View Full Version : Reverse inoperative when cold

09-19-2013, 06:54 AM
I have a US 2012 3500 which I purchased new. From day one, I found I must warm up the van (run the engine in neutral) for 10 - 15 minutes before I can back out of my drive way which is up hill. What happens is that the transmission slips (less and less as it warms up). The Mercedes dealer has checked the fluid level and it is full. He says this is normal for some of the vans; but has no reason for it to happen, nor does he know of a fix. :idunno:

Does anyone else have this problem and is there a cure?

Aqua Puttana
09-19-2013, 02:45 PM
Does anyone else have this problem and is there a cure?
I do recall another post/thread with similar symptoms, but I don't think that it is a common problem.

Not that you asked...
It certainly doesn't seem like something that an owner should need to live with. If the issue cannot be resolved I would be checking on what is needed to pursue action under the Lemon Laws. There have been threads and discussion about that here.

Good luck. vic

09-19-2013, 06:31 PM
Please try backing down your driveway once and see if driving out the next day cold has the same effect. I suspect that the transmission oil is too low at that angle and not when reversed due to the placement of the uptake tube.
Adding 1/2 quart may also fix the problem, but mostly it's the angle/gravity/ position of the van that is the cause. Park uphill not downhill.

Could it be they do not know how to check the transmission oil when hot, and read the cold indicators?

09-19-2013, 06:40 PM
/\/\ What Nelson said. Try backing INTO your driveway at night so you can drive straigh out in the morning. It will reverse the angle of the tranny level.
let us know how it goes.

09-19-2013, 08:56 PM
Thanks for your responses; however, where the van ends up in the drive way is almost level. It also happens on level ground, but never in forward gear. The fluid level in the transmission was checked by my Mercedes dealer warm as I had just come in off the highway and they checked it before I went into the shop. :idunno:

09-19-2013, 09:02 PM
could have sworn I replied....been having odd problems w/ the site lately.

being that you are parking on level ground, the transmission is defective (if the fluid level is not the culprit). If MB won't do anything, start it, put it in reverse, when it doesn't go, call the tow truck and send it off to the dealer. Get a loaner and after 3 times get rid of the van. Sad that anyone would have to live with an issue like that. What if its an emergency trip to the hospital and it won't backup-someone could die-unacceptable!

09-19-2013, 09:54 PM
Being low on fluid or a malfunctioning solenoid in the transmission are the only things I could guess might do that.
I would leave the van overnight at the dealer where they have to backup to get it into the shop, or go to another dealer to check the fluid and resolve your issue.
It is not a fully functioning van with a safety issue, so insist they replace or fix it