Lawsuit against Mercedes Benz N.A.(TELEAID) - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #1 of 109 (permalink) Old 05-16-2007, 10:10 AM Thread Starter
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Lightbulb Lawsuit against Mercedes Benz N.A.(TELEAID)

hello my name is Michael and I have an 04 CL55 AMG........I was just informed by teleaid that my service will no longer work after Dec. 31 2007 because the system if moving from analog to digital which was introduced in 2005. I was told by the local dealer here in Atlanta that it would be $1700 to upgrade to digital service. I contacted my attorney to explore the possibilities of a lawsuit. He was not sure until he poured over the contract, however he did state that this obviously effects thousand of automobiles equipped with teleaid that were manufactured prior to 2005. Essentially my case is this.......Mercedes Benz equipped all manufactured automobiles with a teleaid system which may or may not be called a safety feature(depending on who you speak to) and have arbitrarily decided to switch to a digital network and then charge $1500 for parts also manufactured by Mercedes to continue to access the teleaid system. What is stopping Mercedes from "upgrading" the SAT radio system to another service and saying you need to pay another X amount to continue to use the service. THIS IS NOT FAIR , we have all paid good money for our vehicles and for Mercedes to come back now as request $1500 in parts that probally cost a few hundred to manufacture, if that, is ridiculous! I have some free time on my hands now and have decided to investigate this further. If you have a similar complaint I would love to hear about it.................Michael
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post #2 of 109 (permalink) Old 05-16-2007, 10:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kompukard
have arbitrarily decided to switch to a digital network
Not really, analogue coverage is going. Its not anyones fault, all the cell towers are digital now. Keep in mind that Mercedes doesn't own cell towers. If the teleaid system is done via satellites it is the same story, Mercedes doesn't own the satellites and cannot do what they want all the time.

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Originally Posted by kompukard
Mercedes Benz equipped all manufactured automobiles with a teleaid system which may or may not be called a safety feature(depending on who you speak to) then charge $1500 for parts also manufactured by Mercedes to continue to access the teleaid system.
Well you are supposed to replace your airbag after 10 years. Mercedes, or any manufacture for that matter, doesn't pay for that. Also the part is probably not manufactured directly from Mercedes.


What has happen sucks, but the people in control of telecommunication run the show moreso than any company. As for the part, are you sure it is just the antenna and not the whole communication system. I can't say for sure because I didn't design the system, but the amount of things to replace could be a lot, a few, or one thing. I would try to get an antenna, and whatever else may be needed, from a 3rd party or junked car.
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post #3 of 109 (permalink) Old 05-16-2007, 11:00 AM Thread Starter
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I was told by the Merceds Tech that it is a new cell box that is digital......the old one stays and there are 3 or 4 plugs that are removed and inserted into the new digital box..........then it is hooked up to a computer and the information is loaded from the old to the new.......thats it
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post #4 of 109 (permalink) Old 05-16-2007, 12:42 PM
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I doubt there is an easy answer to this one, but here's my take.

As you noted, your car is a 2004 model. While it's certainly not an old car, the newer integrated technologies seem to age a lot more quickly than the vehicle itself. In other words, you probably aren't using the same mobile phone you used in 2004.

dahappybanana is correct regarding the analog mobile towers. They are being systematically phased out by the various providers, and Mercedes-Benz has no control over that. One might suspect that digital towers were less pervasive in 1999, when Tele-Aid was initially phased in. It's likely that Mercedes chose analog technology to better ensure coverage in rural areas. If it were a perfect world, Mercedes-Benz would replace the units without charge on cars under warranty, and offer the replacement service at cost on those which are out of warranty.

However, in reality, the absence of Tele-Aid does not directly affect the integrity, security, or stability of your CL55, especially considering that it was really an optional (i.e., subscription) feature all along. I think most people are going to argue that you're driving a $120,000 car and can probably afford the $1,700 upgrade. Such is the life of a Mercedes owner.
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post #5 of 109 (permalink) Old 05-16-2007, 01:16 PM
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Since it's a government mandate to switch from analog to digital, you ought to forget it. Poor baby.

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post #6 of 109 (permalink) Old 05-16-2007, 01:27 PM
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The integrated phone in my 1997 E420 is worthless because the cell technology has changed. Vehicles produced before 1960 have no seat belts. Should Mercedes-Benz be responsible for upgrading the technology in perpetuity? What would be their statute of limitations? 1 year? 2 years? 5 years?

The progress of technology means that somebody is going to be left behind every so often. This time it was your turn. Be glad there is a solution available and make a decision based on what the market determines is the cost for the solution.

Sorry I'm not more sympathetic, but when you scream IT'S NOT FAIR and immediately want to sue someone, don't expect a lot of sympathy.
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post #7 of 109 (permalink) Old 05-16-2007, 01:32 PM
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I remember when the cell phones went digital. The phone in my 1993 500SEL just stopped working. No warning, nothing! The phone was a $1500 option that just doesn't work anymore. Well, not exactly, I can get a recording from the Cingular customer service center that states "You are calling from an unauthorized number. Please hang up and call customer service for more information."

Sigh, I guess that even a Mercedes-Benz becomes obsolete after a while.

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post #8 of 109 (permalink) Old 05-16-2007, 01:46 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amcnair
The integrated phone in my 1997 E420 is worthless because the cell technology has changed. Vehicles produced before 1960 have no seat belts. Should Mercedes-Benz be responsible for upgrading the technology in perpetuity? What would be their statute of limitations? 1 year? 2 years? 5 years?

The progress of technology means that somebody is going to be left behind every so often. This time it was your turn. Be glad there is a solution available and make a decision based on what the market determines is the cost for the solution.

Sorry I'm not more sympathetic, but when you scream IT'S NOT FAIR and immediately want to sue someone, don't expect a lot of sympathy.

I say this is not fair because for Mercedes to charge $1700 to upgrade tele-aid, well you know it costs substantially less to manufacture as it is the same box that goes in all Mercedes since 2005 and on.......Mercedes sees fit to make a profit and play off of my fears that my Fiance who is with our first child would drive my car and be involved in a automobile accident.......Mercedes know that people who buy these cars have$1700 to spend and are taking advantage of us......it would have been "fair" to offer the upgrade at cost. As far as wanting to "immediately sue somebody" well I made no such statement.......if you mean to say that by me exercising my constitutional right to have access to the US court system if I feel I have been harmed, well then you should go back to 4th grade and take civics again because the last time I checked that was still a constitutional right.......wait unless our Congress passed another law last night without reading it that took this right away too.........plausible?
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post #9 of 109 (permalink) Old 05-16-2007, 01:55 PM Thread Starter
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Also I have found out that Mercedes has know for at least 3 years that 2008 would be the year for all digital service......that means there should have been some discloser that the vehicle you were buying had technology/service that would no longer work after 2007 and that you would have to spend $$$$$ to upgrade.
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post #10 of 109 (permalink) Old 05-16-2007, 01:58 PM
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If you think $1700 is a lot to upgrade Teleaid, wait until you find out what it's going to cost to sue Mercedes-Benz.

You may wish to weigh your costs. It may cost as much for your attorney to "determine" whether to go forward, as it does to do the upgrade.

If you do decide to proceed, and I understand your goal, you'd like Mercedes-Benz to provide free upgrades to every Teleaid customer in the US (or possibly worldwide). The first problem I see with your suit is that you have a year to year agreement to purchase Teleaid services from Mercedes-Benz. By definition, a year to year contract has a terminus. It expires at the end of that year. Basically, it's an out for either party at that time. If I lease a home to someone, I am under no obligation to continue to offer housing services after the agreement terminates. Regarding your "equipment costs" argument; I believe every car comes equipped with Teleaid and you would have been charged the same for the vehicle whether the product was used or not. Basically, you're charged to use the "service".

I would hate to attempt to sue Mercedes-Benz and loose. Paying their legal costs may be painful.
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