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VinnievegaMBtech, Mercedes Mechanic
Category: Mercedes
Satisfied Customers: 227
Experience:  Over 20 yrs. of dealer experence, Master tech certified, Still Dealer Employed. School every year.
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1998 ML320: I just bought it used, with one key

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1998 ML320. I just bought it used, with one key. Went to dealer and they ordered me keys, then called and said, "no can do" Your car has had 8 keys and that is it. We''d have to replace your aam and all locks and keys.. Over $2000 for just a spare key. Help


Sorry to say But that is correct you only get 8 keys, more then likely there where a few key problems in the past with the previous owner, or owners. Not only do you get the AAM( all activities module ) but you can get up to 8 new keys, They also put in new door tumblers and an ignition tumbler. Sorry to say there is no other way around this because the AAM can only be put in by the Dealer. It has to be programed to your car and only the Dealer has the computer to do this. A this point you can call different dealers, (they do have different pricing from dealer to dealer ) maybe you can save a few hundred from one to the next.

Sorry for the bad news. Good luck with your new purchase other wise.

Agree except for the dealer part. A indenpendent shop with a SDS can also do this repair. You also could call Beckman Technologies in Durham NC and see if he han do anything with the AAM. I know he rebuilt~replared and cleared the DAS information from a W203 engine module for me not too long ago.

Wow, I didn't think that was possible and still have a running vehicle.

But what about the key, is there somone who remakes keys ? Because he still can't get a spare through Mercedes if they see that the AAM was not replaced ?


Customer: replied 9 years ago.
Thank you both, but, Why re-key the locks? Isn't that just dumb. There is nothing wrong with them, and the mechanical locks are an entirely independent system from the electronic coding. I don't mind changing the AAM, although I think it should be reprogrammable. Also, the key problems were reliability issues with the system, that has caused the car to run out of keys. Is there some recourse? Can I talk with anyone at Mercedes? A year ago I had a BMW and Porsche, and I lost my job. I had to sell both to survive. I did, and now have a new job. I sold my old ratty toyota (that I built the engine and tranny) and traded straight across for a reliable mercedes and this is my first experience with them. Really disappointing. I'm just looking for a more sane solution than changing everything. Why not change the spare tire too! OK, the electronic parts had limits. Give me a fair price on those parts and lets move on. Don't slap me in the face while doing it. That is the help I am requesting. I will pay $50 for someone who can break through the sillyness. Lee M. Jachter(NNN) NNN-NNNN
I've never figured the lock thing out to be quite frank. I know AAM and ME store start auth info. I've heard various storys regarding all the locks and AAM and ME, just the AAM and ME and the AAM, ME and the imobo coil around the ignition lock.

Like I said, maybe a call to Beckman. However, thats a good point about buying extra keys. All I know is its a stupid system that requires that much stuff when you run out of keys.
MBGuru, Mercedes Mechanic
Category: Mercedes
Satisfied Customers: 594
Experience: 25 years on MB, diagnostic tech and trainer.
MBGuru and 2 other Mercedes Specialists are ready to help you

I agree with both of you on how stupid the system really is.

But unfortunately thats the way Mercedes made it to be theft proof for that error of the vehicle.

You can call 1-800-for mercedes.

And see what they say.


Whats odd is the R170 has effectively the same DAS2Bx setup without AAM and does fine. <insert eyeroll for silly engineering here>
Customer: replied 9 years ago.
Would it be possible to re-program the aam and then just program the keys to it??? Could we get into such a plan with Mercedes approval?
You could all ways try, but i would not hold my breath on it.

New revelation, It might be possible for you to get a duplicate key through Mercedes. You have to go back to the dealer and ask to see if you can get a duplicate key of one of the first seven keys. first they have to check through your vehicle through the AAM to see if there was a perminate block on any of the first seven keys.

Down side, if there was a problem with the AAM's part the duplicate will not work, but if there was a problem with the key it self, A good chance you will have your spare.

Another Down side, they will not know if it will work until they have the key and try to program it, you will have to buy each key one at a time and hope the next one works, with any luck you will wind up with a spare. If not seven new Christmas tree ornimats.

You cannot get a duplicate for the key (#8) you already have, well not at this time, cause that will disable the key you have now. you cannot have two keys working on the same track.

This a slim chance but its all there is right now.

VinnievegaMBtech, Mercedes Mechanic
Category: Mercedes
Satisfied Customers: 227
Experience: Over 20 yrs. of dealer experence, Master tech certified, Still Dealer Employed. School every year.
VinnievegaMBtech and 2 other Mercedes Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 9 years ago.
Let me go talk to my dealer! You guys are the best! Now that's what I'm talking about!

you are more than welcome, i am glad to help and i hope it works out for you.

and thaanks again for useing J A.

Customer: replied 9 years ago.
Dealer said- No can do...but they will investigate why we need to change the lock cylinders...
I will keep after them about checking the aam for more valid keys. More to come!
Thats good keep on top of them.