really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
No data
Average Mileage:
69,100 miles
Total Complaints:
1 complaints

Most common solutions:

  1. not sure (1 reports)
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problem #1

Jan 242018

SL500 5.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 69,100 miles

click to see larger images

ABS failure ABS failure

I have had my 2003 SL500 for 2.5 years. I only drive it 3000 miles per year and it now has 69k miles. Since I drive is so little I was holding off on the message "BRAKE, Visit your work shop". On 1/25/17 all the dash lights turned red with the message that braking power would be reduced. I recalled that Mercedes has the wear indicator sensor in the brake pad. I figured this must now be touching the rotor full time so I parked the car and ordered new pads for the front and rear. 1/28/17 - After inspecting the front pads, they still look brand new, these were not replaced. The rear brakes still had about 3mm of pad left and the sensor was not yet touching (note, sensor is only on the passenger side front and rear on this car) . The rear pads were replaced with new ones. Everything was double checked and put back together. Upon starting the car to test the repair, the dash board was still red and now the big red ABS Failure message appeared!! I go to back up the car and there is zero brakes! I quickly put it in park. I repeat again to pull back forward in the garage, NO BRAKES! Over the years I have changes brakes about 20 times, what the heck design is Mercedes using to make this failure occur? Is this the " ABS Hydraulic Control Assembly" failure I am seeing others report? Update: 10 hours later, I start the car, still red lights but no ABS failure message. The brakes appear to be working normally now.

Will Mercedes replace this part ($1200 to $2000 price)? Will Mercedes cover the labor?

Either way, this is a major safety issue that should have been recalled and replaced on all affected models. Mercedes and Bosch appear to have dropped the ball on this one.

- Bobby R., Poway, US