definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
20,433 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.

2003 Mercedes-Benz SL500 fuel system problems

fuel system problem

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2003 Mercedes-Benz SL500 Owner Comments

problem #3

Jan 012003

SL500 8-cyl

  • 18,000 miles


My Mercedes 2003 SL500 developed banging noise in the gas tank, in January 2010, having about 18,000 miles, prompting me to call the dealer. I was told that the baffle broke off and couldn't be fixed, advising me to replace the tank for $2,500. I argued that it was an obvious manufacturing defect considering the low miles and requested a free tank replacement, but I was refused on the grounds that the warranty expired. I couldn't believe what I heard, did some research and discovered that early models in 2003 and 2004, had similar tank problems and were replaced with a better design later. But, I was not informed about it. Furthermore, I found out that many other owners from that time had the same problem as I did. I waited for a while to see if Mercedes corporation would recall the early models, kept the gas tank full to avoid the annoying noise (the broken baffle cannot float and bang when the tank is full) and when I got convinced that Mercedes would not do anything for the victims I decided to file this complaint. It is a shame that a manufacturer wouldn't want to correct their own mistakes, considering a $100,000 price tag that I paid. What happened to that german quality and ethics? they certainly lost this customer for good.

- Las Vegas, NV, USA

problem #2

Feb 012011


  • miles
2003 SL500 Mercedes Benz. Consumer states noise inside gas tank when vehicle is moving

- Washington, DC, USA

problem #1

Apr 182008

SL500 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 43,300 miles
No incident. Was driving and as I pulled into my driveway, heard bumping sound from car. Asked Mercedes what it was, they said loose baffle in gas tank. Sounds like manufacturing defect. Checked online and found many others with same problem. It is a costly repair just outside of warranty period.

- Houston, TX, USA

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