— Mercedes-Benz is recalling more than 61,500 of these vehicles equipped with 5-passenger seating because of problems using the seat belts.
- 2021 Mercedes-Benz AMG GLE53
- 2021 Mercedes-Benz AMG GLE63
- 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLE580
- 2020-2021 Mercedes-Benz GLE350
- 2020-2021 Mercedes-Benz GLE450
While buckling the seat belt, the middle seat belt buckle could be pushed down into the gap below the seat cushion. If the buckle can't be retrieved, the buckle latch won't work and the occupant won't be restrained.
Mercedes-Benz received reports from the field that indicated the seat belt buckles for the middle rear seats were found under the seat cushions. Nine reports said customers brought their vehicles to dealers in order to retrieve the seat belt buckles from under the seat cushions.
The automaker opened an investigation in January to learn the consequences, but COVID-19 slowed down the process.
Mercedes engineers finally determined that due to the double buckle configuration, the buckle for the middle seat occupant could end up under the seat in certain circumstances. The problem can occur if the middle seat occupant doesn't use two hands to latch the buckle or if the buckle is forcefully pushed downward under the seat cushion.
Mercedes says the number of reports remained low, but the automaker found dealer technicians were using different repair methods.
An occupant won't know there's a problem until it's too late.
The U.S. Mercedes recall includes 55,326 vehicles and in Canada more than 6,200 vehicles are recalled.
The recall instructs dealerships to use a specific repair procedure to secure the middle seat belt buckles when the recall begins December 29, 2020.
Owners may call 800-367-6372.