"R350 Comfortable, AWD, Outstanding Build Quality"4.5 starson by jkoeh
Pros: Interior is built to last for the entire life of the car.
All wheel drive is an expensive option on the minivans, 4 matic (a superior system) is standard here.
5000 pounds moves from 0-60mph in 8 seconds.
Makes you look forward to driving.
Cons: Less interior volume than a minivan.
Scheduled maintenance is more expensive than domestic vehicles.
The light colored dash top produces some reflection in the windshield under certain lighting conditions.
Rear visibility could be better.
Summary: This vehicle is just a pleasure to drive or ride in. It is good looking, comfortable and sure footed. I would be surprised if you could not get comfortable in the seats with the scope of steering wheel and seat adjust-ability. HVAC is quiet and well engineered. The Bi-Xenon headlamps are a must have (in any car really) as they provide incredibly good night visibility. A roof rack is a dealer installable option and there are both oem and aftermarket hitches available. Tow capacity is around 3700 pounds. The back seats fold down to make a flat sizable cargo area, and the power liftgate is a very nice optiion, great when approaching with arms full.
of shoping bags. I lke the pano roof, but I could have easily done without this $2500 option. The GPS works very well. The data entry interface is a little clunky, but once you are programmed, routing, warning for turns and exits and general guidance is excellent. I have owned at least 6 different stand alone GPS units, and I can now say that having the GPS integrated into the car is very nice. The radio volume goes down for voice instructions, and even without the GPS signal in tunnels and amongst tall buildings, the car knows where it is because of the tie in to the drive train. There are enough features to keep any techno freak happy for years, but they are so well executed, if you don't know or don't care about them, you will still be able to operate the car comfortably and safely. The first time it drizzled out, my wife called me in excitement about the way the windshield wipers automatically came on then stopped when the windshield was dry. We have owned BMW and Audi vehicles, but I must say that though I thought I would never diverge from Audi, this is probably the most well executed vehicle I have ever owned. Truly under rated and a bit of a sleeper in the Mercedes line up. And oh, if it matters, you will be driving a bit of a rarity, according to wiki, only 45,000 of these vehicles had been sold in the US through Decmeber 2008.
In summary, after owning 4 Chrysler branded Grand Voyagers and Grand Caravans, we just got tired of the A/C failing in every car after about 4 years and all the brake changes and and falling apart/wearing out interior and body rust. If you love having the convenience of a minivan, you can afford to give up about 50 cubic feet of cargo space and you want an actual quality vehicle, look at the R-Class. You will regret not making the change over earlier. (Oh- and we are getting over 23mpg at 75mph on the freeway)