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October 24, 2007

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Current M-Class Delivered to 250,000 Customers Worldwide

Stuttgart - Since the market launch of the second generation M-Class in April 2005, Mercedes-Benz has delivered 250,000 models of the SUV to customers around the world. Featuring the most advanced technology - such as the 7G-TRONIC seven-speed automatic transmission, all-wheel drive, AIRMATIC air suspension, and the PRE-SAFE® anticipatory occupant protection system - this trendsetter among today's offroaders continues to be a great success in this growing market segment.

In September 2007 sales of the M-Class once again reached new record levels, contributing significantly to the record-breaking sales that Mercedes-Benz posted in the SUV segment. Since the beginning of this year, 131,300 M-, R-, GL-, and G-Class vehicles were delivered to Mercedes-Benz customers, an 11-percent increase compared to the same period last year.

The M-Class is particularly popular among customers in the United States and Germany, with sales in the U.S. accounting for about one third of total M-Class sales. The German market accounts for one fifth of M-Class sales. About 60 percent of M-Class customers worldwide choose one of the three diesel engines offered.

The ML 320 CDI diesel model introduced in the U.S. in late 2006 is also proving to be very popular with American customers: By the end of September, the diesel-powered version accounted for 20 percent of all M-Class models sold in the 45 U.S. states where the vehicle is available with the diesel engine. Worldwide, the ML 320 CDI is the top seller among the M-Class engine versions, representing about 40 percent of M-Class sales.

Beginning next year, three clean and economical Mercedes-Benz SUVs with BLUETEC technology - the M-Class, GL-Class, and R-Class - will be available to American customers in all 50 states. These vehicles comply with the stringent BIN 5 standard and also have the potential to meet future EU5 and EU6 limits.

In June of this year, the J.D. Power study “Automotive Performance, Execution and Layout” (APEAL) confirmed the customers’ very positive response to the M-Class: Two vehicles from the Mercedes-Benz line-up of SUVs, the M-Class and the GL-Class, which received a Gold award, came out top in the customer survey. As part of the annual study, the U.S. market researchers ask owners of new vehicles how satisfied they are with their vehicles’ concepts.

To coincide with the 10-year anniversary of the M-Class - its first generation made its market premiere in 1997 - the special “Edition 10” model has been available since mid-September of this year. Distinguished by “Edition 10” logos on the fenders, the anniversary model’s features include 20-inch wheels, bi-xenon-headlights, dark-tinted tail lights, and special “titanium look” body colors. Like the R-Class and GL-Class models, the M-Class is produced in the U.S., at Mercedes-Benz’ Tuscaloosa, Alabama plant.

Photos: Daimler

(Oct. 22, 2007)

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