App note from Vishay on why MELF resistors are so successful and has no alternative in today’s application. Link here (PDF)
For more than 25 years, Vishay’s MELF resistors have successfully met the demanding requirements of the automotive industry. They offer superior SMD resistor performance in terms of accuracy, stability, reliability, and pulse load capability. The cylindrical construction of MELF devices provides an optimal power rating and pulse load capability related to the mounting space. Continuous development has led to improved long-term stability and moisture resistance, and allows high-temperature operation to + 175 °C.