Durability of standard ML (W163) alloy wheels?

6 replies [Last post]
mercfan
mercfan's picture
Offline
Joined: 31.07.2004
Location: Hertfordshire
GWOA Groups: Members

As there are evidently quite a few past and present ML owners on here, I thought I'd ask, as this is my favourite forum and bunch of people smiley

Situation is this:

I have a ML430 here which, between everything else, I need to prepare in order to be able to handle rutted and potholed gravel roads at speeds of minimum 60mph.

In regards wheels and tyres, first thoughts were to with spacer/adapters, change to G-wagen steel wheels and 235/85-16 or 265/75-16 tyres. The problem with this is that the spacers would need to be roughly 75mm thick and in steel (to handle steel wheel bolt torque and for strength and durability) and that seemingly no-one is willing to produce such items.

The 75mm is approximate at this stage and is needed for the 16 inch G-wagen wheels to clear the big brakes (same as 500/55) of the 430.

Once upon a time, more than 20 years ago to be precise, I used to be a fitter and turner. So I COULD go and source a lathe and mill and just make them myself.

But then also thought/wondered if the standard ML alloy wheels may be able to stand up to punishment if I went to for example a 265/65-17?

The real question here is this: Of all you past and present ML owners, did you ever suffer a broken/cracked/bent/buckled (genuine MB) 17-inch alloy wheel? Or are they super tough?

Would really appreciate any input and/or thoughts or suggestions.

IanA2
IanA2's picture
Offline
Joined: 14.10.2009
Location: East Mids
GWOA Groups: Members
Re: Durability of standard ML (W163) alloy wheels?

I've had two, both 163's no problems with the wheels but then they never went off road (well not often). I might even have a spare wheel lying about.

 

 
 
                                                         Seriously looking at an FX70
Spider1V
Spider1V's picture
Offline
Joined: 21.10.2007
Location: Beaconsfield, Bucks
GWOA Groups: Members
Re: Durability of standard ML (W163) alloy wheels?

I had three - 2 x ML55's and a CDI 2.9.

The ML 55 was on 18" and did not stand up well to pot holed roads at speed had to replace them on each (both front ones - back seemed to be ok). However the CDI version with steel wheels faired better.

HTH

Spider1V

mercfan
mercfan's picture
Offline
Joined: 31.07.2004
Location: Hertfordshire
GWOA Groups: Members
Re: Durability of standard ML (W163) alloy wheels?

Thank you gents - that definitely helps

Spider, you mention steel wheels???

Have you by any chance got a pic or 2?

Been told everywhere "doesn't exist".

gav.helme
gav.helme's picture
Offline
Joined: 29.04.2011
Location: North Lincolnshire
GWOA Groups: Committee, Members
Re: Durability of standard ML (W163) alloy wheels?

mercfan wrote:

Thank you gents - that definitely helps

Spider, you mention steel wheels???

Have you by any chance got a pic or 2?

Been told everywhere "doesn't exist".

I'm with you Mercfan, never seen an ML with Steel Wheels?!? 163 .... 164   or   166

EPC sure don't list them? Well only the narrow space saver spares...

Can't find an ML290CDI Either though, perhaps it's one of Spider's mythical beasts....

Maybe it was a Djibouti special edition he imported, if you meet him at some dodgy port he will sell you it cheeky

IanA2
IanA2's picture
Offline
Joined: 14.10.2009
Location: East Mids
GWOA Groups: Members
Re: Durability of standard ML (W163) alloy wheels?

gav.helme wrote:

mercfan wrote:

Thank you gents - that definitely helps

Spider, you mention steel wheels???

Have you by any chance got a pic or 2?

Been told everywhere "doesn't exist".

I'm with you Mercfan, never seen an ML with Steel Wheels?!? 163 .... 164   or   166

EPC sure don't list them? Well only the narrow space saver spares...

Can't find an ML290CDI Either though, perhaps it's one of Spider's mythical beasts....

Maybe it was a Djibouti special edition he imported, if you meet him at some dodgy port he will sell you it cheeky

 

That'll be the one with the steel wheels smiley

mercfan
mercfan's picture
Offline
Joined: 31.07.2004
Location: Hertfordshire
GWOA Groups: Members
Re: Durability of standard ML (W163) alloy wheels?

That'll be the one with the steel wheels

Don't knock it yet - not quite given up on the idea...

Mock up lined up with hub: