If you own or ever owned a 2010-2016 Sprinter in the USA, you can claim between $880 and $3,500 as part of a class action emissions settlement. But you have to submit the claim by October 1, 2022.
Back in 2014 Volkswagen were in the news because of the “Dieselgate” scandal. Their diesel cars behaved differently when running emissions tests than they did in regular use. That allowed them to be more performant, but also more polluting, with CO2 and NOx levels way above the allowed limits.
There was massive outcry, and after initially denying they’d done anything wrong, Volkswagen ended up spending $7.3 Billion to fix the mess, which included buying back hundreds of thousands of cars in the US alone.
Mercedes were doing the same thing
What did NOT hit the news at that time was the fact that other manufacturers, including Mercedes, were doing the exact same thing. Mercedes co-operated with federal investigators and ended up with a slap-on-the-wrist fine and an agreement to fix any vehicles that were affected.
In the USA, a separate class action lawsuit ended up providing financial compensation to owners whose vehicles were affected. You can get a check for $3,515. That’s $3,290 from the Mercedes Class Action Settlement, and $225 from the Bosch Class Action Settlement.
Should you take the Class Action money?
The downside is you need to take your van in to a dealer to get the “Approved Emission Modification” work done. Now, we all want to do our bit for the environment, but there is a trade-off. We’ve had the work done, and subsequently we noticed marginally lower fuel economy after this modification, potentially less power, and significantly higher DEF fluid usage.
The work involved re-flashing the ECU, so a couple of the parameters we’d changed with a STAR system, like the seatbelt warning chime, were also reset to factory defaults. On the plus side, for what it’s worth the more recent ECU firmware now gives us a couple of graphical messages we didn’t have before on the dash display.
Who can claim?
If you currently own or lease a 4-cylinder Sprinter from model year 2014 to 2016, or a 6-cylinder Sprinter from model year 2010 to 2016, even if you bought it used, you can claim between $2,600 and $3,500
If you previously owned one of these vehicles but have subsequently sold it, you can still claim almost $880. Former owners had to claim by July 12, 2021
How to claim the Mercedes Class Action Settlement cash
You have until October 1 2022 to submit a claim. That means having the work done prior to that date. The paperwork wasn’t too bad, but you do need to have copies of your proof of ownership/leasing documentation. You can find the claim form online at https://www.mbbluetecsettlement.com.