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According to my owner's manual the rear lamp on the driver side(left) only work when you turn on the fog light. but the way I see it there is a lamp mounted on the right hand side that does not lit. Is there a theory on this?
 

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Founding Member #2 2008 SLK55 AMG
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Yes. That's how MB designed it. Light up only at driver's side (rear fog) and avoid it being confused as a brake light. The lamp for the passenger side rear fog is present in the R171 but non-functional (unless enabled by SDS).
 
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Premium Member 2009 SLK55 AMG
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It must be really foggy everywhere as this topic is brought up once a week now it seems. I recommend doing a search (and not using your rear fog light unless it is in fact foggy out).
 

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It must be really foggy everywhere as this topic is brought up once a week now it seems. I recommend doing a search (and not using your rear fog light unless it is in fact foggy out).
Yep, used it in San Simeon the first night leaving Manta Rey restaurant. (Notice that it wasn't unilateral :))
 

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Also, if the brake light fails; the rear fog light is being used as a backup.
 

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The lamp for the passenger side rear fog is present in the R171 but non-functional (unless enabled by SDS).
Of course in a right-hand-drive country, this is the drivers side, and it's the only one activated there.

I was once a passenger in a car on the Autobahn and we were "flashed" for still having our rear foglight on after the fog (maybe it was snow) had cleared. Germans play by the rules.
 
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