really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 10
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
61,862 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.

2006 Mercedes-Benz ML350 electrical problems

electrical problem

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2006 Mercedes-Benz ML350 Owner Comments

problem #20

May 112016


  • 130,000 miles


"takata recall". in house wiring,3rd brake light, turn markers, brake lights all non operational. Taken to dealership problem still occurs!

- Asheville, NC, USA

problem #19

May 312016

ML350 6-cyl

  • miles
Recently I was driving and my check engine came on. I took it to the Mercedes-Benz dealer to have it checked and the diagnostic reported the balance shaft and intake repair was needed. The issue is that there was a lawsuit against mbusa for faulty balance shafts. At no point in time was I informed of the claim on my vehicle. I need assistance in having my vehicle repaired before the time expires. Mb usa has defective parts and they are not acknowledging the repair.

- Miami, FL, USA

problem #18

Mar 092016


  • 82,000 miles
Right rear taillight had an electrical fire that started in the wire housing. The car was parked (stationary)

- Bronx, NY, USA

problem #17

Aug 102014


  • 140,000 miles


The contact owns a 2006 Mercedes Benz ML350. The contact stated that while driving approximately 50 mph, the ABS and the check engine warning light illuminated. In addition, the speed decreased and failed to increase over 30 mph. The failure recurred on several occasions. The vehicle was taken to the dealer but the failure was unable to be determined. The vehicle was not repaired. The VIN was not included in NHTSA campaign number: 08V303000 (electrical system). The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 140,000.

- Shreveport, LA, USA

problem #16

Nov 302013


  • 76,000 miles
I had a 2006 ML350. It spontaneously caught fire as it was parked for two hours after I had driven it. The firemen state in the report it was an electrical fire and started from a short in the rear taillight harness.I brought this to Mercedes Benz usa's attention and they were careless about the safety dangers that this caused/posed. They said it wasn't a manufacturers' defect after the 2 month long investigation was stamped inconclusive.they were of more concern about this being leaked or exposed and tried to sweep my case under the rug. They only gave me one case manager and limited me only to speak with her after begging to speak with another manager. After being trapped in this corporate cover up I had no where else to turn. Susan M( my West coast regional case manager) how many other vehicle cases did they sweep under the rug like mine? I do not expect this kind of cover-up from Mercedes and would expect them to stand behind their vehicles. www.mercedesdefects.com/2008/04/wire-harness-defect.html please get this to the next step before people loose their life! I could have died this night! this is their factory recall Mercedes Benz usa said they didn't have for my vehicle after the fire. Possible electrical fire from water damaged lift gate control module for models: Mercedes-Benz ML320 bluetec, Mercedes-Benz ML350, Mercedes-Benz ML550, Mercedes-Benz ML63 amg electrical & lights, May 1, 2009 repairpal expert overview: Due to a faulty seal around the tail light assembly, water may enter the rear compartment containing the spare tire. The water could damage the lift gate control module, causing it to fail. The failed module could overheat, increasing the risk of a fire. Dealers will update the tail light seals and relocate the lift gate control module. This recall is expected to begin during April of 2009. The Mercedes recall number is 2009030003.

- Oceanside, CA, USA

problem #15

Mar 282015

ML350 6-cyl

  • 118,021 miles
I was driving with the driver's side electric seat heater turned on. I noticed a burning smell and felt a burning pain on my back. After exiting the vehicle I saw that the seat heater had burned a hole through the leather driver's seat and through my jacket.

- Short Hills, NJ, USA

problem #14

Mar 132015

ML350 6-cyl

  • 60,000 miles


I was driving and I turned on my seat heater, and I saw smoke. I burned my clothing and have a little burn on my back. The seat was burning and had a little fire.

- South Hackensack, NJ, USA

problem #13

Aug 012014


  • 80,000 miles
Cam-shaft and crank-shaft malfunction. Vehicle wont drive properly and also experiencing electrical issues. Lights and locking mechanisms going on and off on their own.

- East Elmhurst, NY, USA

problem #12

Jan 042014


  • 69,000 miles
Night before incident the automatic rear lift gate opened when front driver door would be opened or closed. While vehicle was parked and shut off, tail hazard light were activated along with warning alarm for tailgate malfunction or open. During the morning of the incident, vehicle continued to show same issues. When vehicle was later entered, issue with tailgate opening seemed to have stopped, after driving an approximate 5-7 miles, odder of smoke emerged, tailgate warning alarm sounded along with normal traffic horn, in addition cabin lights turned on and warn messages appeared on dash for flat tire, blown bulbs, etc, driver pulled to side of road and turned off vehicle to investigate. Soon after turning off vehicle smoke began to fill cabin, driver immediately exited vehicle, flames over took vehicle within minutes. Remains show upper half of cabin (seats and up) took primary burn, flooring was not burned. Engine bay only has minor fire damage from large flames and heat going out of front windshield.

- Fall River, MA, USA

problem #11

Nov 302013

ML350 6-cyl

  • 75,000 miles
Owner had arrived home at 7:00 P.M. from work and was inside his residence. At 10:00 P.M. police and fire personnel came to his door to inform him that his car was on fire. One resident said that, as he was walking in the parking lot, he noticed there was fire in the passenger side rear tail light (around 10:00 pm) and when he looked inside, there was fire in the vehicle directly behind the rear tail light. He ran for a fire extinguisher and also yelled for help and for someone to call 911 for the fire department. Both fire and police arrived. Car had not been driven for 3 hours and was parked, was driven only 7 miles three hours earlier with no stops. Car has been considered totaled by insurance due to the amount of damage incurred and had been owned for only one year, serviced regularly by Mercedes Benz, and all recalls had been up-to-date! the servicing Mercedes dealership promptly informed Mercedes Benz usa who also promptly contacted the owner to fill out the appropriate paperwork and submit pictures for review. This paperwork/pictures were also promptly submitted. However, due to the seriousness of this fire and possible loss of life and property that could have been catastrophic, this report is also being sent to your Agency for follow-up. (note that there was a recall on the tail lights in the ML350 for possible fire for 2007 and years above, but not the year of this vehicle, 2006. A similar problem is reported in the C-class automobiles and may be more widespread than previously thought).

- Laguna Hills, CA, USA

problem #10

Sep 162012


  • 49,000 miles


The contact owns a 2006 Mercedes Benz ML350. While driving approximately 65 mph, the vehicle suddenly stalled without warning. The vehicle was towed to a fuel station and later taken to an independent mechanic for diagnostic testing. The mechanic advised the contact that the fuel sending unit would have to be replaced. There was a recall under NHTSA campaign id number: 08V303000 (electrical system). The contact called the manufacturer who advised that the VIN was not included in the recall. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 49,000.

- Fort Washington, MI, USA

problem #9

May 122011


  • 104,500 miles
Seat warmer malfunction, I was driving and had to pull over as my seat warmer created a fire inside my seat and burned 3 holes thru my seat and singed my clothing. Drivers side seat on left side of seat. Mercedes ml 350 2006

- North Dighton, MA, USA

problem #8

Jan 102011


  • 37,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Mercedes Benz ML350. The contact stated that the vehicle was parked when it ignited in small flames underneath the hood area; a bypasser extinguished the fire. The vehicle was towed to an authorized dealer and they informed that the fire originated from the fuse box which completely destroyed the wiring harness and caused other damages. The insurance company continued to investigate the failure. The vehicle had not been repaired. The failure mileage was 37,000. Updated 03/24/11 updated 1/4/11

- Staten Island, NY, USA

problem #7

Aug 202010

ML350 6-cyl

  • 64,000 miles
I was driving my 2006 Mercedes ml 350, with the seat warmer turned on. I noticed a smell of smoke coming from inside the vehicle, so I turned off the seat warmer and the smell went away. The next day I discovered that the seat warmer had burned a small hole in the seat covering on the left side of the driver's seat just above the driver's waist. When I took it to the dealer, they told me that the vehicle was out of warranty, and that it would cost $800-$1000 to correct the problem. The mechanic that I talked with 1-on-1 told me that they get this problem frequently. Since the day of the burn through, I have not used the seat warmer. I feel very fortunate that I noticed the smoke and shut the seat warmer down before the situation resulted in a fire or personal injury. Systems with these types of risks should have some kind of "extended" warranty coverage when they fail, to help cover the risk of fire or injury.

- Fort Wayne, IN, USA

problem #6

May 222010


  • 50,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Mercedes Benz ML350. While the contact was driving approximately 45 mph the engine shut off without warning. The contact coasted the vehicle across three lanes of traffic to the side of the road. The engine restarted for a period of two seconds and the automated windows began to operate without assistance. The horn sounded and the front and rear windshield wipers intermittentlyt activated. The "brake fluid low" warning indicator illuminated on the instrument panel. The contact smelled a burning odor and noticed white smoke coming from the rear door area. The driver and occupants exited the vehicle. The contact stated that the recommened level of brake fluid was in the reservoir. The vehicle was towed to an authorized dealer for diagnosis where the technician stated the failure was contributed to a build up of moisture from an excessive amount of liquid spilled underneath the front passenger seat or possibly the driver seat. The vehicle had not been repaired at the time of the complaint. The contact stated the failure was life threatening and that the interior carpet should be designed with a waterproof protector. The failure mileage was approximately 50,000.

- Winter Park, FL, USA

problem #5

Dec 282008


  • 52,051 miles
When I was driving my Mercedes Benz ML350, the malfunction light came on regarding the rear lift gate. Shortly thereafter, I smelled smoke and took the car to the dealer. The dealer informed me that there was some kind of liquid spill in the cargo area. The liquid that spilled got into the central processing unit, causing an electrical short in the system and the rear lift gate would not open. The vehicle cpu caught fire due to the spill. There are no warning messages posted in the cargo area, cautioning the owner that the car could catch on fire if there is a liquid spill in this area. Additionally, there is no information in the owners manual notifying of this potential disastrous event. Seeing that the cargo trunk is the most common place where liquids would be transported from the grocery store, Mercedes should properly protect that part of the vehicle from liquids if it contains computer circuitry and a spill can cause a fire. This should have been considered a safety hazard. As a result of this incident, the computer system, rear lift gate latch and body component will need to be replaced.

- Covina, CA, USA

problem #4

Sep 142008

ML350 6-cyl

  • 34,695 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Mercedes Benz ML350. While driving approximately 40 mph, the contact's daughter accidentally spilled a smoothie on the electrical component cover located on the passenger row floor. The liquid penetrated the electrical system and the instrumental panel. As a result, the steering and the ABS involuntary engage. The contact lost control of the vehicle, but was able to pull over to the side of the road. The dealer replaced the window motor and the computer at the cost of $1,384. The manufacturer filed a report and stated that the cover was designed in that manner. They would not assist. The current and failure mileages were 34,695. Updated 11/07/08. Updated 11/07/08.

- Moreland Hills, OH, USA

problem #3

Feb 012006

ML350 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 11,000 miles
: the contact stated there was one cup of water in a bag in the cargo area. The water spilled onto the central processing unit, causing an electrical short in the system and the rear lift gate would not open. The vehicle was repaired at the dealership.

- Millstone, NJ, USA

problem #2

Nov 272005

ML350 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 502 miles
While driving a brand new 2006 ml-350, the car suddenly shut down in the middle of the road. All the warning lights came on. It displayed the following message: Esp malfunction, headlight malfunction, speedtronic inoperative. Tried to restart the car, with no luck. Had to wait for 20 - 25 minutes before the car can be restarted. This happened 3 times to me. The car is currently sitting at a mb dealership for 2 days, and they are trying to figure oiut the problem. It seems that esp malfunction causes the new ml-350 to stop while driving, which is extremely dangerous. This is brand new car with only 500 miles.

- South Riding, VA, USA

problem #1

Oct 202005

ML350 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 4,481 miles
2006 Mercedes ml 350 - water got spilled on floor in passenger rear seat area; unknown to us, there is electrical circuitry - referred to as the frt sam in the invoice. This caused the entire car to shut down, and at one point the car stalled in traffic while being driven. Also caused a short in a power window that created a lot of smoke. There is a cup holder in the back seat, and that is where kids sit, but we did not know that a liquid spill in the rear seat could cause the entire electrical system and thus the car to shut down (even the transmission is electronic, and was inoperable). If the electrical circuits are on the floor, where almost all spills land, then it should be water tight, or in the alternative, the owners should know because if you are on a major highway and a child spills their drink in the back seat, you car could shut down completely.

- Cape Coral, FL, USA

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