Mercedes-Benz Recalls Metris Vans to Check Fuel Line

Mercedes-Benz is finally addressing the unwanted fuel smells in its Metris van after years of complaints by recalling 42,132 vehicles and checking the fuel line connections.

In a document filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Mercedes-Benz said the agency asked the automaker to look into the problem four years ago.

Mercedes said it looked at the complaints but could not identify evidence of a specific risk of fire or vehicle disablement related to the fuel line. However, it did initiate a small recall of 2016 and 2017 Metris vans.

But following the recall, it received occasional customer complaints regarding fuel odor or leaks involving Metris vans. The complaints came in sporadically between 2017 and 2020. Still, the automaker did not identify any repeated or consistent variations from production specifications for the fuel hose connections that might be the source. 

However, the automaker launched an in-line inspection and review of testing protocols for the fuel hose connections at the Vitoria, Spain, and Charleston, S.C. plants, where it assembles the vans.

The analysis identified four potential production process errors during the fuel line assembly in Vitoria or Charleston that included one or more of the following:

  • The fuel hose was not fully advanced over the upper or lower fuel line connection.
  • The fuel hose clamp was not positioned correctly over the fuel hose connection.
  • The fuel hose clamp was not closed correctly.
  • The wrong fuel hose clamp was used.

Following process changes in the Charleston and Vitoria plants in October and November of 2021, the company said it had not received any new complaints regarding fuel odor or leaks from the fuel line on Metris vans. It also has not received any reports of crashes, fires, injuries, or deaths in connection with the fuel line on Metris vans.

Mercedes-Benz will now recall 2017-2022 Metris vans. Dealers will inspect and repair the fuel hose connections, and replace the clamps and fuel hose, as necessary, free of charge. Owner notification letters are expected to be mailed on April 1. Owners may contact the company at (877) 762-8267. The number for this recall is VS2KRAUCH.

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