The recall follows a preliminary investigation the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration started in December, 2010. The root of the problem is reportedly a failed brake lamp switch, which can cause not only the cruise control issue, but also prevent the vehicle being shifted out of park and a failure of the brake lights.
Though the investigation by NHTSA is only a few months old, Daimler AG issued a technical service bulletin in May, 2005 to replace the faulty brake lamp switch. According to Daimler, the problem can be solved by pumping the brakes to disengage cruise, but the automaker admits that it may require an "unusually high" amount of pressure on the pedal.
Mercedes dealers will replace the switch for affected customers when the recall begins in September.
[Source: The Detroit News]
MERCEDES BENZ / M CLASS
MERCEDES-BENZ USA, LLC.
Mfr's Report Date:
MAR 31, 2011
NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number:
NHTSA Action Number:
VEHICLE SPEED CONTROL:CRUISE CONTROL
Potential Number of Units Affected:
MERCEDES-BENZ IS RECALLING CERTAIN MODEL YEAR 2000-2002 M-CLASS AND MODEL YEAR 2000-2004 M-CLASS AMG VEHICLES. THE CRUISE CONTROL SYSTEM IN THE AFFECTED VEHICLES ALLOWS THE DRIVER TO DISENGAGE THE SYSTEM IN A NUMBER OF WAYS, INCLUDING TAPPING THE BRAKE PEDAL, USING THE CRUISE CONTROL STALK, OR BRAKING THE VEHICLE ENOUGH TO REACH A CERTAIN RATE OF DECELERATION. MERCEDES-BENZ HAS DETERMINED THAT UNDER CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES USE OF THE BRAKE PEDAL MAY NOT AUTOMATICALLY DISENGAGE CRUISE CONTROL AS EXPECTED BY THE DRIVER, ALTHOUGH THE OTHER MEANS OF DEACTIVATING CRUISE CONTROL REMAIN FULLY OPERATIVE. SPECIFICALLY, WHERE THE DRIVER PUMPS THE BRAKES RATHER THAN APPLYING CONSISTENT PEDAL FORCE, THE LEVEL OF FORCE REQUIRED MAY BE UNUSUALLY HIGH.
DIFFICULTY OR DELAY IN DISENGAGING CRUISE CONTROL CAN INCREASE THE RISK OF A CRASH.
DEALERS WILL REPAIR THE VEHICLES FREE OF CHARGE. THE SAFETY RECALL IS EXPECTED TO BEGIN DURING SEPTEMBER 2011. OWNERS MAY CONTACT MERCEDES-BENZ AT 1-800-367-6372.
OWNERS MAY ALSO CONTACT THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY TRAFFIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION'S VEHICLE SAFETY HOTLINE AT 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), OR GO TO HTTP://WWW.SAFERCAR.GOV .