LOS ANGELES -- Mercedes-Benz USA is providing dealers as much as $2,500 to please each buyer of the redesigned S class.
Dealers have marching orders to quickly fix car problems, no matter how minor, without factory preapproval, said Steve Cannon, CEO of Mercedes-Benz USA. The money also can be used on perks, such as free dinners.
The new program, called MB Select, was launched when the redesigned 2014 S-class sedan went on sale in September in the United States. Mercedes wants to bolster its reputation for customer care.
Mercedes has extended the program to the new CLA, which went on sale in October, giving dealers as much as $1,000 per buyer of the front-wheel-drive sedan. Cannon said Mercedes will add other models to MB Select but was not specific.
Mercedes has lagged its competition in customer service. It ranked ninth of 11 luxury brands in the 2013 J.D. Power and Associates Customer Service Index Study, which measures satisfaction with dealership service operations.
The company told dealers to spend the money as they see fit, with "no questions asked."