With out a doubt.....
Get the ML. You get it for safety, ease of handling, comfort, and all around great SUV. Most other SUV's and cars don't even offer the safety systems that are standard on this vehicle. I get 15-16 mpg around town and 23-25 on long trips. My wife would rather drive the ML, than our car. In the four years that I've had my 2000 320 ML, it has never let me down. I've had some things fixed under warranty mainly because of what I've read on this forum. As stated, the harmonic balancer may have to be replaced, but that should be about it. Don't get it if you carry more than 4-5 people (forget the 3od seat!) or if you tow heavy trailers. A longer wheel base would be better for towing. It is rated for 5000#, though. Also, the 2000+ models have had fewer problems and major updates in content. Is it perfect? No. Is it one of the safest vehicles on the road? Probably.
Paul 1987 300 SDL; 2000 ML; '69 MGB; '68 VW Fastback