A $30,000 Mercedes? Yep, It's Coming
Generation Y is on Mercedes Benz's radar screen.
The head of the German luxury car company's U.S. unit said the generation of people born from the mid-1970s to the 1980s — an estimated 75 million — are starting to look for a luxury car, which means a boost for Mercedes.
"We're redefining the access point for the brand. We're opening up the brand for more buyers," Steve Cannon, CEO of Mercedes Benz US told CNBC Wednesday.
Mercedes will be offering an A class $30,000 compact car starting next year. It already offers an M-Class sedan at close to $36,000 and wants Gen Y to grow into the brand's more expensive C, E and S class vehicles.
"If you don’t have a vital ingress point into your brand, over time as folks get older your brand becomes an upside-down pyramid," he said. "We need to have a healthy entry point."
Translation: Get them in the Mercedes while they're young.
The Millennial Generation is coming with very high expectations and don't want to leave their iPads at the curb, Cannon said.
"They're very demanding. They're not going to cut you a break... These folks are digital natives and want to continue to live digital lives once they get inside of our car," he said. "They're going to expect a product design and package and price that's going to suit their needs."
That's why the Daimler unit, whose sales are up 20 percent, is launching a suite of digital, in-car services that are "ready for prime time," including a concierge service, he said.