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Mercedes Tweaks SUV Range

At a time when most SUV purveyors are considering downsizing displacement of their V8 engines to improve fuel economy, Mercedes-Benz is putting bigger engines under the hoods of its ML- and GL-Class SUVs.

At a time when most SUV purveyors are considering downsizing displacement of their V8 engines to improve fuel economy, Mercedes-Benz is putting bigger engines under the hoods of its ML- and GL-Class SUVs. The mid-size ML says farewell to the venerable 5.0-liter V8 engine and replaces it with the new 5.5-liter V8 that debuted on the S-Class sedan, resulting in an 80 hp improvement (382 hp @ 6,000 rpm) and a 52 lb.-ft. increase in torque (391 lb.-ft. @ 2,800-4,800 rpm). MB’s full-size GL SUV, meanwhile, adds the 5.5-liter engine to its range with the same perform-ance credentials. Those who question the three-pointed star brand’s move into bigger engines at a time when fuel economy is a growing concern need not fret—overall fuel economy numbers for the ML550 remain the same as the outgoing ML500 (14 mpg city/19 mpg highway).—KMK