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Discussion Starter #1
I have about 600 miles on a 2004 ML350.

The operation of the gas pedal is not smooth. It's a bit hard to describe but it has a slight stickyness to it that make it a pain to drive smoothly.

The dealership stretched the return spring at the top end of the cable but it didn't do anything to solve the problem. I have sprayed silicon lubricant on the hinges of the gas pedal but that did nothing.

Any advice on how to solve this problem is greatly appreciated. As it is now I dread driving this expensive little truck.
 

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I have two distinct ideas as to what is causing your condition. The first is that there is something physically hindering free operation of the gas pedal. This would be most easily corrected by replacing the assembly. It is also possible that if this is the case, the cable that operates the throttle linkage is binding a bit somewhere along the line. My first suggestion would be to drive the vehicle normally for a bit. New parts need to get some use to break them in properly. My second train of thought centers around the throttle-by-wire feature. It is possible that the computer systems governing electronic throttle may have not yet adapted to your driving conditions. I would suggest if the problem does not seem better in another 500 or so miles, have the engine and transmission adaptations looked at to see if they are responding normally to driver input. It may be necessary to reset the adaptation value and let it relearn from scratch. If it is something electronic it will only be accentuated if there are multiple drivers with different driving styles. This is what I can offer you without actually feeling or experiencing the "catchiness" you describe. I would be interested to find out what the resolution to this problem is.
 

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Thanks for your very useful comments. I think your advice to let a little time and use 'wear' in the throttle control components is good advice.

That's also very interesting about the computer adapting to a driving style. I was unaware of this.

Thanks again. I will post again as we progress.
 

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Update at 1200 miles. The throttle still 'catchy' and annoying. Difficult to apply power as smooth as you would like. It's not something you feel or notice if you were to just jump in and pump the pedal a few times, it becomes apparent when driving.

Before starting the engine and after shutdown I pump the hell out of the throttle to attempt to wear it in.

A friend with a 1000 miles on his 2004 ML350 finds the exact same problem. The service department at MB says "that's just the way it is". I am now convinced it is just poor engineering. Very disappointing.

I own three other late model vehicles, 2 BMW's and 1 Nissan and those boys all know how to make a smooth throttle linkage.
 

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I'm sorry it hasn't gotten that much better yet. After that amount of mileage, it should move freely and easily. Have the service department compare it directly to an identical vehicle. There are a few negative things one could say about the ML, but this issue you're having with it is a manufacturing flaw rather than a design flaw. It should move smoothly and freely. Maybe have the dealership's shop foreman go for a test drive with you to verify the problem.
 

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Happy to report the problem has been solved.

After a couple service visits I asked them to replace the throttle cable. They replaced the throttle cable and the gas pedal assembly. Apparently this problem isn't unknown but for some reason they were reluctant to fix it the first time.

Nice smooth, easy to drive throttle now. I can finally look forward to driving the ML now.

Thanks for your all your help.
 

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Was that fix under warranty? If not, what was the cost and could I perform the swapout myself?

I have a 1998 with 120K and the throttle still sticks.
 

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Was that fix under warranty? If not, what was the cost and could I perform the swapout myself?

I have a 1998 with 120K and the throttle still sticks.
Well, I'd imagine your warranty is long over if you've got a 98.

Now before replacing the assembly, some have been able to clean it and get positive results... perhaps you could try that.
 
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