A European-based source has acknowledged that there were reliability problems with some of Mercedes-Benz’s new in-car electronic features. The source claims the company has increased its testing staff and equipment to remedy the problems.

A European-based source has acknowledged that there were reliability problems with some of Mercedes-Benz’s new in-car electronic features.


The source claims the company has increased its testing staff and equipment to remedy the problems.

A top executive of Mercedes-Benz told that new features such as the COMAND satellite navigation system, the audio and phone system as well keyless entry and starting were not always reliable.

Hans-Heinrich Weingarten, an executive vice president at Mercedes-Benz, said the company had employed more electronics engineers and obtained more test equipment to deal with these problems.

About suggestions to pool the research and development efforts between the three manufacturers within the DaimlerChrysler group - Mercedes-Benz, Chrysler and Mitsubishi - Weingarten said it was not their idea to mix the brands.

Weingarten said the three companies would continue to conduct separate research and development projects on their respective products. He said it was too "complicated" to bring different development engineers together to develop electronic systems.

The main problem though was to simulate all the possibilities under which electronics in cars have to work since there were many factors that could influence the systems' reliability.

"We've made substantial investments in new test equipment," Weingarten said.

"We've built up our test systems to test for the effects of such things as temperature and stray emitted signals from other devices and we can simulate these in our development centre," Weingarten said.

Suppliers were under pressure as well to bring their systems and procedures up to the same level as Mercedes-Benz.

Weingarten said: "If there is a problem, our testing must show it up before production."

He also added that the new SLK is the first Mercedes-Benz to be 'virtually developed' with most of the early work done by computer. According to him, this reduced the time to produce the vehicle by almost a fifth.

Original article from Car