By staff and news service reports
updated 5/11/2004 4:47:52 PM ET 2004-05-11T20:47:52

The Chrysler unit of DaimlerChrysler is recalling more than 326,000 pickup trucks and Durango sport utility vehicles because of two potential safety problems, federal regulators said Tuesday. Separately, the automaker's Mercedes-Benz unit said Tuesday it is recalling some 680,000 E- and SL-class vehicles worldwide to examine potential problems with a brake control system.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said the largest of the two Chrysler recalls involved 320,188 Durangos and Dakota pickups with front windshield wiper units that are susceptible to water intrusion, corrosion and eventual failure.

Vehicles affected include Durango SUVs from the 2002-2003 model years and 2002-2004 Dakotas, NHTSA said.

Separately, the agency said Chrysler was recalling 6,183 Dodge Ram 1500 and 2500 pickups because some were sold with erroneous vehicle certification labels.

The labels include “incorrect tire, wheel and recommended inflation pressure information” and fail to conform to federal motor vehicle safety standards, NHTSA said.

Automakers have been recalling an increasing number of vehicles in recent years and industry critics say Detroit’s traditional Big Three have been responsible for a disproportionate number of the cars and trucks affected.

Mercedes, meanwhile, said it is asking owners of the 680,000 E- and SL-class vehicles to visit their local service centers for a precautionary check of the so-called Sensotronic Brake Control system.

The company said it was aware of a “very small number” of complaints, but that braking was assured by the system’s additional hydraulic function.

The recall applies to E-class Limousines built after March 2002, T model cars built after March 2003 and SL-class vehicles made after October 2001, Mercedes said.

Spokesman Norbert Giesen said the recall affects about 680,000 vehicles worldwide, including 225,000 in Germany.

Reuters and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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