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Mercedes Benz Recalls 16,184 Defective Vehicles

  Norman Taylor & Associates
  May 14, 2009

No one wants to look through their mail and be greeted by a recall notice, especially after purchasing a new car. When buying a Mercedes-Benz one expects Mercedes quality- nothing but the best. In a recent March report, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recalled 16,130 M-Class vehicles and 54 S-Class vehicles for mandatory repairs. Defective vehicles have become commonplace and consumers need to know how the California lemon law protects them.

Vehicle recalls are issued after the Office of Defects Investigation (ODI) of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration conducts a thorough investigation of complaints. If they find the defect(s) are numerous within a particular vehicle year, make, or model, a recall notice will issue. ODI then administers the safety recall to uphold their mission to improve safety on roads and highways for all consumers. NHTSA is given the exclusive task to command manufacturers to recall and repair defective vehicles or components that pose deadly hazards to drivers and passengers. These defects may arise from the design, construction or performance of the vehicle.

NHTSA’s recall campaign 09V076000 for the 2009 M-Class states that vehicles equipped with the optional power lift gate may be subject to a fire. There is a faulty seal around the rear tail lamp assembly where water may ingress and contaminate the control unit. This can cause a short circuit and lead to a fire.

Mercedes-Benz dealers will replace the seal of the rear tail lamp assembly with one that will not allow the water to ingress, in addition to repositioning the control unit to prevent any water from direct access to the control unit. Recalls began in April 2009 and dealers will make these repairs at no expense to consumers.

The S-Class has another serious recall concerning the safe exit of a vehicle in the event of an accident and also where children may unintentionally open of the rear door. During production, the front and rear passenger side door locks may have been mistakenly interchanged during the manufacturing process. The misplacement of the front and rear passenger side door lock would result in a passenger side door that will not open by pulling on the interior handle and a rear door lock that will not be opened by pulling the interior door handle even if unlocked.

A consumer may have already repeatedly returned their vehicle for repairs on the very defect giving rise to the recall. If they have already given the manufacturer through its repair facilities (dealers) a reasonable opportunity to repair the defect, they may be entitled to a buy back or replacement vehicle.

If you don’t already qualify for a lemon law buyback, an owner of a recalled vehicle should make sure all recall campaigns are completed immediately. Dealers must complete these repairs at no charge to the consumer.

Mercedes-Benz has always boasted that its quality craftsmanship make it the premier manufacturer of luxury vehicles. But recalls happen, even to those who boast to be the best. Even Mercedes-Benz is not immune to manufacturing defective vehicles. California lemon law can help consumers with defective vehicles, even those which manufacturers claim to be free from defects.

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