2000 C250 TD Dash/Engine fault (w202)


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Feb 23, 2008
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Have a very irritating problem with my used white saloon automatic.

Dash occasionally turns into a light display (nonsensical flashing), while the tach and speedo start jumping around or just drop to zero. In extreme cases, the engine performance suffers, repeatedly jerking with a loss of power. Sometimes it just goes away, sometimes it continues (no discernible pattern... rain, sunny, night, day, etc.).

I have uploaded a 17 second YouTube video, showing the symptoms, here.

As I said, it's intermittent so I'm at a loss to diagnose.

It's a post-facelift w202 C250 TD (turbo diesel) Classic trim saloon (white) with automatic transmission. I don't think this model features a discrete OVP (my first guess). The engine compartment fuse box (driver's side) is closed, but lacks a gasket around it. No visible water in the box, but will replace the gasket once I find one.

Bought used with multiple owners, so no idea on what previous folks may have done to it. Runs great when not exhibiting this problem, but it's often and bad enough for me not to hold out hope for the future of this otherwise great car.

All help greatly appreciated! I'm trying a lot of folks to get to the bottom of this, so if I find the answer elsewhere, I'll post it here.


Forum Supporter
Authorised Forum Supporter
Oct 6, 2004
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Your Mercedes
Smart + others :)
wow, wish all customers would do this. :) Possible poor earth or dash itself.


Always remembered RIP
Mar 14, 2005
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Your Mercedes
2002 SL500, 216 CL500, all fully loaded
As STAR above (not the one in the sky as this one has his feet on the ground)

Yes this has to be within the cluster I think,,poor ground lead on connection on the plugs or PCB.

Give it a good thump on top to see if it will do it


Active Member
Oct 25, 2007
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Same problem

Sorry I can't help but I have exactly the same problem with my C250TD also white and post face-lift.
I have reported this problem on the forum before and tried all of the suggestions but without success. Changed brake-light switch, replaced the equivalent of the OVP. Checked for ingress of water. Checked battery voltage.
I usually rely on an indie ex Merc man but guess what? he has the same problem on his (250TD Estate) and cannot trace the fault.
In addition to the listed light display, my gearbox (auto) also starts to play up and bangs about, changing erratically. The engine also pulls back as if the ignition has been turned on and off.

Stopping the car and restarting mostly cures the symptoms temporarily, but they always return. It seems such a shame because the car is fine and runs well otherwise.
I would be eternally grateful if anyone can shed some light on possibilities.
Would dash connections /earthing really have an effect on the gearbox?

Thanks in advance


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