Mercedes Recalls 250,000 Vehicles for Disabled Emergency Calling

Wonky SIM card software is to blame.

Andrew Krok Reviews Editor / Cars
Cars are Andrew's jam, as is strawberry. After spending years as a regular ol' car fanatic, he started working his way through the echelons of the automotive industry, starting out as social-media director of a small European-focused garage outside of Chicago. From there, he moved to the editorial side, penning several written features in Total 911 Magazine before becoming a full-time auto writer, first for a local Chicago outlet and then for CNET Cars.
Andrew Krok
2022 Mercedes-Benz E450 4Matic
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2022 Mercedes-Benz E450 4Matic

You should be able to call dealerships later this week to see if your car is affected. Owner notifications will take an extra month or so to arrive.

Craig Cole/CNET

Some recalls only cover a small number of vehicles within a limited span of production dates. Other recalls are so vast, their NHTSA reports contain pages and pages of model names. Mercedes-Benz's latest recall definitely leans toward the latter.

Mercedes-Benz has issued a recall for approximately 250,000 cars, SUVs and vans for an emergency-calling system that may inadvertently disable. This is a recall of significant size, due in part to this system's prevalence across the automaker's lineup. It affects the following vehicles with model years between 2017 and 2022, including AMG variants:

  • AMG GT
  • A-Class
  • C-Class
  • E-Class
  • S-Class
  • CLA-Class
  • CLS-Class
  • G-Class
  • GLA-Class
  • GLB-Class
  • GLC-Class
  • GLS-Class
  • SL-Class
  • SLC-Class
  • Metris
  • Sprinter
  • Freightliner Sprinter

The issue comes from the vehicles' embedded SIM cards that are used to access features such as the emergency call system. A software issue could prevent the SIM card from connecting to a mobile phone network, which could prevent owners from being able to make automatic post-collision emergency calls via the vehicle's built-in features, thereby potentially delaying the arrival of first responders. The automaker's report filed with NHTSA notes that the driver will not receive a warning if the mechanism fails.

This is a voluntary recall, and the fix is rather straightforward. Mercedes-Benz will attempt to patch the SIM software using over-the-air updates, and if that's not possible, owners will need the dealership to apply the software. Dealers will be notified of the recall this week, and owners will start receiving recall notices in the mail in July.

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