Mercedes-Benz is recalling about 342,366 coupes, convertibles, sedans, and SUVs for faulty software that may prevent the video feed from the backup camera from being displayed. According to Consumer Reports, the auto defect recall includes vehicles from the 2019 through 2021 model years.
The issue could create dangers for drivers and pedestrians if the backup camera fails while the vehicle is reversing.
Details of the Recall
Customers reported to the automaker that when they put their vehicle’s transmission in reverse, the display screen remained blank. In some cases, the image would appear, the screen would then become blank and the image would reappear. Some said the reboot could last several seconds. This recall was issued because there is an increased risk of a crash or injury if the backup camera image doesn’t properly appear when the driver is backing up. The vehicles would also run afoul of federal safety standards.
Mercedes-Benz will notify vehicle owners by mail starting July 13. When the recall begins, dealers will update the multimedia/infotainment system in the affected vehicles at no cost to consumers. The update will be performed either at the dealership or via an over-the-air update, which does not require the owner to bring the vehicle to the dealer.
Vehicle owners who have a “Mercedes Me” subscription, which provides enhanced access to systems and features via a smartphone app, will be able to have the software update performed via an over-the-air update. Those who don’t have the subscription will need to come to a dealership to get the recall repair done.
Why Backup Cameras Are Important
As of May 2018, federal law has required all new passenger cars, trucks, vans, and other vehicles weighing under 10,000 pounds to be equipped with rear-mounted video cameras. While rearview mirrors are useful, they can’t help you see what’s directly behind your vehicle below the level of the rear window and they don’t provide a wide-angle view. According to the latest available government statistics, these shortcomings result in about 210 deaths and 15,000 injuries each year from back-over accidents. Tragically, 31% of these fatalities involve young children under the age of 5.
When a back-over accident occurs as the result of defective backup cameras, the automaker can be held liable for the injuries, damages, and losses caused. Victims and their families can seek compensation by filing an auto product liability lawsuit against the automaker and other responsible parties. An experienced auto defect lawyer will be able to advise victims regarding their legal rights and options.