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Radio Navigation Display Replacement
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

Radio Navigation Display Replacement

Kerry Jonsson

Time:

3 hours3 hrs

Tab:

$750

Talent:

***

Tools:

T30 Torx driver, plastic door panel removal tool

Applicable Models:

Mercedes-Benz W211 (2003-09)

Parts Required:

Radio/navigation unit

Hot Tip:

When using a plastic prying tool protect the surface with a rag

Performance Gain:

Replace non-functioning radio

Complementary Modification:

Replace damaged wood grain panels while you have them off.

Mercedes Benz vehicles are technologically advanced automobiles. A good example of this is the radio. There is the base radio and the optional COMMAND radio with a built in navigation screen. This system uses what is called a MOST bus. This MOST (Media Oriented System Transport) is how the information is shared from one control unit to another. Media files such as navigation images and music files are large and a lot of information needs to be moved around quickly for seamless operation. This network uses pulses of light over a fiber-optic network to send and receive information. This has good points and bad points. A good point is because it is a light signal it is not affected by radio frequency interference (RFI) and the small magnetic field created as current runs through the wiring of the car. On the other hand if a cable is damaged special tools are required to fix it or the entire cable needs to be replaced. The radio is the main control unit to control the fiber-optic network and if something is wrong with the radio nothing will function. In this tech article we will go over all the steps to remove and/or replace your radio.

This picture illustrates the center console of the dashboard by the shifter.
Figure 1

This picture illustrates the center console of the dashboard by the shifter. Open the ashtray door.

Using your fingers, reach underneath the front of the shifter bezel and pull upward until you have unclipped it from the center console.
Figure 2

Using your fingers, reach underneath the front of the shifter bezel and pull upward until you have unclipped it from the center console.

Slide the shifter bezel forward to release it from the center console.
Figure 3

Slide the shifter bezel forward to release it from the center console.

Lift up the shifter bezel to expose the base of the shifter knob.
Figure 4

Lift up the shifter bezel to expose the base of the shifter knob. Twist the shifter knob retainer clockwise to loosen it and pull it downward.

Pull upward on the shift knob and move both the shifter knob and the shifter bezel off to the side of the center console.
Figure 5

Pull upward on the shift knob and move both the shifter knob and the shifter bezel off to the side of the center console.

Lift up on the two corners of the ash tray (green arrows) to unclip it from the center console.
Figure 6

Lift up on the two corners of the ash tray (green arrows) to unclip it from the center console.

Close the ash tray door and lift the ash tray out of its opening.
Figure 7

Close the ash tray door and lift the ash tray out of its opening. You can set the parking brake, turn on the ignition key, apply the brake pedal and move the shifter into one of the lower gears to give you more room if you like but it is not necessary.

Rotate the ash tray to expose the cigarette lighter electrical connector.
Figure 8

Rotate the ash tray to expose the cigarette lighter electrical connector. Unplug the connector by pulling it towards you.

At the bottom of the switch center control unit remove one of the two T20 fasteners.
Figure 9

At the bottom of the switch center control unit remove one of the two T20 fasteners. The vehicle may have a multiple CD changer built into the switch center control unit as we havePictured here on our car. It will also be removed with the switch center control unit.

Remove the other T20 fastener on the other side.
Figure 10

Remove the other T20 fastener on the other side.

This picture illustrates under the switch center control unit/CD Changer.
Figure 11

This picture illustrates under the switch center control unit/CD Changer. Push the locking tab (green arrow) of the fiber optic connector and pull the connector in the direction of the blue arrow to unplug it.

Unplug the three wire connector by squeezing the connector and pulling it directly towards you.
Figure 12

Unplug the three wire connector by squeezing the connector and pulling it directly towards you.

Pull out the switch center control unit/CD changer to expose the electrical connector.
Figure 13

Pull out the switch center control unit/CD changer to expose the electrical connector. You do not have to remove the wood trim strip along the top of the radio to do this job. I have done so for another tech article.

This picture illustrates the back of the switch center control unit/CD Changer.
Figure 14

This picture illustrates the back of the switch center control unit/CD Changer. Unplug the electrical connector by squeezing both sides of the electrical connector and pulling them apart or you can simply set the unit off to the side being careful not to scratch the center control trim.

At the base of the radio/navigation unit turn the mounting fastener counter clockwise.
Figure 15

At the base of the radio/navigation unit turn the mounting fastener counter clockwise. These fasteners will not come out of their mount. When you loosen these fasteners they unlock a latch built into the radio which forms the mount. Loosen the fasteners all the way until you can no longer turn them counter clockwise.

Fully loosen the other fastener for the radio/navigation unit until you can turn it counter clockwise.
Figure 16

Fully loosen the other fastener for the radio/navigation unit until you can turn it counter clockwise.

Slide the radio/navigation unit toward you to expose the electrical and fiber-optic connectors at the back of the unit.
Figure 17

Slide the radio/navigation unit toward you to expose the electrical and fiber-optic connectors at the back of the unit.

Unplug the electrical connector (green arrow) by squeezing the locking tab and pulling it in the direction of the blue arrow.
Figure 18

Unplug the electrical connector (green arrow) by squeezing the locking tab and pulling it in the direction of the blue arrow.

To unplug the fiber optic connector, push down on the locking tab (green arrow) and pull it in the direction of the blue arrow.
Figure 19

To unplug the fiber optic connector, push down on the locking tab (green arrow) and pull it in the direction of the blue arrow. Installation is the reverse of the removal procedure. Plug in the fiber optic and electrical connectors into the back of the radio/navigation unit. Twist the mounting fasteners clockwise until both can no longer be rotated. Plug the single electrical connector at the back of the switch center control unit/CD Changer and slide the unit into place. Plug in both the fiber optic connector and three wire electrical under the switch center control unit/CD Changer and install the two fasteners at the bottom. Plug in the electrical connector for the cigarette lighter, fit the ash tray into its opening and snap it onto place. Place the shifter knob and shifter bezel on the shifter shaft and twist the shift knob retainer clockwise while pushing slightly upward to tighten it. Slide the back of the shifter bezel into place and push down of the front of it to seat it into the center console and youÂ're done. Turn on the ignition key and verify the radio/navigation unit and CD changers are working.

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Comments and Suggestions:
MHD Comments: Would the instruction be the same for removing the shift knob for the keyless go option models?
November 2, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: On what model and year? - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Phil Comments: Removing the fiber optic connector on a 2003 W211 MB E320 requires the removal of a metal tab assembly by prying on two ends of the tab to get it off. This instruction should be clarified before someone gets a serious migraine looking for the tab release on the side.
October 2, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Can you share a photo? Our subject vehicle had a plastic tab on the connector, that was all that had to be released. We will be glad to add it to the article. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Phil Comments: The shift knob retainer on a 2003 MB E320 W211 turns counter-closkwise to remove it! The Pelican Part instruction should be revised to avoid damaging the assembly if a small wrench is used versus manually trying to get things loose.
October 2, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I think the article is referring to direction when viewed from above. Which would be reversed from what you are stating.

Do not use a wrench, the lock is plastic and can break. - Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Phil Comments: The shift knob retainer on my W211 does not want to turn clockwise for removal and then move down for shift knob removal. Is more detail needed?
September 30, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: No, it may be jammed from age. - Nick at Pelican Parts  

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