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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 11
Injuries / Deaths:
4 / 0
Average Mileage:
81,855 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2008 Mercedes-Benz C300 electrical problems

electrical problem

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2008 Mercedes-Benz C300 Owner Comments (Page 3 of 9)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #131

Dec 122014

C300 6-cyl

  • 64,890 miles


These parts pose a risk vehicle safety and may exist on other vehicles of this design and manufacture. Please review air bags, steering lock. Electrical main system. And tires used on this car.....updated 03/15/16 updated 03/17/16.

- Miami Gardens, FL, USA

problem #130

Aug 052015


  • 63,000 miles
Car would not start, locked in park. Battery checked ok. Alternate key did not start car. Appears to be electronic ignition switch -- which will require replacement. Noted many online forum similar complaints, along with the below mbusa campaign. Campaign no. 2008020003, March 2008 subject: Model 204, model year 2008 replace electronic ignition switch daimler ag has determined that the eis may malfunction preventing the electric steering lock and the central locking from functioning. Dealers will replace the eis on the affected vehicles during the next workshop visit.

- Marietta, GA, USA

problem #129

Mar 032015


  • 91,319 miles
The key locks and unlocks the doors the lights come on and the dash lights up. You can insert and turn the key but the car will not start. The stering wheel is locked and it is stuck in park. I tried power jumping and it did nothing, I didn't think the battery was the problem but had it checked anyways. The battery checked out fine. I check the fuses that are associated with the starter and all was fine also. Only thing left was get it towed to the Mercedes dealership, found out that the steering wheel lock issue is a common thing with my car model, eis failure seems increasingly common on 2008 models for some reason.

- Miramar, FL, USA

problem #128

Aug 022015


  • 104,000 miles


When I left the gym my car wouldn't not start. I had to walk home and have my car towed. Battery is fine but the ignition won't turnover. Bad eis just like the other hundreds of people complain about.

- Princeton, IN, USA

problem #127

Jul 232015


  • 57,000 miles
Car will not start. Very common for this type of problem. The key will not start the engine

- Placentia, CA, USA

problem #126

Jul 032015


  • 65,000 miles
Eis/ steering wheel lock failure. Left stranded for 4 hours.

- Marshfield, WI, USA

problem #125

Jul 062015

C300 6-cyl

  • 102 miles


On July 6, 2015, I left work to go home and my car would not start. This is the third time in three weeks I have had to have my car towed from work due to it not starting. However, this time I had it towed to the Mercedes Benz dealer and was informed I have a faulty eis system that needs $2100 in repairs. I immediately informed them that the car has been shutting down on me for the past three weeks and I don't believe I am the only person having this problem. After being given a loaner car, until I can decide to have the repair work initiated, I found out through online research that Mercedes Benz has known of this problem and has not offered to recall any of the cars affected in the 2008 C300 class or any other class of mb with the same eis problems. It's sad that we allow them to sell us these cars and they wont honor our patronage enough to fix them when the break down as a fault of design by mb. It is absolutely astonishing the number of complaints with this same electrical issues that plague mb C-class cars. The only reason no one has died so far, is because once they cut off you can't start them to drive anywhere..and that leads to safety issues as well!! I heard that some of the electrical problems can be covered under the cam solenoid recall mb has. I plan on checking with my dealer in regards to this on tomorrow...updated 08/24/16

- Baltimore, MD, USA

problem #124

Jul 032015


  • 35,000 miles
Same as many others, steering lock, wouldn't id key, wouldn't start. Eis problem I believe. $980 to fix with only 35K miles! this is a frequent problem according to the forums I have visited.

- Jamestown, NC, USA

problem #123

Jun 042015


  • 41,000 miles
The electronic steering lock just shutoff. The car came out of comfort while I was driving, the C-in the box-just disappeared off the cluster and I knew this is what happened because it happened three times them started up two days later. This has been a common problem with Mercedes C300 as I read so many complaints and posts.

- Brooklyn, NY, USA

problem #122

Jun 212015


  • 108,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Mercedes Benz C300. The contact stated that when the key was turned in the ignition switch, the vehicle failed to start without warning. The contact mentioned that the radio, the headlights, and other electrical functions operated but the vehicle failed to start. The vehicle was towed to a dealer but was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 108,000. The VIN was not available.

- Henrico, VA, USA

problem #121

Jun 102015


  • 90,721 miles


This is the second time this has happened. First time I go to start my 2008 C300 and it will not start, will not shift into neutral, no windows will go up or down. I am a registered nurse and was working home health. Was stuck at a patients house and not able to see any other patients for the rest of the week. Took to Mercedes dealership and told it was the eis. So $1200 dollars later it was fixed. Again 2 years later the exact same thing happens and what do you know, eis and $1200 repair again. Even the guy from the Mercedes service department said this is a very common problem with this year and model. Mercedes should be ashamed to charge so much for a car and not stand behind their work. If this is a common problem it should be a recall. I will never own another Mercedes as long as I live. My wifes first Kia was more reliable than this car.

- Taylors , SC, USA

problem #120

Jun 082015


  • 74,000 miles
I came home from work on 6/8/2015 and later returned to my car to meet a friend for dinner. The doors unlocked and the lights came on but the car will not start. The steering wheel turns but the car will not start. I have tried both keys, checked th battery. After speaking with my mechanic I have found out that is is the ignition switch. I will have to have the car towed to the dealership. I have seen on the Benz forum that this is a common problem that Mercedes will not take ownership of. I will never by a Mercedes again.

- High Point, NC, USA

problem #119

Jul 012014


  • 140,000 miles
My lcd navigation screen does not turn on anymore. It randomly flashes when I'm driving and causes a distraction. After some research, it seems like an extremely common issue with many C300 models of the 2008 year. Some owners have reported smoke coming out of the corner of the screen.

- Chino, CA, USA

problem #118

May 022011


  • 42,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Mercedes Benz C300. The contact stated that the vehicle failed to start. The contact mentioned that the key was stuck in the lock position and the key was not programmed to the ignition switch. In addition, the steering wheel failed. The failure recurred several times. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it was diagnosed that the engine ignition lock fractured and needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 42,000. The VIN was not available.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #117

May 022015


  • 70,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Mercedes Benz C300. While the vehicle was parked, the key was stuck in the lock position and the key was not programmed to the ignition. The vehicle was taken to a dealer where it was diagnosed that the ignition switch needed to be replaced. The vehicle was in the process of being repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 70,000. The VIN was not available.

- Simivalley , CA, USA

problem #116

Jan 022012


  • 60,000 miles
Belt tensioner makes loud metallic noise around the engine area. Car wouldn't start. Camshaft adjuster magnets replaced. Water leak from sun roof drain side mirror cracked under cold weather

- Ridgewood, NJ, USA

problem #115

May 012015


  • 99,000 miles
Got in my car last night to go home and attempted to crank it. It would not start. The key turned in the ignition and lights worked but the engine would not turn over. Last year in February I had to have the car towed to the dealership by roadside assistance and have ignition switch replaced for a similar situation at my cost. I am awaiting news from the dealership as to the problem this time but this is ridiculous for this vehicle to have this type of complaints from so many consumers and Mercedes not stand behind this product by recalling it. I am a woman and had no one to assist me or provide transportation home. You buy a product thinking that it is dependable but this car isn't it.

- Pike Road, AL, USA

problem #114

Apr 172015


  • 61,688 miles
Same as everyone else. The car would not start and we had it towed in. I researched the complaints online and saw that Mercedes has a problem with this issue (eis/sis) they sold me a new key for $547 and said that it was fixed. Picked it up on Saturday and had it towed back in on Tuesday. Now they say it's the eis to the tune of another $1500. I will not buy another Mercedes until I see how they stand behind the one I have...I hope that we do not have to call the news stations and file a class action suit to get it fixed. Mercedes needs to do the right thing and repair their defect.

- Hutto, TX, USA

problem #113

Apr 162015


  • 57,000 miles
The vehicle would not start, the key turned in the ignition with no crank. All other electrical features worked and the battery tested as being ok. The electrical ignition system just did not respond. Tow to the dealership. $1350 to fix it.

- San Jose, CA, USA

problem #112

Apr 152015

C300 6-cyl

  • 50,000 miles
The electronic ignition system also known as eis is broken. I turned if the car and it did not read my key. After looking in the internet and speaking with the mechanic it is obvious that the models 2008 09 10 have this defective part. I also spoke to a service technician at the dealer who wished to remain anonymous and he admitted that just at his dealer thousands of vehicles are brought in for this same issue and yet Mercedes Benz refuses to recall. The government needs to police this matter which is costing minimum $1300.

- Miami, FL, USA

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