The first ever M-Class was presented in 1997 and had the internal code W 163. The M-Class was the first SUV by Mercedes-Benz. SUV typical the M-Class has a higher towed load, allowing it to pull heavy vehicles, such as horse riding trailers.
The M-Class is the first Mercedes-Benz that is manufactured in Vance, Tuscaloosa (Alabama), United States. The name “M” was already reserved for BMW’s high performance cars. As a result an agreement among the two was found and the car was called M-Class from then on, the vehicles are sold under the shortcut “ML”, e.g. ML 320.
The first generation was succeeded by the W 164 in 2005. The newest generation, that is the W166, was presented on the German market on November 19th 2011, the first public presentation was already on June 7th 2011. From 1997 until August of 2011 a total number of 1170000 vehicles were sold.