Mercedes-Benz is conducting a voluntary safety recall of a small number of 2012 model year CLS550 and CLS550 4MATIC luxury sedans to fix a defective hood latch.
A notice on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) website lists the number of vehicles potentially affected at just 23. Affected vehicles were built over a 13-day period, from December 1, 2011 through December 13, 2011.
2012 Mercedes-Benz CLS-ClassEnlarge Photo
The problem stems from bolts holding the hood’s secondary latch striker that may not have been tightened to specification.
Over time, the bolts fastened with reduced torque may loosen, thus increasing the possibility of accidental hood opening if the primary locking mechanism fails, or if the hood is not sufficiently closed.
In the event that the hood opens while the vehicle is being driven, the risk of a crash increases.
As our colleagues over at Motor Authority point out, “there is little risk to owners, since the bolts have the potential to vibrate loose in extreme cases only.” Documentation from Mercedes-Benz (PDF) indicates that the driver is made aware of this condition by a warning message in the instrument cluster that the engine hood is not properly shut.
What Mercedes-Benz will do
Mercedes-Benz will notify owners and dealers will perform a vehicle inspection of the bolts, retightening them, as necessary. The Mercedes-Benz safety recall campaign is expected to begin in December 2012.
In the meantime, owners of 2012 Mercedes-Benz CLS550 and CLS550 4MATIC luxury sedans with any questions or concerns may contact the automaker at 1-800-367-6372.
Alternatively, owners of vehicles involved in the campaign may contact NHTSA’s Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 or go to http://www.safercar.gov. Reference the NHTSA campaign ID No. 12V533000.