Mercedes-Benz CL500 Problems

RepairPal has identified the most common problems with the Mercedes-Benz CL500 as reported by actual vehicle owners. We'll tell you what the problem is and what it'll take to fix it.

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Known Problems

Analog Tele Aid units are no longer supported and must be updated to digital, preferably at a dealership or a well-equipped independent shop. The update and all related factors should be completed at the same time.

The cooling system hoses may fail unexpectedly. The hoses can look good on the outside, but the rubber can degrade and erode on the inside. If not carefully checked, the hoses can burst at any time.

The climate control system can fail or perform erratically due to internal problems with the climate control button electrical contacts. Replacement of the climate control assembly is commonly required to correct this problem.

Vehicles with automatic level control that ride harshly in the rear (no give in the suspension) may have one or both dampening actuators which have failed. It is commonly recommended the actuators be replaced in pairs.

The rubber bond in the harmonic balancer can decay, which causes the balancer to move and work its way toward the timing cover. If the balancer comes into contact with the timing cover while the engine is running, it will fracture and damage the cover and potentially other surrounding parts. The harmonic balancer should be inspected at every service.

The electrical connector at the automatic transmission may leak fluid. Over time leaking fluid could migrate through the wiring harness and damage the transmission control module. If that happens a new harness and control module may be necessary to correct the problem.

CD changers, command units, voice control units, PSE units, and Tele Aid units are prone to failure, especially in early models.

Problems with the pneumatic system can cause closing assist and door lock issues.

High mileage vehicles may develop a leak from one or more of the transmission oil seals.

A fluid leak from the front of the vehicle may be a result of a worn steering dampening shock. Our technicians tell us that if a leak is noted from the dampening shock it should be replaced.

Vehicles equipped with a 7-speed automatic transmission may develop a rough shifting condition, most commonly going up from first to second gear and going down from third to second or second to first gear. Our technicians tell us this is due to an internal component failure. Mercedes has released updated parts; the transmission will need to be removed and disassembled to complete the necessary repairs.

The engine wiring can degrade because the insulating material falls off leaving the bare wire exposed. This can cause many problems depending on which wires are exposed and what they touch.

The door for the vanity mirror (or the frame for the door) can break; due to a redesign, the mirror "cassette" will need replacement.

The bushings for the shifter lever wear out to the point where they break and fall out. This causes excessive movement (loose feel) in the shifter lever and a clanging-type noise when changing gears.

The active body control system can leak fluid from numerous areas, including the tandem pump, hydraulic lines, struts, and/or seals. If it is not repaired, the vehicle ride height could drop too low and cause damage to the undercarriage.