After several complaints by customers, Daimler AG’s Mercedes-Benz announced in April of this year a global recall affecting nearly 137,000 of its older model year sport utility & performance vehicles in America. Mercedes-Benz U.S.A. is recalling 136,751 of its model year 2000-‘02 M-Class SUVs and 2000-‘04 AMG performance vehicles.
The problem lies in a defective brake lamp switch. The malfunction does not allow drivers to disengage their cruise control by tapping on the breaks, as one normally would. In some cases an excessive amount of force must be applied to the breaks for the cruise control to shut off. At high speeds, this presents the possibility of a dangerous crash, which could lead to bodily injury, car damage and/or death!
In some of the vehicles drivers can disengage the cruise control by using the “cruise control stalk” system on the steering wheel. But a panicked driver may not make this realization under pressure or fear of a crash.
Rob Moran, a Mercedes-Benz U.S.A. spokesperson said no crash nor injury has been reported. By firmly applying consistent pressure to the brakes the cruise control system should disengage according to the spokesperson’s statements. “Mercedes-Benz U.S.A. will replace the brake lamp switch on these models beginning in September at no cost to customers,” Moran went on to say. To “ensure an adequate replacement parts supply” it will take a few months before Mercedes-Benz U.S.A. begins fixing these problem vehicles.