Mercedes-Benz M class | Model Year Difference & Performance for Off-Road Trip

In 1997, Mercedes-Benz introduced the mid-size luxury SUV called the M-Class, later renamed the GLE-Class in April 2015. This German crossover offers front/rear-wheel-drive or 4WD, positioned between the GLC-Class and GLS-Class. The M-Class had 4 generations: W163 (1997-2005), W164 (2005-2011), W166 (2012-2019), and W167 (2020-present). This article reviews the 1998, 2010, 2011, and 2014 models’ features, specs, and performance.

Mercedes Benz GLE Class (2023)

2023 MERCEDES-BENZ GLE-CLASS white frontside
2023 MERCEDES-BENZ GLE-CLASS white backside

The Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class, the successor to the iconic M-Class, represents a significant evolution in luxury SUVs. Building upon the M-Class legacy, the GLE-Class combines cutting-edge technology, sophisticated design, and enhanced performance.

With its roots dating back to the M-Class, the GLE-Class was introduced in 2015, maintaining the DNA of its predecessor while embracing modern advancements. The GLE’s concept revolves around offering a versatile driving experience and luxurious, perfectly balancing performance and comfort.


Notable improvements over the M-Class include integrating the signature Mercedes-Benz styling cues with aerodynamic enhancements and a sleeker exterior design. The GLE features state-of-the-art technology, including connectivity options that redefine the in-car experience, advanced driver-assistance systems, and a user-friendly infotainment system


Under the hood, the GLE offers an efficient choice and range of powerful engines, including hybrid and performance-oriented options, catering to different preferences. The introduction of the GLE Coupe model adds a sportier dimension to the lineup.

In essence, the Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class elevates the legacy of the M-Class by refining its design, technology, and performance, to meet the demands of the modern luxury SUV market, offering innovation for discerning drivers and a seamless blend of opulence.

Safety Systems

The Mercedes-Benz M-Class is renowned for its unwavering commitment to safety, setting a benchmark for secure driving. Pioneering a comprehensive array of cutting-edge safety features, the M-Class ensures both active and passive protection for passengers.

Active safety technologies include advanced driver-assistance systems like adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, and blind-spot monitoring. These systems work in tandem to prevent accidents, maintain safe distances, and alert drivers to potential hazards.
Moreover, the M-Class employs an array of passive safety measures, such as multiple airbags strategically positioned throughout the cabin, including front, side, and curtain airbags. The reinforced structure, incorporating high-strength materials, contributes to effective energy absorption during collisions.
In the event of an accident, the M-Class incorporates features like Electronic Stability Control (ESC), Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), and Brake Assist, enhancing control and reducing stopping distances.


Mercedes-Benz’s commitment to safety extends beyond vehicle design; they continually innovate and integrate emerging technologies to enhance occupant protection. The brand’s dedication to safety research and development has earned the M-Class top scores in crash tests, highlighting its commitment to providing a secure driving environment.

2014 Mercedes Benz M -Class



The 2014 Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class has borrowed a few cues from its ancestor the M-Class which was a hit when it came out. the stylish C-pillar behind the tailgate and the wrap-around back window glass an obvious design cues so is the big Mercedes emblem attached to the grille.
In appearance and packages the grille differs with LED headlights and stylish daytime LED running lights while the back features a small 3-star emblem, narrow tail lights that extend to the tailgate, and dual exhaust pipes.


The interior of the Mercedes-Benz M- Class later renamed as GLE looks and feels out of this world, with great Nappa leathers and natural grain wood trim. In the driver’s cabin, there is a perfect seating position, the steering wheel, the seat, and the pedals will automatically adjust after the driver enters his/her height after the 12.3 center touchscreen prompt

The M-Class 2014 model has much comfortability including massaging seats, ventilated front seats, a heated door panel, a heated center console, memorized front seat adjustments, cooled cup holders, heated and cooled front, and rear seats, heated, power second-row side window shades and 4-zone automatic climate control.

Fuel efficiency

On average, the 2014 M-Class achieves around 7.2-8.5 km per hour (Km/h) in the city and 9.3-11.9 Km/h on the highway.



The Mercedes Benz M-Class also known as GLE starting in 2014 model came with different engine sizes and was available in both petrol and diesel such as Petrol: 2.0L M264 turbocharged I4, 2.0L M274 PHEV turbocharged I4, 2.5L M256 mild hybrid turbo I6 (China), 3.0L M256 mild hybrid Turbo I6, 4.0L M176 bi-turbo V8, 4.0L M177 mild hybrid bi-turbo V8 and Diesel 2.0L OM654 turbodiesel I4, 2.0L OM654 PHEV turbodiesel I4, and 2.9L OM656 turbodiesel I6. Both these engines are mated to a 9-speed 9G-Tronic automatic and to a Plug-in hybrid (GLE 350e and GLE 350de).


The price of Mercedes Benz M-Class 2014 can vary due to some factors such as condition (New or used), Mileage, and region but the price of M-Class 2014 on BE FORWARD website starts from US 14,967. This is a very good SUV with more advanced safety features to have but if you are capable of just buying this model with many options to enjoy while driving. The 2014 M-Class has many prons but in few are modern design, advanced tech options, and improved fuel efficiency while cons are potentially higher purchase price, complex infotainment system, and varying reliability.

2011 Mercedes Benz M -Class


Some of the M-Class comes with an adaptive damping system and air suspension high-performance tires, 20-inch AMG wheels, AMG styling elements, upgraded brakes, front and rear parking sensors, and a sport steering wheel with shift paddles.


In the cabin, you will find top-notch materials and a pleasing design and noted as one of the finest cabins in its class. Both the drive and passenger legroom and headroom are more impressive than most of its rivals. There is a total of 29 cubic feet of luggage space when the back seats are in place. This expands to 72 cubes when the seats are folded flat this is an average figure for this class of vehicle.

Fuel Efficiency

Fuel consumption for any car depends on various factors such as model, driving habit, engine size, fuel type, and transmission, but the 2011 M-Class offers fuel consumption from 8.5 km/l to 10.4km/l.


The 2011 M-Class comes with both diesel, petrol, and hybrid engine such as 3.5L M272 E35 V6 (petrol & hybrid), 5.0L M113 E50 V8, 4.6L M273 E47 V8, 5.5L M273 E55 V8, 6.2L M156 V8 petrol engine and 3.0L OM642 V6 turbo, 4.0L OM629 V8 turbo (2005–2011) diesel engine. The hybrid engine is attached to a 2x AC synchronous electric motor with 62 kW for the 1st motor and 60 kW for the 2nd motor. All these engines a mated to 7-speed automatic (7G-Tronic) and two-mode hybrid CVT.


Prices differ due to many factors like condition, mileage, region, and models, But the 2011 M-Class model starts from US 7,420 as stated on BE FORWARD website.
2011 M-Class pros are updated styling, strong safety features, and comfortable ride while cons are Limited cargo space, some dated technology, and higher ownership costs.
If your financial capability is not well to have the latest model of M-Class better go for this model with luxury and off-road capability.

2010 Mercedes Benz M -Class

2010 MERCEDES-BENZ ML CLASS white front side
2010 MERCEDES-BENZ ML CLASS backside white


The 2010 Mercedes-Benz M-Class featured a rugged and stylish exterior design typical of luxury SUVs of its time. The M-Class had a well-proportioned and muscular SUV body design, showcasing its off-road capability while maintaining an elegant and sophisticated look. A prominent grille with the iconic Mercedes-Benz emblem was positioned at the center of the front fascia, giving the vehicle a recognizable brand identity while the headlights often featured a sleek and modern design, equipped with high-intensity discharge (HID) or optional LED lighting for improved visibility etc.


2010 MERCEDES-BENZ ML CLASS interior driving sheet
2010 MERCEDES-BENZ ML CLASS front backsheet

The interior of the 2010 Mercedes-Benz M-Class is powered by a blend of luxury, advanced technology, and comfort. Some of the notable interior features include: The interior was crafted with high-quality materials, including wood or aluminum trim, soft-touch surfaces, and premium leather upholstery. The M-Class typically offered spacious seating for 5 passengers, with the option for a 3rd-row seat in some models. Front seats were often power-adjustable, heated, and ventilated. In the cabin you will find the infotainment included features like navigation, Bluetooth connectivity, and audio streaming, High-end sound systems, often from brands like Harman Kardon or Bang & Olufsen, were available, providing excellent audio quality, Multi-Zone Climate Control, Steering Wheel and Controls, Instrument Cluster, and Interior Lighting.

Fuel Efficiency

The M-Class achieves 6.8km/l to 8.9km/l city/highway with 2-wheel drive and 6.3km/l to 8.5km/l with all-wheel drive. The M-Class powered by a V8 engine, however, is rated at 5.5 km/l to 7.6km/l, which is quite low for the class this is according to the EPA.


The 2010 Mercedes Benz M-Class has no major differences in engines, they came up with both petrol, hybrid, and diesel such as Petrol: 3.5L M272 E35 V6 (petrol & hybrid), 5.0L M113 E50 V8, 4.6L M273 E47 V8, 5.5L M273 E55 V8, and 6.2L M156 V8 while Diesel: 3.0L OM642 V6 turbo and 4.0L OM629 V8 turbo (2005–2011). The hybrid version is attached to a 2x AC synchronous electric motor (ML450 Hybrid) 83 hp for 1st motor and 80 hp for the 2nd motor. Normal engines are mated to a 7-speed automatic (7G-Tronic) while hybrid mated to a two-mode hybrid CVT.


Prices differ due to many factors like condition, mileage, region, and models, But the 2010 M-Class model starts from US 7,029 as stated on BE FORWARD website.
2010 M-Class Pros are improved reliability, refined interior, and advanced safety features while cons – Aging design, average fuel economy, and limited third-row space.

Final Verdict

In sum, the Mercedes-Benz M-Class exemplifies safety through a blend of advanced technologies and meticulous engineering, ensuring the utmost protection for both drivers and passengers and setting a precedent for excellence in the realm of automotive safety.

If you are looking for a luxurious off-road partner then the Mercedes-Benz M-Class is the ultimate option for you. It is equipped with a standard 4MATIC all-wheel drive and an Off-road driving mode to enhance the driving stability in poor road conditions, a standard Downhill Speed Regulation DSR, an ON & OFF-ROAD package that equips the driver with more control while handling the car by switching into modes that adapt to the current driving condition, a standard Direct-Steer system which smoothens the steering effort in large steering angles, an ACTIVE CURVE SYSTEM, a standard steel suspension with selective damping system which flexibly enhances the comfort of the vehicle as well as reduces noise and vibration of the vehicle with comparison to previous models.




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