Mercedes-Benz Recalls Vehicles for Issue with Semi Automated Driving Feature
Mercedes-Benz is recalling 6,200 S-Class sedans, coupes and convertibles from the 2018 and 2019 model years because their semi-automated steering functions such as lane centering and lane keeping assist may continue to work even when the driver’s hands are off the wheel for a prolonged period of time. According to Consumers Reports, when it is working as intended, the system should sound a warning if it does not detect the driver’s hands on the wheel. If the driver fails to respond to repeated warnings, the car will turn on its hazard lights and slowly come to a stop.
Details of the Recall
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) says the semi-automated system’s failure poses a serious issue because a driver’s inattention might increase the risk of a crash. Also, the system may not warn drivers telling them to keep their hands on a wheel and may not bring the vehicle to a complete stop on its own. This recall follows a similar problem with the 2019 Lincoln Nautilus SUV. About 2,700 of those SUVs were recalled in January because of a defective hands-off system.
All of the vehicles affected by this recall were manufactured from Feb. 7, 2017 through Aug. 3, 2018 and were equipped with Active Steering Assist. When the recall begins, dealerships will perform a software update to the Active Steering Assist system at no cost to owners. Mercedes-Benz began notifying owners of these affected vehicles Feb. 15. If you have a question regarding your vehicle, please contact Mercedes-Benz customer service at 800-367-6372.
The Dangers of Automated Technology
When it comes to automobiles, automation appears to be the way of the future. A number of vehicles sold today come with semi-automated features including steering assist and software that lets drivers know if they are not sticking to their lanes. These are, of course, useful features that are meant to operate vehicles safely. They are intended to help reduce auto accidents.
However, we have seen, for example, with Tesla, that such semi-automated features can also be dangerous especially when automakers and tech companies mislead drivers about the limitations of such technology. When semi-automated features are faulty, as is the case with these Mercedes-Benz vehicles, there is certainly the heightened risk of a crash. If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of semi-automated or automated vehicles, you may be able to seek compensation for your injuries and losses. Please contact an experienced auto defect lawyer to obtain more information about pursuing your legal rights.