What Are Mercedes MB-Tex Problems? (Explained)

The term MB-Tex upholstery shouldn’t be new to you if you have recently bought or test driven a new Mercedes-Benz.

This is a material that the Mercedes brand has decided to incorporate into its most recent vehicles ranging from the GLE-Class to the CLA-Class.

Mercedes isn’t the only car brand to come up with their own material, Subaru has done it and so have other car brands.

Though Mercedes MB-Tex wasn’t introduced to replace leather interiors, this material was created to be a more superior option.

If you have looked into the features of MB-Tex, you will realize it doesn’t have some of the cons leather and cloth interiors have, making it a great option.

However, similar to other materials, Mercedes MB-Tex isn’t without flaws. And this is our main focus today.

Mercedes MB-Tex problems

What are Some of Mercedes MB-Tex Problems?

  • Bleeding Seats

Back in 2015 when the MB-Tex technology was gaining technology in the Mercedes market, many buyers raised complaints that the MB-Tex upholstery was producing an oily residue which made the seats look like they are bleeding.

Despite Mercedes issuing a Technical Service Bulletin (TSB) to its dealers asking them to fix this issue, MB-Tex technology upholstery continued to produce oily residue in some parts of the car such as the center armrest and rear bolsters.

This occurred in Mercedes cars that were serviced following the bulleting issued by Mercedes.

This MB-Tex problem is reported to be very common in the C-Class series.

We came to this conclusion because most Mercedes owners who have made this complaint are the ones who own the C-class.

The bleeding seat issue mostly occurs in cars that have been sitting in the cold and the vehicle happens to be heated up quickly.

When Mercedes was made aware of this issue, they did not ignore the complaints and that’s why they issued a statement recalling their vehicles exhibiting this problem to be serviced by the dealers.

Unfortunately, the problem was never remedied and some car owners experience the same issue to date.

Bleeding seats haven’t caused any injuries so far, and the oily substance can be washed off with water and soap.

However, this is a problem car owner shouldn’t be subjected to considering the fact that they are driving a luxurious vehicle from one of the most renowned car brands in the industry.

The bleeding of MB-Tex upholstery is a problem that has only been spotted with Mercedes.

Other brands that are at the same level as Mercedes such as BMW and Lexus have zero complaints associated with the production of an oily substance from the seats.

This being the main problem that affects the Mercedes MB-Tex technology, we had to do further research and find out more about it.

The production of the oily substance when the material is exposed to heat is caused by a plasticizer, an ingredient used to soften vinyl.

This additive leaches out of the MB-Tex upholstery when there is some heat in the car and when it cools down, it creates a white substance that stains the side of your car seats.

Please note that the appearance of these stains changes depending on the temperature in the vehicle.

As an owner of a Mercedes with MB-Tex technology that bleeds, there is nothing much you can do to fix this issue. At the moment, we just have to wait for Mercedes to formulate a resolution that will fix this problem once and for all.

However, if you are looking for a temporary fix, clean it off with water and soap whenever you see the oily residue. Replacing the seat covers may be very expensive, so, this isn’t something we would fully recommend.

It is also important to have a talk with your dealer and ask if they can look into the problem and perform repairs.

Genuine Mercedes dealers have access to a repair kit that they can use to replace the bleeding MB-Tex technology.

Such kits are always in demand and you may have to wait a while for the dealer to make an order and have it shipped to their address.

For those who already own Mercedes cars that have bleeding seats, we understand how frustrated you may be especially considering the money you paid for it. Reach out to your dealer and find out how you can fix this issue.

  • Ripped MB-Tex Upholstery

According to Mercedes, they claim that their MB-Tex is of high quality and it’s very durable. However, we all know that no material is 100% durable.

It will wear, crack and rip depending on how frequently you use it. Another common problem with Mercedes MB-Tex is how the material rips easily especially if it has dried up.

All materials dry and harden when exposed to the sun’s UV rays, even MB-Tex. Similar to other materials, when the MB-Tex dries, it loses its strength and can therefore rip easily.

Should you have a sharp object in your back pocket and seat on the MB-Tex, slight movement may cause it to rip easily.

Unlike the above problem where Mercedes is to blame, this one is the fault of the car owner. Irrespective of the material you have in your car interior, you must learn how to take care of it.

Quite often, car owners with leather interiors are the only ones who are usually cautious with interior care and maintenance. Most people with vinyl and other materials such as MB-Tex think that their interior is bulletproof.

MB-Tex should be cleaned regularly if you want to prevent wear and tear. Stains and dirt eat through MB-Tex and with time, you may find it tearing easily. Forcing you to spend more money on repairs.

Even though MB-Tex can’t last forever, there are a couple of things you can do to make it last for longer.

Invest in a special product that will protect the material from wear and UV damage. Auto armor is a great example.

The other thing you should do is clean it regularly and keep the sun from your dashboard and upholstery.

You can achieve this by tinting the windows or buying windscreen shades. If it’s already ripped, find an expert who can repair or replace it for you.

What is Mercedes MB-Tex Upholstery?

The above are the two main problems that affect the Mercedes MB-Tex upholstery. This is a clear indication of how superior this material is.

Because when compared to other materials, MB-Tex is only stronger but it looks better and requires minimal maintenance.

To fully understand the problems with this material, we must look more into what it is and what it’s made of. MB-Tex is the creation of Mercedes and it is a material that is made from vinyl.

Though it doesn’t contain leather, MB-Tex looks exactly like leather and if you are not very careful, you may end up mistaking it for genuine leather.

Because it isn’t obtained from cowhides, MB-Tex is very affordable and requires minimal maintenance, unlike its counterpart.

Just because MB-Tex isn’t made up of leather, this doesn’t mean that it is an inferior material to have in your car’s interior.

You will be surprised at how luxurious MB-Tex looks in a car’s interior. It has a rich and deep finish that is available in various colors.

MB-Tex was created for car owners that prefer vinyl to cloth and leather. If you are tired of the regular interior upholstery, you could give MB-Tex a try.

Will MB-Tex Damage If Not Cleaned Regularly?

Though it requires minimal care and is very easy to clean, MB-Tex should not be neglected. It is funny how some car owners think that as long as their interiors don’t have leather, they don’t have to clean them.

To ensure MB-Tex lasts long, you will need a good vinyl cleaner which you should use regularly. You can get one at your nearest auto-store.

How Durable is MB-Tex?

After reading the above problems associated with Mercedes MB-Tex, you may be considering not getting this interior option when buying your next car.

However, what you need to know is that MB-Tex is durable. As a matter of fact, it is one of the most durable materials you can ever have in your car interior.

It can last for up to a decade looking as good as new provided you take proper care of it.

Are There Drawbacks of an MB-Tex Interior?

All car interior materials have disadvantages. You need to take note of this as you weigh out your options. MB-Tex is a great material to have in your car.

It looks good, it is durable and easy to maintain. However, this material isn’t available in many colors.

So, there is a huge chance that you may not get that unique interior color you are after. Secondly, it lacks that unique smell that is associated with leather.

As a driver, you need to evaluate the pros and cons so that you can determine if this is the right material to have in your car interior.

The bleeding issue is the biggest concern with the MB-Tex. As you shop for a Mercedes, you should confirm with the dealer if the seats are going to bleed. You can even test the car before buying it.