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  #1  
Old 12-28-2003, 07:57 PM
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Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Harrisburg, PA
Posts: 13
electronic key/remote

I have a 1999 C230 Kompressor sedan. I just purchased another electronic key/remote. Is the dealership the only place to have it programmed to work with my vehicle? The local dealership acts like I'm the enemy since I did not buy the vehicle or even the remote there.

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  #2  
Old 12-29-2003, 10:44 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Evansville WI
Posts: 9,616
Hi Gene:
You won't need a dealer to handle this. Have you already purchased the key?
With the smartkey, you can order the key 2 different ways: "replacement" or "additional". It gets very invloved trying to explain all this, I'm certain I'll wear out my fingers doing this again .

The car original comes with 3 keys (2 full-function and one "valet" key with no remote features. The car CAN have up to 8 keys, every key can be replaced twice (3 total, original and 2 replacements) making a total of 24 keys, but no more than 8 can be useable at any one time. This is because every time you order a replacement key, the previous key is no longer useable, they rolling codes are cancelled out by the replacement key.
Just a little background for you.

Now, what is by far the easiest is to ask the dealer to order an ADDITIONAL key. What this means is that if the car originally came with keys #1, 2 and 3, to order an additional key means they will ask MB for the "next" available key, in this case they would ship key #4. Or if someone along the line already ordered an additional key, they would send #5 for example. MB has a master computer in Germany that keeps track of what has been ordered already. You don't really need to know any of this, you just need to know if you want "another key", OR if you want to order a REPLACEMENT key for one that has already been supplied.
What complicates ordering a REPLACEMENT key is this:
First of all, someone has to determine WHICH key is being replaced. There is no simple way to do this. Sometimes the "bad" key is good enough that the tech can put oit in the ignition and with the MB computer can find out the key #. Often times what needs to be done is all the keys for the car are brought in to the dealership and the key # figured out by the process of elimination. Once this is done, the dealer can for example order "REPLACEMENT key #1" if that was the bad one. MB will figure out from the master computer if they need to provide the first or second replacement key, the dealer ONLY has to know which key # is being replaced. One minor complication to ordering a REPLACEMENT key is this: Once the key is received by the dealer and given to the shop, the NEW key is placed in the ignition and must stay in the ignition for possibly up to 90 minutes. No reason why you can't do this yourself, BTW. There is the small battery check light on the key you may have noticed. This LED will light up. What is going on is the new key needs to delete all the codes left inthe EIS for the previous key. Once this is done the replacement key will be operational. It takes, they say, 90 minutes if for example the previous key was never used. The more the previous key was used, the shorter the wait (less codes need to be erased from the previous key).
As far as the remote features, these features will work immediately when you get the key. The work I just mentioned is only required to make a REPLACEMENT key work to start the engine (or turn in the ignition for that matter).
By contrast an ADDITIONAL key will work for starting the vehicle immediately when you get it; "right out of the box" as I like to call it. So you can see where if you have all 3 keys and simply want another, ADDITIONAL is the way to go. IF you are missing a key and are worried it may be used to steal the car, one permanant option is to have the delaer identify which key is missing (by the process of elimination) and order a replacement key for that key #. After that there is no way to correct this, not by MB, not by anybody. IF you think that you don't want to make a permanant move, the dealer can go through the same steps of identifying the missing key, then temporarily disable that key rail using the same computer they'd use to identify the missing key. The computer can make it so that key won't work, unless the dealer re-enables that key again with the computer.

I'm sure you have other questions, I'll stop explain now and let you ask questions, but the easiest answer is to simply order an additional key and it'll work fine. One final note is that the key design has changed slightly since 99 to a somewhat smaller key. So if you have the original metal blade (for emergency opening of the vehicle) it won't fit the new remote key, so you'll also want to order a new metal blade for the new design key; it's NOT included with a new smartkey.

Gilly

PS If you got the new key from EBay, THROW IT AWAY!!!
The keys are supplied form MB, and the info in the key is vehicle specific, the info in the key is from the MB master computer in Germany. It is not a one size fits all proposition, they are vehicle-specific!!!
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  #3  
Old 03-15-2005, 08:37 PM
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Posts: 5
I agree with what your saying, but when I talked to the dealer, they told me that they order it from Texas and it taked 2 days to receive. To me this means that they must have a way of performing the programming there, not ordering from Germany. Any thoughts about this?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gilly
Hi Gene:
You won't need a dealer to handle this. Have you already purchased the key?
With the smartkey, you can order the key 2 different ways: "replacement" or "additional". It gets very invloved trying to explain all this, I'm certain I'll wear out my fingers doing this again .

The car original comes with 3 keys (2 full-function and one "valet" key with no remote features. The car CAN have up to 8 keys, every key can be replaced twice (3 total, original and 2 replacements) making a total of 24 keys, but no more than 8 can be useable at any one time. This is because every time you order a replacement key, the previous key is no longer useable, they rolling codes are cancelled out by the replacement key.
Just a little background for you.

Now, what is by far the easiest is to ask the dealer to order an ADDITIONAL key. What this means is that if the car originally came with keys #1, 2 and 3, to order an additional key means they will ask MB for the "next" available key, in this case they would ship key #4. Or if someone along the line already ordered an additional key, they would send #5 for example. MB has a master computer in Germany that keeps track of what has been ordered already. You don't really need to know any of this, you just need to know if you want "another key", OR if you want to order a REPLACEMENT key for one that has already been supplied.
What complicates ordering a REPLACEMENT key is this:
First of all, someone has to determine WHICH key is being replaced. There is no simple way to do this. Sometimes the "bad" key is good enough that the tech can put oit in the ignition and with the MB computer can find out the key #. Often times what needs to be done is all the keys for the car are brought in to the dealership and the key # figured out by the process of elimination. Once this is done, the dealer can for example order "REPLACEMENT key #1" if that was the bad one. MB will figure out from the master computer if they need to provide the first or second replacement key, the dealer ONLY has to know which key # is being replaced. One minor complication to ordering a REPLACEMENT key is this: Once the key is received by the dealer and given to the shop, the NEW key is placed in the ignition and must stay in the ignition for possibly up to 90 minutes. No reason why you can't do this yourself, BTW. There is the small battery check light on the key you may have noticed. This LED will light up. What is going on is the new key needs to delete all the codes left inthe EIS for the previous key. Once this is done the replacement key will be operational. It takes, they say, 90 minutes if for example the previous key was never used. The more the previous key was used, the shorter the wait (less codes need to be erased from the previous key).
As far as the remote features, these features will work immediately when you get the key. The work I just mentioned is only required to make a REPLACEMENT key work to start the engine (or turn in the ignition for that matter).
By contrast an ADDITIONAL key will work for starting the vehicle immediately when you get it; "right out of the box" as I like to call it. So you can see where if you have all 3 keys and simply want another, ADDITIONAL is the way to go. IF you are missing a key and are worried it may be used to steal the car, one permanant option is to have the delaer identify which key is missing (by the process of elimination) and order a replacement key for that key #. After that there is no way to correct this, not by MB, not by anybody. IF you think that you don't want to make a permanant move, the dealer can go through the same steps of identifying the missing key, then temporarily disable that key rail using the same computer they'd use to identify the missing key. The computer can make it so that key won't work, unless the dealer re-enables that key again with the computer.

I'm sure you have other questions, I'll stop explain now and let you ask questions, but the easiest answer is to simply order an additional key and it'll work fine. One final note is that the key design has changed slightly since 99 to a somewhat smaller key. So if you have the original metal blade (for emergency opening of the vehicle) it won't fit the new remote key, so you'll also want to order a new metal blade for the new design key; it's NOT included with a new smartkey.

Gilly

PS If you got the new key from EBay, THROW IT AWAY!!!
The keys are supplied form MB, and the info in the key is vehicle specific, the info in the key is from the MB master computer in Germany. It is not a one size fits all proposition, they are vehicle-specific!!!
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  #4  
Old 03-16-2005, 08:43 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Florida
Posts: 1,084
Gilley is correct on new style keys!

They order the key( mechanical and electronic) from the nearest MB center, they have the access to the codes and program it. It can not be reprogrammed, and will initialize itself when inserted in the ignition. I had a bad key on my 01 E, they ordered a replacement, someone screwed up the replacement replaced my good one. They had to order a "additional" key and it fixed the problem.

Last edited by Peter Guenther; 03-16-2005 at 09:44 AM.
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  #5  
Old 03-16-2005, 06:48 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Fort Worth
Posts: 61
I think that this is what you are looking for, they do the keys. Mercedes-Benz USA, LLC located on 15050 Frye Road, Ft. Worth, TX 76155.

Cheers,
Steve
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  #6  
Old 03-20-2005, 05:03 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 32
Cost of replacement keys for my 2000e?

I lost one of my electronic keys. How much for a new one?
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  #7  
Old 03-20-2005, 06:37 PM
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Location: Evansville WI
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About $100-125 I believe.
The MB Lock & Key facility is located in Montvale NJ, not TX.

Gilly
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  #8  
Old 03-20-2005, 09:23 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 32
Red face Thanks - the MB Dealer is alot more

I remember my salesman telling me not to lose any of the 2 keys because they were over $400 to replace. Is this place in Montvale any good?
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  #9  
Old 03-20-2005, 09:53 PM
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Location: Evansville WI
Posts: 9,616
Mmmm, your not getting it.
You order the keys from the dealer. The dealer orders them through Mercedes. The place in the US that actually makes the key is the Mercedes Lock and Key facility located in Montvale NJ. ONLY the dealer can order them. There is no alternative, you have to use the dealer to get a new smartkey. You as an individual can't order a key directly from Mercedes.
Gilly
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  #10  
Old 12-06-2007, 01:43 AM
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Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: IRVINE
Posts: 4
Hi my does my 1999 ML320 have a smart key and if not how do i program my original one when it stopped working.
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  #11  
Old 12-08-2007, 09:17 PM
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Location: Evansville WI
Posts: 9,616
No it's not a Smartkey. Is just the remote function not working??
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  #12  
Old 09-19-2014, 06:11 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: S Texas
Posts: 2
just called local dealer, price here in Tx for remote key $ 240,,with out keyless start and around $ 400 with on my 99 SL500

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