Motoring

Mercedes launches ‘direct to customer’ sales model

Mercedes-Benz has implemented its new direct-to-customer sales model in the country.

Traditionally, carmakers sell their vehicles first to authorised dealers , who in turn retail them to prospective owners. Under its new Retail of the Future (ROTF) model, the automaker will now be the one directly drawing the invoice for customers. The company says India is its first CKD (completely knocked down) market, and fourth worldwide, to implement ROTF, with Sweden, Austria and South Africa being the other global markets.

The luxury carmaker has also received over 1,700 orders while beta testing the new sales plan in India.

Even under the new sales model, the current showroom infrastructure will continue, and dealers will still be responsible for test drives and vehicle deliveries. However, customers will now be paying Mercedes-Benz India directly, and not the dealer, for their new vehicle.

Mercedes will also control the pricing centrally, which means customers will no longer be able to haggle over the price or pit the quotation from one dealership against another. Discounts will still be provided, but with Mercedes in-charge of the offers, they will be uniform across the country.

In-charge of its nationwide stock, Mercedes-Benz says it will be able to provide customers with the VIN (vehicle identification number), right at the time of the booking. Using Mercedes-Benz’s online store, buyers will also be able to search for their exact model specification from the available stock, view the on-road price based on their PIN code and make bookings.

Commenting on its latest move, Martin Schwenk, MD and CEO of Mercedes-Benz India, said, “With ROTF (Retail Of The Future), we have created a completely unified customer journey experience with many industry-first initiatives. For the first time in India, there are no incidental or extra charges for the customers.”

“Customers now have a direct access to Mercedes-Benz India’s national stock with a wide variety of inventory choices. ROTF is a step in the right direction in getting closer to our customers, and a result of listening to their wishes and evolving requirements.”

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Printable version | Dec 9, 2021 8:27:18 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/life-and-style/motoring/mercedes-launches-direct-to-customer-sales-model/article37138598.ece

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