How to repair Benz ESL/ ELV Steering lock?

What is ESL?

ESL is electronic steering lock. If the ESL not work properly, it comes the dashboard light do not turn on, the steering wheel can’t be unlocked, the car won’t start, or other auto parts do not response whenswitch on the ignition. It happens a lot on Mercedes /Benz 212, 204, 207,E series and C series from year 2006 to 2014 , such as C180, C200, E200, E260, E300, E350, GLK300 and GLK350.

Why ESL doesn’t work?

There are two general cause: the motor of steering lock is damaged, or the NEC chip inside is locked. (in most cases, the motor is damaged)

How to confirm the cause is motor or NEC Chip?

Use VVDI MB Tool to connect OBD, enter the software and check the option ESL, if message shows the ESL works properly, so the cause is motor, need to change a new one, if not, the cause is NEC chip or other things of ELS, need to change the ELS or unlock the NEC chip.

Replace the motor

Step 1: Disassemble the ELV from steering assembly, since the steering lock is in the locked state when most of the problems occur, the lock can’t be taken after removing the screw, need to make a small hole in the cover, then insert the screwdriver into it and rotate the gear to the open position to remove the ELV.




Step 2: Four fixed pins on the lock, lift the pin with special tools. We must open them carefully and try to make the mechanical accessories in right position.

Step 3: After opening the lock, remove the pcb board, will see the motor, replace a new one, then install the lock to steering assembly.



Unlock the NEC chip

Get the pcb board as same as replace the motor, take the NEC chip from the board and put the board to ELV adapter, use the VVDI MB Tool to repair, after successfully repair, need to program with VVDI MB Tool.


Replace Benz ELV Emulator


If replace a motor and unlock NEC chip is a tough work, use the ELV emulator which an alternative to the original ELV. If the ELV damaged, don’t have to repair, just replace the ELV emulator, then program it with VVDI MB Tool and insert the key to activate.



How to program ELV emulator with VVDI MB Tool?


Erase EIS, then re-write EIS and personalize ESL, finally ESL is synchronized. Note: if you not erase ESL at first, but only personalize ESL, the ESL won't be synchronized.  

To erase EIS, both Key password and Erase password are required. 

1) For the key password, you can get it by adding keys. 

2) For the Erase password, it can be automatically get out by VVDI MB tool at 90% percent success rate, if no success, email us the EIS data for help. 

After input the two passwords, click "Save EIS data" then "Erase EIS"

Now the EIS is full new


Load EIS data

Tick "IR" to write EIS data and "OBD" to write VIN.

Step3. Click "Personalize W204 ESL" 


Now, the options "Initialized", "TP Cleared" and "Personalized" are ticked, except "Activated"  

Insert the original car key then EIS and ESL is in "Activated" status. 

Finally renew ESL with success.