit? How about an Infiniti Q… whatever they built back then?

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Decisions, decisions. That’s what plagues sellers of vehicles in a crowded category such as that of this Mercedes. Let’s see if we can help. Do you think $8,200 is a fair price for this ML? Or, despite its being detailed, is that price a detail that you might want to overlook?

You decide!

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Sacramento, CA Craigslist, or go here if the ad disappears.

H/T to Sean M. for the hookup!

Help me out with NPOCP. Hit me up at rob@jalopnik.com and send me a fixed-price tip. Remember to include your Kinja handle.

Rob Emslie is a contributing writer for Jalopnik. He has too many cars, and not enough time to work on them all.

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DISCUSSION

halftrackelcamino
Half-track El Camino

The only possible complaints one might raise are over an overly shiny steering wheel and an aftermarket head unit in the dash. There’s not much you can do about the first issue, but the stereo should be an easy swap if you don’t want that aftermarket look.

Why is it that there are literally zero options available if you want a better head unit but don’t want it to look like it was designed by a 14-year-old from 1993? Every aftermarket model in existence seems to strive to be tackier and gaudier than the last.

Has nobody ever considered the possibility that someone might want an upgraded stereo that complements (or at least doesn’t violently clash with) the rest of the interior? One that is understated and familiar to use, but with quality internals?

It’s a weird little design bubble that aftermarket head units exist in, that’s for sure. Every once in a while I check in to see if things have evolved at all (my car is old and I would love to have an aux port or bluetooth in the stereo—I’ve probably spent enough on janky adapters that always break to have bought a new head unit by now) but the industry stubbornly refuses to make anything that I would not be ashamed to have in my car.

Money is surely being left on the table here. My money certainly is, anyway. What exactly is the deal there?

Anyway, CP because I can think of literally thousands of other vehicles I would rather have for the price.