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Old 11-16-2002, 06:18 PM
Roger Jones
Posts: n/a
E320 "Seat click"

I have a 1998 E320 (out of warranty) but only 47,000 KM (29,500 miles) on the clock.

My car has what I hear is an endemic problem with this model - on acceleration and braking the driver's seat "clicks" and moves very slightly. You can feel it in the back as a tiny jolt. I think there is a similar effect in hard cornering (but I might have been accelerating or braking at the time, too.) Nothing is obviously loose and all the seat motors work properly.

This is not a broken or worn part. I am advised that this is due to a seat component manufactured to the wrong dimension or tolerance in that year (and surounding years?), also that MB will replace the faulty part at no charge. Part numbers 2109104136 and 2109103734 may relate to this repair, but I'm not sure of the authenticity of these numbers.

I have at last brought it to the attention of the service manager at MB Express service here in Toronto, Canada, and he said he would "talk to the factory rep" - so far, par for the course. No reply yet (too soon.)

Does anyone in this informed group have more information on this phenomenon that I could use to support my claim for an out-of-warranty fix by MB? Also what needs to be done?

Many thanks for all replies.

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Old 11-16-2002, 10:58 PM
Gilly's Avatar
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Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Evansville WI
Posts: 9,616
We've seen a few of these. The seat frame (track assemblies) need to be replaced, the sliding part of the track has play in it. Not aware of any bulletin pertaining to the problem.

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Old 11-17-2002, 03:34 PM
Roger Jones
Posts: n/a
Thanks, Gilly. Do you know if the faulty seat frame (track assemblies) were:
1) worn out,
2) broken,
3) incorrectly installed, or
4) incorrectly manufactured?

I presume the last two would have generated the MB bulletins you refer to.

I'm a bit concerned that seat parts could break or wear out in only 29,500 miles! If they did then it's a QA problem and a "moral warranty" claim - however many years the seat "waited in the garage" not being adjusted, and not even being sat on...


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Old 11-17-2002, 03:47 PM
Gilly's Avatar
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Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Evansville WI
Posts: 9,616
Well, the 2 halves of the track have a loosness to them and allows the seat rails to clack or creak against each other. Probably didn't do it when new, but it's doing it now. I guess that would qualify as wear. Why wear out so soon? Don't know. You would normally think "low mileage car, why did it wear this much already?". MB I guess could argue that it's low mileage because it doesn't get out on the highway much, stays in town alot, meaning more driving cycles, so it has had people getting in and out of it more often, more getting in and out of the car, as opposed to a real high mileage car where a driver sits fairly still in the seat for 3-4 hours at a crack. 2 different drivers could also be a contributing factor if the drivers are of contrasting heights and need to adjust the seat back and forth regularly.
I have heard MB Canada is a little less generous with the "goodwill" warranty claims as compared to MB USA, not that MB USA is a bunch of push-overs either.

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Old 01-12-2003, 03:27 PM
Roger Jones
Posts: n/a
Quick update... (on 1998 E320 "seat click")

I wrote a letter to MB Canada complaining about this. Got a reply from their PR flack stating that the car was out of warranty and that I had not brought the matter up in time (all true, I even said this in my letter) but, and here's the slightly better news, I should take it in for "evaluation and etimate" at the dealer's place (don't like the "estimate" bit) and see if the dealer could "do anything for me". Message seemed to be "MB corporate won't lift a finger - except the middle one, perhaps - but the dealer wants to sell you your next car..."

So, I took it in for test drive. Tom, the dealer's Service Consultant, was very polite and concerned. Rick, the 250 pound test driver, was also very solicitous and helpful - but he could NOT make the seat click! We swapped the driving and I (165 pounds) could not make it click either. What a p****r! Now, it was snowy, so we had a bit of trouble getting real "g" forces on the car (and seat.) Finally, in a ploughed but wet shopping mall carpark we did some gyrations, to about +/- 1/4 "g" - still no seat clicks!

Rick said his weight might have reset some loose rail or bushing. Finally, Tom said to wait for it to reoccur and bring it in right away. Neither of them had any doubt that I had experienced the "seat click" right up to bringing the car in.

On the way to work that morning, guess what.. seat still NOT clicking, yet. Nor on way home. But I'm sure it has not fixed itself.

More later...

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Old 01-13-2003, 01:43 AM
haasman's Avatar
Registered User
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: San Francisco, CA
Posts: 3,096

Here is a thread on the topic:

Seat rocking

'03 E320 Wagon-Sold
'95 E320 Wagon-Went to Ex
'93 190E 2.6-Wrecked
'91 300E-Went to Ex
'65 911 Coupe (#302580)
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Old 11-04-2003, 10:26 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 66
I too am getting the infamous click, some questions...

(i) is it best to fix this early, i.e. if I let it get worse will the repair be bigger in the end?
(ii) as it has just started, what parts need to be repaced, I've seen references to the "seat frame" and "rails", are they the same thing?
(iii) is this still a problem or has it been fixed?
(iv) anything else I should know about this?

Please tell me seat frames aren't a consumable like window mechanisms!

Thanks in advance,

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Old 11-05-2003, 08:58 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 15

I had the same problem with my 1998 E320. The sound started as a click and eventually sound like two cats fighting when I went around a corner. I brought it to Mercedes four times before they replaced the seat tracks.

This is a known problem at MB, but they seem reluctant to fix it unless they are pushed. My advice get it fixed as soon as possible.

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