"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: 139,846 (40,000–235,000)
3 model years affected: 1999, 2000, 2001
21 people reported this problem
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problem details
1999 Mercedes-Benz ML430 136,000 mi,
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...
2000 Mercedes-Benz ML430 154,000 mi,
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.
2001 Mercedes-Benz ML430 152,000 mi,
CODE 28500 WILL NOT START
Trying to start but just won't turn over
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.