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2013-03-20 10:29

MERCEDES MODELS PROBED: Hundreds of complaints on older Mercedes-Benz E-Class models have been reported in the US. The 2013 probe could affect 250 000 units should the cars have to recalled.

US safety regulators are investigating reports of fuel leaks in about 250 000 Mercedes-Benz E-Class cars.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and Mercedes-Benz have received 533 complaints from owners about a strong odour of fuel, mainly after filling up their cars.

The agency says fuel may be leaking from the upper part of the petrol tanks, but no fires or injuries have been reported as yet.

PAST PROBLEM

The investigation affects vehicles from 2003 to 2008 model years. The agency is looking into whether the leaks were caused by a 2008 pollution control recall.

The problem surfaced during 2012 when complaints about E55 AMG models from 2003 to 2006 started coming in.

On Friday (March 15) the safety agency extended the probe to other E-Class vehicles. Following the investigation, the agency's regulators will determine if a recall is needed.

Mercedes-Benz said it's cooperating with NHTSA in the probe and warned customers to contact a dealer should they smell an unusually strong smell of fuel when in the car.

Mercedes-Benz South Africa could not comment whether any local models would be affected.

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