Mercedes Benz has informed owners of nearly 300,000 vehicles in the U.S. to discontinue driving them as there seems to be a major issue with the brakes. The German automaker has recalled vehicles after discovering that some have the possibility of causing a vacuum leak. Currently, there have been no reports of casualties or injuries resulting from the noted defect.
The recall covers ML-Class, GL-Class, and R-Class vehicles through the 2006 to 2012 models.
The company shared documents released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration on Thursday. It claims that the SUV's brake boosters may become corroded after prolonged exposure to moisture. If corrosion occurs, the internal components of the brake booster may crack and, in turn, will reduce the brake’s effectiveness.
Serious accidents may occur if stress is applied to the booster hardware. The braking power will, in turn, be incompetent within the vehicle.
Mercedes said in their statement:
“In rare cases of very severe corrosion, it might be possible that a strong or hard braking application may cause mechanical damage in the brake booster, whereby the connection between the brake pedal and brake system may fail. In such a very rare case, it would not be possible to decelerate the vehicle via the brake pedal. Thus, the risk of a crash or injury would be increased. The function of the foot-activated parking brake is not affected by this issue.”
What should Mercedes owners do if their vehicle poses brake threats?
To recognize whether one’s brakes are in danger, one can observe soft brake pedals or audible signs of air in the braking system (including sucking, wheezing or hissing noises which indicate a contaminated brake fluid).
Mercedes has told vehicle owners to park their vehicles until an authorized dealership can inspect them. Automobiles that show no signs of corrosion can continue to be used. Vehicles that show “advanced corrosion” will go through additional tests. Their statement read:
“An authorized Mercedes-Benz dealer will remove the rubber sleeve and inspect the brake booster housing on the affected vehicles. Vehicles that do not exhibit advanced corrosion may continue to be driven with no further action. Vehicles that show advanced corrosion will have an additional test performed to ensure the functionality of the brake booster. Vehicles that pass the additional test may be driven for up to two years but must return for an additional repair.”
Vehicles that do not pass the additional test will require a brake booster replacement.
If a repair is required and cannot be fixed immediately, an authorized dealer will coordinate solutions for the customers, including alternative driving options.