Sandy Springs, Ga. – Feb. 28, 2019 – Mercedes-Benz USA, LLC (MBUSA) is recalling certain Coupe, Cabrio, 4Matic and RWD vehicles that were sold or every registered in “Zone A”, “Zone B” or “Zone C”. A total of 288,779 units may be affected:
• 2010-2011 C300 vehicles
• 2010-2014 C300 4Matic, C350, C63 AMG and E350 Coupe vehicles
• 2010-2015 GLK350 4Matic and GLK350 RWD vehicles
• 2011-2014 C300 4Matic, C350, C63 AMG, E350 Cabrio, E350 Coupe, SLS AMG Coupe, and SLS AMG Cabrio vehicles
• 2011-2017 E550 Cabrio and E550 Coupe vehicles
• 2012-2014 C250, E350 4Matic Coupe and SLS AMG Cabrio vehicles
• 2012-2015 C250 Coupe, C350 4Matic Coupe, C350 Coupe and C63 AMG Coupe vehicles
• 2013-2015 GLK250 BlueTec 4Matic vehicles
• 2014-2015 C250 Coupe, C350 4Matic Coupe, C350 Coupe, C63 AMG Coupe and GLK 350 vehicles
• 2015-2017 E400 4Matic Coupe, E400 Cabrio and E400 Coupe vehicles
According to the NHTSA Safety Report filed on January 9th, non-desiccated ammonium nitrate was used in the air bag inflators in the passenger side air bags of these vehicles. The inflator, if deployed in a degraded state, can explode, with its debris potentially striking any occupants and leading to injury or death.
The issues with these Takata air bags have been well documented, and this latest Mercedes-Benz announcement is part of a massive worldwide recall of vehicles with Takata air bags, deployed in segments, with vehicles at highest risk being recalled first. The potential for rupture can be affected by climates that are extreme in regard to heat and humidity, particularly in the southern U.S. states and territories.
Degradation speed may also be affected by other factors, including the specific environment in which a vehicle is kept and operated, the individual inflator and propellant configuration, and manufacturing variability from facility to facility. The common thread is the inflators housed in the Takata airbags and installed in the passenger side of the front of the car.
While the NHTSA has determined that all Takata air bags with this defect will eventually become dangerous, the defect is not considered high-risk until degradation occurs, which can take years even in climates with temperature cycling and absolute humidity. All manufacturers have agreed to comply with the recall in stages to allow new air bag supplies to be manufactured and distributed to dealers.
Timeline of Events
On Jan. 2, 2019, Takata filed another Defect Information Report with NHTSA according to the previous schedule in the May 4, 2016 Amendment to the Coordinated Remedy Order, announcing a defect in some of the subject inflators. Daimler AG (“DAG”), the parent company of Mercedes-Benz, has not been made aware of any confirmed field incidents with the subject Takata PSPI-2 inflators in their vehicles.
Nonetheless, based on the information provided and the long term investigation and subsequent recalls, and out of an abundance of caution, DAG is voluntarily conducting a recall of the vehicles equipped with the subject Takata PSPI-2 inflators in zones A, B, and C in the United States and its territories, in accordance with the 3rd Amendment to the Consent Order and as previously planned in conjunction with Takata and the NHTSA.
Mercedes-Benz is in the process of notifying owners . An interim letter was mailed between Feb. 1 and March 8, and a second letter will be sent when parts are available. Authorized dealers will then replace the passenger-side front air bag modules in the potentially affected Mercedes-Benz vehicles, at no cost. In the cases of owners who have already addressed this defect by paying out of their own pocket, Mercedes-Benz will provide notice regarding reimbursement to owners in the customer letter.
Owners may contact MBUSA customer service at 1-800-367-6372. Owners may also contact the NHTSA Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov. The NHTSA Campaign Number for these recalls is 19V010000.