A proposed class action lawsuit has been filed in California in which the plaintiff’s counsel alleges Mercedes-Benz has long deceived consumers with its supposed practice of announcing vehicle recalls and then, the complaint reads, “doing barely anything.” Highlighted in the case is Mercedes-Benz’s alleged practice of announcing recalls and setting repair dates “many weeks and months” after recall notices arrive in consumers’ mailboxes, only to postpone said dates without providing reimbursement for lease fees, loaner cars or any other means of compensation for the period in which customers’ vehicles cannot be repaired.
Mercedes-Benz has left its customers out to dry with this alleged “deceptive pattern” of conduct, the lawsuit charges, behavior the complaint points out does not exempt recalls related to Takata airbag dangers. The 18-page suit highlights in particular an October 2017 recall of roughly 495,290 Mercedes-Benz vehicles due to “insufficient electrical grounding” in steering wheel components that could cause the sudden deployment of driver’s side airbags. The case says this recall is linked to a previous, larger recall over Takata airbag problems in certain Mercedes-Benz models. According to the lawsuit, the confluence of the two recalls has put Mercedes-Benz customers like the plaintiff in a precarious position.
“[The plaintiff] has also strangely received recall notifications of the Takata recall and has been made aware by Mercedes-Benz that it is still unable to replace the parts pursuant to that recall,” the complaint reads. “As a result of [the plaintiff’s] knowledge of this previous recall, [the defendant’s] insufficient track record in satisfying the recall, and/or of the grave danger involved, [the plaintiff] reasonably perceives great danger in the recall at issue given it also involves airbags.”
Per the plaintiff, the lawsuit says the man was given a December date to replace faulty airbag parts. As the date grew closer, the case says, the repair was postponed due to “a lack of parts.” The man was reportedly told he would get a new date to take care of the recall, yet as of April 2018, Mercedes-Benz is still unable to fix the airbag electrical grounding issue in the plaintiff’s vehicle due to the ostensible parts shortage, the suit claims.
The lawsuit goes on to allege Mercedes-Benz dealerships have been of little help to customers, offering an array of explanations for the repair delays that “often contradicted the recall letters provided to consumers.”
“[The plaintiff] and the Class are left wondering if Mercedes-Benz even knows what the actual problems are with their expensive luxury vehicles and what the true dangers are or if Mercedes-Benz even intended to ever effectuate its ‘Fake Recall,’” reads the complaint.
The lawsuit seeks to cover anyone in the United States who purchased or leased the following Mercedes-Benz vehicle models: