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Class Action Lawsuit Claims Mercedes C-Class Has Fuel Leak Defect

On January 5, 2022, Mercedes-Benz sent a letter to owners of 2015-2019 Mercedes-Benz C-Class and W205 vehicles advising them of a fuel leak defect but stating that a recall was not possible because parts needed to fix the defect were not available.

According to the Mercedes-Benz letter “the risk of a fire could not be ruled out.” The Mercedes-Benz letter also stated that the affected vehicles

“should be driven in a particularly prudent matter and usage reduced to the bare minimum.”

According to a class action lawsuit, the Mercedes C-Class vehicles contain one or more design and/or manufacturing defects that can cause raw fuel to leak within the engine compartment (or “fuel leak defect”).

For a free lemon law consultation fill out the form below or call us at 1-855-OPT-OUT1 (1-855-678-6881).

According to the class action, affected Mercedes-Benz models are “predisposed” to fuel line leakage within their engine compartments, and the defect can create a dangerous situation wherein a vehicle’s occupants might inhale gasoline fumes. The fuel leak defect can also cause a vehicle to stall or catch fire given its proximity to an ignition source.

The class action lawsuit further alleges that the apparent defect plaguing 2015-2019 Mercedes C-Class models can cause gasoline to leak into the engine compartment, including onto the engine itself and/or a vehicle’s exhaust, from the car’s fuel line connections to the high-pressure fuel pump located at the rear of the engine compartment, potentially causing vehicle fires.

Current or former Mercedes owners should be aware that California lemon law and other state and federal laws may force Mercedes to either “buy the vehicle back,” or provide other important compensation for those experiencing the fuel leak defect.

c-class w205 engine fuel defectUnder California’s lemon law, qualifying “lemons” must be bought back, and that can mean a large cash refund and payoff of your loan or lease. The refund could be as much as everything you paid for the vehicle and everything you owe: monthly payments, down payments, tax, finance charges, license, and registration. In fact, you could even qualify for Two-Times your money back, depending on the circumstances. What Mercedes would have to buy it for has nothing to do with how much the vehicle is currently worth.

There is a formula in the law, that starts with you getting all your money back, and then taking certain deductions and exclusions away from your payment. Those refunds and exclusions are difficult to understand and can be fought against by knowledgeable consumer attorneys.

If you want to know whether your vehicle is impacted, see the list of affected vehicles.

A class action lawsuit was filed over the Mercedes fuel leak defect

Rosen v. Mercedes Benz USA LLC et al, Case No. 1:21-cv-00787-WMR, was filed in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia (Atlanta) on February 24, 2021. An Amended Complaint was filed on June 7, 2021.

The class action was filed by plaintiffs on behalf of a class of current and former Mercedes-Benz vehicle owners and lessees of model years 2015-2019 W205 vehicles, including but not limited to the C-Class models of Mercedes-Benz vehicles.

For free information on your legal right to seek compensation, fill out the form below or call us at 1-855-OPT-OUT1 (1-855-678-6881).

Status of the Mercedes Benz class action lawsuit

On August 25, 2021, after holding a hearing Mercedes-Benz’s motion to dismiss the class action complaint, the Court ordered the case stayed for six months (or until late February 2022) to mediate the matter and confer over Mercedes-Benz’s voluntary extension of its warranty and repairs of the components at issue and whether this warranty extension resolves some or all of plaintiffs’ claims.

According to subsequent court filings, the class action mediation failed to produce a settlement.

On November 1, 2022, the Court denied Mercedes Benz’s motion to dismiss the second amended complaint and allowed the class action claims to move forward into discovery.

Class action lawsuit and lemon law options

In a class action lawsuit, if the class is certified by the Court either for litigation or for settlement purposes, the lawyers who bring the class action represent you. You will receive notice that the case is certified by the Court to proceed as a class action and if settled of the settlement terms, and of your right to opt out of the class by a certain deadline.

If the class action lawyers prevail at trial, you receive whatever relief that is awarded by the judge or jury. But if they lose, you may not be able to litigate claims over the issues raised in the case.

If the case settles and the court preliminarily approves the settlement, you will receive a class notice describing your options. Those options will be: (a) do nothing, in which case you may get nothing but be bound by the settlement, (b) submit a claim form if requested and get whatever relief is made available and you are also bound by the settlement, or (c) opt out and pursue your own claims, in which case you are not bound by the settlement but cannot participate in any of the relief that is being offered to class members.

mercedes c-class fireFor many people, a class action settlement may provide significant benefits and does not require much effort to participate. It also comes with no risk, as the claims have been resolved. But for others, particularly where they may have had fires or failed or uncertain repair attempts related to the fuel leak defect, or other unresolved or lengthy repairs, opting out and pursuing individual claims may provide them an opportunity to receive a better recovery, in a shorter period of time, but with no guarantee they will get anything in settlement.

When it comes to class actions and lemon law claims, what to do can be a complex decision, as it can depend on many factors. These factors include:

  • How old is your car?
  • Have you had fuel leak problems?
  • Have you taken it in for repairs on one or more than one occasion?
  • Do you still own the car?
  • Is the car still under warranty?
  • Where do you live?

Are you willing to consider the opportunity of getting a greater recovery as compared to taking what is offered in settlement?

We are available to help you sort through these questions and make an informed decision. For a free lemon law consultation fill out the form below or call us at 1-855-OPT-OUT1 (1-855-678-6881).

Mercedes Benz Fuel Leak Class Action – FAQ

What is the name and case number of the Mercedes class action lawsuit and where was it filed?

Rosen v. Mercedes Benz USA LLC et al, Case No. 1:21-cv-00787-WMR, was filed in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia (Atlanta) on February 24, 2021. An Amended Complaint was filed on June 7, 2021. The class action was filed by plaintiffs on behalf of a class of current and former Mercedes-Benz vehicle owners and lessees of model years 2015-2019 W205 vehicles, including but not limited to the C-Class models of Mercedes-Benz vehicles.

What is alleged in the Mercedes class action lawsuit?

According to the class action, the above-referenced Mercedes vehicles contain one or more design and/or manufacturing defects that can cause raw fuel to leak within the engine compartment.

According to the class action, affected Mercedes-Benz models are “predisposed” to fuel line leakage within their engine compartments, and the problem can create a dangerous situation wherein a vehicle’s occupants might inhale gasoline fumes. The fuel leak defect can also cause a vehicle to stall or catch fire given its proximity to an ignition source.

The lawsuit further alleges that the apparent defect plaguing 2015-2019 Mercedes models can cause gasoline to leak into the engine compartment, including onto the engine itself and/or a vehicle’s exhaust, from the car’s fuel line connections to the high-pressure fuel pump located at the rear of the engine compartment, potentially causing vehicle fires.

What are the affected Mercedes models identified in the class action lawsuit?

This class action was filed by plaintiffs on behalf of a class of current and former Mercedes-Benz vehicle owners and lessees of model years 2015-2019 W205 vehicles, including but not limited to the C-Class (including C300) models of Mercedes-Benz vehicles, located in the United States.

Plaintiffs also bring class action claims on behalf of residents in the following states: California, Connecticut, New Jersey, and Oregon.

For a free lemon law consultation fill out the form below or call us at 1-855-OPT-OUT1 (1-855-678-6881).

How many Mercedes vehicles are impacted by the fuel leak defect?

According to publicly available reports, the total number of affected vehicles sold is approximately 800,000 vehicles.

What does the class action claim is the cause of the fuel leak defect?

According to Plaintiffs, Mercedes became aware of the fuel leak defect through sources not available to Plaintiffs and Class Members, including, but not limited to, pre-production testing, pre-production design failure mode and analysis data, production design failure mode and analysis data, early consumer complaints made exclusively to Mercedes’s network of dealers and directly to Mercedes, aggregate warranty data compiled from Mercedes’s network of dealers, testing conducted by Mercedes in response to consumer complaints, and repair order and parts data received by Mercedes from its network of dealers. Technical Service Bulletins (“TSBs”) issued by Mercedes to its dealer network, and other remedial actions it has taken concerning the Class Vehicles and other vehicles, evidence Mercedes’s knowledge of the fuel leak defect.

Does the fuel leak defect violate the vehicles’ warranty?

According to class action lawsuit, Mercedes provides purchasers and lessees with an express warranty, which includes a “New Vehicle Limited Warranty Powertrain Coverage.” Mercedes vehicles are covered by a new vehicle limited warranty of 4-Year / 50,000-mile limited warranty (whichever occurs first) or 60 months and unlimited mileage from the in-service date under the Certified Pre-Owned Warranty.

The Warranty covers repairs and adjustments needed to correct defects in materials or workmanship of any part supplied by Mercedes.

Has Mercedes offered consumers anything to resolve this defect?

The Court ordered this lawsuit stayed for six months (or until late February 2022) to mediate the matter and confer over Mercedes-Benz’s voluntary extension of its warranty and repairs of the components at issue to determine whether this extension resolves some or all of the class action claims. According to subsequent court filings, the class action mediation failed to produce a settlement.

On January 5, 2022, Mercedes-Benz sent a letter to vehicle owners advising them of this defect but stating that a recall was not possible because parts needed to fix the problem were not available even though according to the letter “the risk of a fire could not be ruled out.”

The letter also stated that the affected vehicles “should be driven in a particularly prudent matter and usage reduced to the bare minimum.”

Are Mercedes cars with this defect unsafe?

According to the class action lawsuit, affected Mercedes-Benz models are “predisposed” to fuel line leakage within their engine compartments, and the problem can create a dangerous situation wherein a vehicle’s occupants might inhale gasoline fumes.

The fuel leak defect can also cause a vehicle to stall or catch fire given its proximity to an ignition source. The lawsuit further alleges that the apparent defect plaguing 2015-2019 Mercedes models can cause gasoline to leak into the engine compartment, including onto the engine itself and/or a vehicle’s exhaust, from the car’s fuel line connections to the high-pressure fuel pump located at the rear of the engine compartment, potentially causing vehicle fires putting drivers and passengers at risk.

Even according to Mercedes-Benz’ letter to consumers, the risk of a fire could not be ruled out and the affected vehicles “should be driven in a particularly prudent matter and usage reduced to the bare minimum.”

For free information on your legal right to seek compensation, fill out the form below or call us at 1-855-OPT-OUT1 (1-855-678-6881).

What is the status of the class action lawsuit?

Rosen v. Mercedes Benz USA LLC et al, Case No. 1:21-cv-00787-WMR, was filed in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia (Atlanta) on February 24, 2021.

On August 25, 2021, after holding a hearing Mercedes-Benz’s motion to dismiss the class action complaint, the Court ordered the case stayed for six months (or until late February 2022) to mediate the matter and confer over Mercedes-Benz’s voluntary extension of its warranty and repairs of the components at issue and whether this extension resolves some or all of plaintiffs’ claims.

According to court filings, the class action mediation failed to produce a settlement.

On November 1, 2022, the Court denied Mercedes Benz’s motion to dismiss the second amended complaint and allowed the class action claims to move forward into discovery.

Discovery has not been completed and no trial date has been set in this case.

Has the Mercedes class action lawsuit been settled?

Not at this time. However, on August 25, 2021, after holding a hearing Mercedes-Benz’s motion to dismiss the Complaint, the Court ordered the case stayed for six months (or until late February 2022) to mediate the matter and confer over Mercedes-Benz’s voluntary extension of its warranty and repairs of the components at issue and whether this extension resolves some or all of Plaintiffs’ claims.

According to subsequent court filings, the class action mediation failed to produce a settlement.

On November 1, 2022, the Court denied Mercedes Benz’s motion to dismiss the second amended complaint and allowed the class action claims to move forward into discovery.

Is there anything I need to do? When do I need to decide what to do?

As there is no settlement at this time, there is nothing you need to immediately do.

However, if you decide you want to bring your own claim, you can do so now and opt out when you receive any class action notice. Or the class will be defined as those people who have not filed lawsuits or settled their claims, and you will be automatically opted out of the settlement.

For a free lemon law consultation fill out the form below or call us at 1-855-OPT-OUT1 (1-855-678-6881).

What happens if I don’t opt out of the class action lawsuit or settlement?

It depends on how any settlement is structured, but in general if you do not opt out of the settlement you will be bound by its terms. You will receive any benefits offered in the settlement, either automatically or by submitting a claim form. However, you will not be able to bring any individual claim for damages caused by the defect, except possibly for personal injury claims.

If that settlement is finally approved, all class members that have not submitted a timely and valid written request for exclusion from the Settlement Class will be bound by the releases in the Settlement Agreement and other terms and conditions set forth herein and all proceedings, orders and judgments in that lawsuit.

Why would I opt out of the class action or settlement?

For many people a class action provides them some benefits without the need to spend any money or do much other than complete a claim form.

handing keys over to carHowever, some people may qualify for a full vehicle repurchase and much more significant refund. Some people may decide that the relief offered as part of the class action settlement is not adequate, that they do not want to wait to get relief or that they think they will get more if they do not participate in the class action settlement.

This depends on a variety of factors, such as how old is your car, did you have problems in your car as described above, have you tried repairs and how often, do you still own the car, is it still under warranty, and where do you live.

Depending on the answers to those questions, while there is no guarantee you will receive any recovery if you opt out you may have the opportunity to receive significant relief, including a vehicle repurchase and penalties.

What is the Song Beverly Warranty Act?

The Song-Beverly Warranty Act, California Civil Code §1793.2(d)(1), is a California state law that requires manufacturers to repair defects after a reasonable number of repair attempts. What is “reasonable” is not part of hard and fast rules – safety defects should be fixed immediately, for example.

The defects have to be important, and must “substantially impair the vehicle’s use, value, or safety.” Civil Code §1793.22(e)(2). Under Civil Code §1793.2(d)(1), manufacturers are required to promptly offer repurchase or replacement of the Vehicle they cannot fix in a reasonable time frame. In addition, Civil Code §1794(c) and §1793.2(d) provides that customers are entitled to a civil penalty in an amount up to two times actual damages if manufacturers acted “willfully” (meaning knowingly, but not necessarily with wrongful or malicious intent) in ignoring or failing its obligation under Song-Beverly.

Finally, under Civil Code §1794(d), manufacturers must pay plaintiff’s attorney’s fees and costs as part of the settlement, as the Song-Beverly Act is a pro-consumer fee-shifting statute.

May I have additional rights if I am a member of the Armed Forces?

Under Cal. Civil Code 1795.8, if a person is a member of the Armed Forces the protections of the Song-Beverly Act may apply, even if you purchased your vehicle outside of California, so long as the manufacturer sells vehicles in California. The member of the Armed Forces would need to show they were stationed in or a resident of California at the time they purchased the vehicle or at the time they filed a claim against the manufacturer.

What could I get if I opt out and bring a lemon law claim?

Current or former owners should be aware that the California lemon law and other state and federal laws may force Mercedes to either “buy the vehicle back,” or provide other important compensation. Under California’s lemon law, qualifying “lemons” must be bought back, and that can mean a large cash refund and payoff of your loan or lease.

class action settlementThe refund could be as much as everything you paid for the vehicle and everything you owe: monthly payments, down payments, tax, finance charges, license, and registration. In fact, you could even qualify for Two-Times your money back, depending on the circumstances. What Mercedes would have to buy it for has nothing to do with how much the vehicle is currently worth. There is a formula in the law that starts with you getting all your money back, and then taking certain deductions and exclusions away from your payment.

Those refunds and exclusions are difficult to understand and can be fought against by knowledgeable consumer attorneys. Watch the mail, watch your email, and contact a consumer lawyer for advice.

Free Lemon Law Case Review

There are a lot of factors to consider in deciding whether to opt out of a class action settlement and pursue individual claims. We are available to help you sort through these questions and make an informed decision as to your options. Simply fill out the following form and we will promptly contact you or call us at 1-855-678-6881.

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