2021 Mercedes Models Dashcam Availability Details!

(UPDATED ON 10/14/2020)

Since the introduction of the MBUX (Mercedes-Benz User Experience) entertainment systems for the many different 2020 Mercedes-Benz models, a lot of owners found the very puzzling “Dashcam” control inside their car, while the actual dashcam (Video Recording Option) was nowhere to be found! And the obvious question arose: “Where is the dashcam of my Mercedes and how do I use it?”

Mercedes Dashcam
Mercedes Dashcam!

Well, while we can only speculate here at MBZMaster.com, it looks like the dashcam was in hiding due to some unexplained legal issues. While it’s perfectly legal to use a dash cam inside the vehicle in the United States, it actually carries a very little weight in the court of law. There are too many Speilbergs, Tarantinos and whole lot of small -time video producers who can easily alter your dash cam footage into something completely different than what really happened, and then go figure!

However at the same time, the video recording inside your car can be helpful if it aligns with all other aspects of the legal case! Sometimes the recording can be useful for some other needs than just the recording of an actual accident, but sometimes not. Make sure NOT to get a dash cam if, for example, you are going to cheat on your wife or maybe husband! Definitely that video recording is not going to help you at all!

So starting with some 2021 models, Mercedes will roll out the Dashcam as an optional equipment. For people who don’t know, Dashcam stands for: “Dashboard Camera”, which you can use to video record your driving, and what’s going on around you. Some initial models to include the Dashcam – (21U) option are 2021 Mercedes E, A, CLA, CLS, GLA, GLC, GLS, GLB-Classes and GLE SUV. Probably some other models will follow in 2022.

At the time of the writing of this article, we assume that in order to get this Dashcam, you would need the “Augmented Video” for Navigation – (U19) option as a requirement. Simply because Augmented Video already incorporates the front camera, and it would be crazy not to use it! Then the footage can be saved apparently either via an internal hard drive (HDD) or simply via an external USB stick.

What is Mercedes Augmented Video for Navigation?

Instead of using the simple map on the Navigation display like every other car, MBUX uses this feature to display the real road in front of you, by using the front dashcam camera. Then MBUX uses it’s Navigation animation overlay layer to display the guidance! How cool is that? You can watch the demo of Augmented Video for Mercedes Navigation here.

Now the fun part begins here: In order to get “Augmented Video” you must get “Multimedia Package” – (DA5), which is part of it. And in order to get the Multimedia Package, you have to get the “Premium Package” – (DP1) for a reason that you need to have two 10.25″ display screens. Thank you Mercedes – for being so complicated!

So when someone tells you that the Mercedes Dashcam is just about $200 bucks, let’s try to sum everything up and see the reality:

  • Mercedes Dashcam (21U) -$200;
  • Multimedia Package (DA5) – $1,150;
  • Augmented Video for Navigation (U19) – included;
  • Premium Package (DP1) – $1,700
  • The TOTAL you just climbed into – $3,050 (!)

At that point you have to ask yourself 2 questions:

  • Do I really need a $3k dash cam?
  • Can I find about 10 times less expensive one?

And the answer is: if you are getting Multimedia or Premium package anyway – then it makes sense. Otherwise, you should be able to find any aftermarket dash cam for a lot less, unless money is not an object!

What about the previous Mercedes models?

We can not say for sure at this time, but we can logically assume that any previous Mercedes-Benz vehicles that have been already equipped with “Augmented Video” (U19) option – will be retrofittable to obtain the Dashcam video recording functionality. We’ll post updates as soon as we know! And also don’t forget that every Mercedes already comes with the Event Data Recorder, and you can watch our video about it right here: in-vehicle Event Data Recorder (EDR) – The Dreaded Black Box.

30 Replies to “2021 Mercedes Models Dashcam Availability Details!”

  1. I have a Mercedes Benz b200 with a dash cam fitted by Mercedes they will not switch it on is there any way I can switch it on myself it is even in my manual the DashCam I have augmented navigation fitted with the premium plus package

    1. Depending on the country where you live, it may not be approved if it has any legal issues. In U.S., most 2021 models will have Dashcam as an option, because all the legal issues have been finalized. But once it is resolved and approved, then it can be activated at any MB dealership service department.

      1. I live in England and it’s not illegal here as the police ask for dash cam footage regular Mercedes-Benz say I have a dash cam fitted but will not activate it is there anyway I can get it switched on or buy any software that will plug into the OBD2 connector to switching on myself or is it possible to get into the mbux system and do it myself

        1. It’s not illegal to have a dashcam in U.S. either, but I guess they had some issue with the Privacy part of MB system which is cleared by now. Original (non-functioning) dashcam is not possible to activate just yet, but it may change pretty soon. We will update our website as soon as it happens, because there was a lot of inquiries on that subject.

  2. I have a new 2019 A250 hatch with ALL the packages, cameras and hardware etc required for Dash Cam functionality .. and yet no Dash Cam App. The only feature I DON’T have is the integrated garage door opener or the Burmister Audio system
    We called MB Canada who suggested “… would need to be purchased from the dealership… a system that will allow for a Dash Cam”
    So I’m a tad confused… or lets suggest perhaps MB Canada might be the ones whom are confused about the current state of my car.
    I’m pretty sure I just need an APP.. as I already even purchased the USB-C SSD drive I plan to use for the recordings… as mentioned in my vehicle manual… YES, I read it 😉 I SURE hope MB Can. rolls out the Dash Cam App as an OTA update….

    1. MB Canada suggestion is incompetent, unless it’s really different from MB USA. Your car maybe equipped with the Dashcam, but certainly doesn’t have a legal license to use it. Only 2021 models will have the license to use Dashcam app. However, my guess is if you have a previous MB model year, equipped with MBUX system and Augmented Reality option that I’ve shown in this video, then it should be possible to use the Dashcam by purchasing this updated app. As of today, it’s not possible yet. I will post an update as soon as it will become possible. You can see our updates by hitting LIKE on the top of our Facebook Fan page.

      1. Thanks! .. and I should clarify … I was dealing with too many numbers in my head the other day when I posted. My A250 is a 2020 model-year actually, just picked it up 2 weeks ago…not a 2019.. build date however was 08/19. Yeah a pretty silly response from MB Can considering all I’m missing is an App… that’s it. I’m going to repeatedly twist arms at my local MB dealer to see what I can get, and when. Regards M

  3. I have a 9/20 build 2021 GLE 63 S and I had my dealer research it in depth. There is nothing they can do on their end software wise to activate the dash cam right now. They contacted Merc and they gave a standard answer of it will be available in the configurator for the 2021 GLE which basically does nothing for me. They had no information on adding one to an existing model. Mercedes is making a huge mistake not making this a purchasable option for owners who have the hardware. for future availability.

    1. It looks like Dashcam is an available option on the 2021 GLE SUV, but not on the GLE Coupe. Do you have GLE – SUV or Coupe? Also, is your car equipped with Augmented Reality?

      1. SUV. We looked at the 2021 GLE AMG SUV order screen and 21U is still not listed as one of the options as of 3 weeks ago. I have MBUX with Augmented Reality. You can clearly see the physical Dashcam and I can go into the settings and it says deactivated. I was going to install a Blackvue but the dealer told me to keep waiting and hopefully they’ll be a software patch but as of now there is nothing out there from Mercedes on activating existing ones. The only thing I can think is the AMGs were released before the regular 2021 GLEs which still hadn’t hit lots as of 3 weeks ago.

        1. Also. I did not think to have him look at a 2021 non-AMG GLE SUV when we were on the computer. I assume 2021s are at least in the order queue by now

        2. Interestingly, GLE AMG models still don’t have a Dashcam option while the regular GLE’s already have it. I’m pretty sure it will become available in the near future since you already have Augmented Reality. Everything slowed down because of Covid. I’ll post the news as soon as it becomes available. Hit LIKE on our Facebook Fan Page to be notified.

  4. I am picking up a 2021 GLC tomorrow (Mercedes was holding it in the dock until this week because they didn’t want to release it too early). We actually ordered it as a 2020 model but cuz COVID it was delayed and then pushed to a 2021 model. I noticed this option in the configurator now and have asked about enabling it but am not getting clear answers just yet. Initially they indicated another camera would be needed but this doesn’t seem to make sense if there already is a camera in the packages we are getting (which are basically every option available). This situation is very strange.

    1. The dashcam has to be added at the time of your order, so add this option, or find one which is already equipped with it. One of the requirements, as I described in this video is Mercedes Augmented Reality. As of right now, there is no update available to be installed afterward. But as I described in this article, MB is working on making it available via over-the-air app installation. We will post an update as soon as it happens. You can stay updated with our updates at our Facebook Fan Page if click on the upper LIKE of the page.

      1. Yes I understood the MB Augmented reality is required. We ordered this already. We just didn’t have the dashcam option. I am already picking up the car tomorrow. It’s not the end of the world if we can’t get the dashcam capability, but based on what I’ve read here, it seems like we have all of the pieces to have the dashcam support, just not the software. However, the dealer seems to be indicating we need this I think: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SpinGJWAHrY. But your article seems to indicate that this isn’t necessary if we have all the other options (Multimedia Package (DA5), Augmented Video for Navigation (U19), Premium Package (DP1)). We have all of these. So is the dashcam a software or hardware upgrade after that?

        1. You already have all the hardware, so it’s software. The video is for older non-U.S. cars. I’ll post an update whenever this upgrade will be possible, so sty tuned!

          1. I wrote to MBUSA after picking up my car and asked about whether I have the hardware for the dashcam. This was their response:

            “A review of our records indicate this vehicle is not equipped with the dashcam feature (option 21U). As this option requires assembly at the factory, it unfortunately cannot be added once the vehicle has been built.”

            Doesn’t sound like the info in this article is accurate. May want to update to avoid confusion.

          2. My article accurately explains that Dashcam is not available as of right now. The only hardware for the Dashcam to work is a camera, which you already have – if your car is equipped with Augmented Video for Nav, because it uses the very same camera. The recording happens via a USB cable connected to SD Card or a portable hard drive. What you have missing is a “brain” software to control the Dashcam recordings. A person who answered your letter is a simple non-technical clerk, who reads from what he has, and replies accordingly. There is no guarantee that Dashcam will ever work, but I think it should be available at some point as I described in my article. If you need it ASAP, you can find tons of the aftermarket accessories on the market today.

  5. I picked up an EQC 21/10/2020 with augmented reality SatNav. I have a dashcam menu in the MBUX. I also have the ME app “DASHCAM”. I asked the dealer if they could switch it on. MB official response, they are currently undergoing field testing in Austria and I will be notified when available. I have since installed my own front & rear cams.

    1. If you have the app, why can’t you use it? Have you tried? What does the license view state regarding the Dashcam, is it enabled or disabled?

  6. I bought a MB CLA 250, it has premium package (DL3) and luxury (PYO), dashcam (21U) and 360 parking cam (P47). Can I activate the augmented video (U19) with a future upgrade?? I think I don’t have the DA5..

    1. I’m not familiar with DL3 or PYO. In order to have Navigation, Augmented Video, and Dashcam – you must have Multimedia package DA5.

  7. I have purchased a 2021 Mercedes GLE 450 SUV. I purchased all the required options! It started being built in Alabama USA on Oct 13, 2020. It arrived at the dealer in Ohio on Oct 17, 2020. I have been asking for a dashcam since day one! The dealer could never answer any questions and had no knowledge of dashcam capabilities. I had to escalate this issue. Finally, I am getting some responses. However, I don’t trust them. They are no telling me that they have to install two separate cameras and all the associated wiring to get me the dashcam capability. I asked why they cannot use the existing cameras. They don’t know. They sent me their installation guide which show how to install a standalone two camera dashcam. Who can I talk to to get a straight forward and truthful discussion? I can send you the PDF of the dashcam installation guide. The title for the installation guide is “Retrofit front and rear Mercedes-Benz Dashcam” dated 12.09.20196.
    It doesn’t make any sense and is very frustrating!

    Thanks for any help on this.

    1. Look at your build-sheet printout from Netstar. If you don’t have it, ask your dealer to print it, or I can run it if you give me the VIN number of your car. There should be code – 21U. If it’s not there – then you don’t have Dashcam option. If it’s there – then you do.

  8. I do not have the 21U nor the DA5 options in my delivered vehicle. It appears they were and are not available on the Mercedes site to do a build.

    My VIN is = 4JGFB5KB1MA320522

    How do I get these options now that I have received my car? I was hoping for just a software upgrade.

    Thanks

  9. Hey,

    I got a 2021 GLE 53 Coupe and it has the AR camera but I’m having the same problem with connecting or activating the Dash Cam. Contacted my Dealer and Customer Service in Canada both of which couldn’t give me a direct answer. The dealer said it would cost me another $1000 to get it done but they had no idea about the AR software. Hope this gets resolved soon so I can avoid installing an aftermarket one.

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