"No start" Due to Anti-Theft System Fault on Mercedes-Benz ML430

A no start condition may develop due to an anti-theft system fault. If the drive authorization module fails to recognize the keys, the engine will not start. In many cases, a new module and keys will be needed to correct this problem.

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Average mileage: 140,333 (40,000–235,000)
3 model years affected: 1999, 2000, 2001
20 people reported this problem
8 people shared problem details
Like the others, my ML has an intermittent problem starting -- after turning the key in the ignition, the engine turns over but fails to engage and after a few seconds, shuts down. Call it a long (non)start. My good friend who is a mechanic told me that there is a fault in the ignition housing and electronics that is causing the system to not recognize the chip in the keys. Supposedly a major repair, requiring new keys (several hundred $), dismantling of the steering wheel, airbag, etc., and something that only a MB dealer can handle...
Trying to start but just won't turn over
no power on the gas pump
no start electric problem
Random times my vehicle will not start. It turns over but shuts down. I turn the ring that surrounds the ignition switch and try starting it. It does start but I may have to try repeatedly doing this sometimes for about 15-20 minutes. This week was the worst and it didn't start for 1.5 hours.
Sometimes the car will not start. It cranks but won't start. I wait 5-10min. and then try again and it starts right up.
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