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  #1  
Old 06-26-2007, 01:05 AM
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Coil Spring Perch Failure - NHTSA Investigation

:MODERATOR EDIT ADDING DATA LINK:
W210 DANGEROUS FLAW please read (crosslinked in post #1 to all on topic data)
W210 DANGEROUS FLAW please read (crosslinked in post #1 to all on topic data)
:MODERATOR EDIT ADDING DATA LINK:



Hi,

I have some information to pass on:

Larry Long, a Safety Defects Specialist in the Office of Defects Investigation at NHTSA contacted me. His office is currently looking at coil spring perch failures on the 1996-2003 E-Class models and has opened an investigation on this issue.

They are aware of owners complaining about rusted perch spring towers (also discussed on this forum) and the cost involved of having them replaced. But he is specifically interested in talking with any owner that may have been in an accident due to loss of control because of coil spring perch failure, or may have been injured due to this condition.

You can reach Larry by e-mail at Larry.Long@dot.gov or by calling him directly at 202-366-6281.

Eric Wagner
Vice President
Greater Washington Section - MBCA


Last edited by whunter; 01-02-2011 at 03:38 AM. Reason: Added data link
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Old 06-26-2007, 10:57 PM
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bump
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Old 06-28-2007, 11:52 PM
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Please note that the 1-800 number does not work anymore. You can reach Larry Long at 202-366-6281.

Best regards,

Eric
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Old 06-29-2007, 09:45 AM
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Wow. The government at work. I hope they make MB fix the issue for free.
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  #5  
Old 06-29-2007, 05:48 PM
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Finally, it's about time. I filed a complaint years ago. Sleazy MB USA will never admit their critical safety design flaw though
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Old 06-29-2007, 06:20 PM
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While I agree that it is a critical design flaw, I have yet to hear of a single instance of any injury or even accident caused by this. Lots of speculation about how it could happen, but only that.
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Old 06-29-2007, 08:24 PM
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Matt,

I think that is exactly the point! They want to find out whether anyone has been in an accident or ohterwise been injured. If that happened, did the insurance pay or MB?

So, let's see what will happen here.

Eric
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Old 07-02-2007, 09:57 AM
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I don't think there have been many accidents as a result of the perch failure. They seem to all fail at fairly low speeds, usually during turning, like pulling into a parking space. The fact is you probably won't lose control of the car if one fails, even at higher speeds. Just as if a spring broke, the control arms remain attached to the car, the steering will still work, it is just very shocking to have one side drop down and makes lots of noise if the wheel happens to contact the fender. Probably a little worse than getting a blowout at highway speeds...but still bad and it should be fixed by MB before it happens on any car.
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Old 07-02-2007, 10:07 AM
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Talking Spring perch failures due to SALT on the roads?

I wonder how many of the failures that occur are due to the heavy winter salting that occurs in the Northern climes? That produces lots of problems under any car, unless the owner avoids driving in the salt or washes the underside of the car religiously after such excursions.

Ben Carter
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Old 07-02-2007, 12:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by my_w123 View Post
Matt,

I think that is exactly the point! They want to find out whether anyone has been in an accident or ohterwise been injured. If that happened, did the insurance pay or MB?

So, let's see what will happen here.

Eric
Indeed. I'm as curious as you.
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  #11  
Old 07-02-2007, 01:37 PM
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I've had dozens of 210's arrive at my shop on flat-beds, due to rusted spring perches. Not one was involved in an accident. Like nhdoc says, they usually fail at very low speeds, minimizing the potential for serious damage. Also, many more are discovered during routine inspection, long before they fail, thus preventing the ride on the flat-bed.

I think MB should be taking better care of 210 owners with respect to the spring perch issue, but it's not like they ignore them either. MB routinely pays a portion of the repair bill, usually half. If you're the original owner, and you've serviced the car at the dealer you bought it from, there's a good chance your dealer will pick up some, if not all of the remaining amount. On the other hand, if you're the third owner, and you've never serviced the car at a dealer, be happy if you get any help at all. That's just the way it works.
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Old 07-02-2007, 04:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ILUVMILS View Post
If you're the original owner, and you've serviced the car at the dealer you bought it from, there's a good chance your dealer will pick up some, if not all of the remaining amount. On the other hand, if you're the third owner, and you've never serviced the car at a dealer, be happy if you get any help at all. That's just the way it works.
That explains why the dealer wouldn't have any inclination to help you out, but not a very good reason as to why Daimler Benz wouldn't foot the bill.
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  #13  
Old 07-02-2007, 07:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blueeagle289 View Post
I wonder how many of the failures that occur are due to the heavy winter salting that occurs in the Northern climes? That produces lots of problems under any car, unless the owner avoids driving in the salt or washes the underside of the car religiously after such excursions.

Ben Carter
I would question that theory. Our 124's have been in the Pennsylvania salt and grime every winter and the undersides of both cars are in very good shape. No special care is taken either. I think the 210's had some cost cutting that is showing up now. JMHO.
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Old 07-02-2007, 07:19 PM
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< __________________
>>

The salt and harsh winters have the same effect on either chassis..the 210s had the perch rust out and the 124s had the bottom coil of the spring rust and break off. Both the same cause , just different place.
The 210s was remedied with the support kit and the 124 spring problem was remedied with the addition of the Zinc spring inserts to the bottom support.
I have seen as many 124 front spring lowen ends rust/break as 210 perches.. both known , common faults on Nothern/Wintered chassis.
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  #15  
Old 07-03-2007, 10:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Arthur Dalton View Post
I have seen as many 124 front spring lowen ends rust/break as 210 perches.. both known , common faults on Nothern/Wintered chassis.
I can vouch for that - happened to my 300E up here in Canada. Spring broke exactly where you described - due to rust.

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