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Mercedes-Benz recalling 400,000 vehicles in the UK over airbag issue

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Mercedes-Benz is recalling 400,000 vehicles in the UK over a potential airbag safety issue affecting its best-selling executive and family models.

The models affected include certain A, B, C, and E-Class models, and CLA, GLA and GLC vehicles, made between November 2011 and July 2017.

Mercedes said that there have been 30 reported cases worldwide of airbags deploying prematurely as a result of the problem – there have been no cases of airbags being prematurely deployed in the UK.

Mercedes is addressing the issue by replacing a clock spring in the steering column – it only takes a few hours to complete the fix.

A spokesperson for the German automaker told the BBC that the issue only affected certain cars in “rare circumstances”.

“If the steering column module clock spring is broken and the wiring components are not sufficiently earthed, this could lead to an electrostatic discharge which could inadvertently deploy the driver’s airbag,” the spokesperson said.

“In rare circumstances, if the clock spring is broken and the wiring components are not sufficiently earthed this could lead to an electrostatic discharge which could inadvertently deploy the driver’s airbag.”

“Cars are safe to drive under normal operating conditions.

“If the airbag warning light comes on then customers should call Mercedes-Benz Roadside Assistance (00800 1777 7777), or contact their nearest retailer.”

Customers will be notified by the company  ‘should their car be one of those affected by the recall’.

The automaker also stressed that the issue is not related to the exploding Takata airbag scandal.