For Nearly $3,000 a Month, Mercedes-Benz Is Giving Customers Unlimited Access to Its Fleet

June 5, 2018, 6:28 PM UTC

Mercedes Benz is launching an app-based subscription service that will give drivers access to different luxury vehicle for up to $2,995 a month. Mercedes joins a growing group of automakers, including rival BMW, Porsche, GM’s Cadillac, and Volvo that are testing new ways to generate revenue beyond the traditional business of building and selling cars.

For now, the service is just a pilot. The monthly subscription called Mercedes-Benz Collection will be tested in Nashville and Philadelphia. BMW’s U.S. subscription pilot, which launched in April for up $3,700 a month, is also in Nashville.

But the subscription service could expand as customers shift away from owning vehicles and move towards short-term rental services like car2go and peer-to-peer options, such as Turo.

“Customer’s appetites are changing when it comes to how they access products and services, and our financial and mobility services are evolving to fit those demands,” Geoff Robinson, vice president of Mercedes-Benz Financial Services unit, said in a statement.

Mercedes’s subscription service has three tiers — signature, reserve, and premier, with prices ranging between $1,095 and $2,995 a month. Each city will offer two of these tiers. To subscribe, users have to provide personal information and a driver’s license. Mercedes checks each prospective customer’s driving and credit history. Drivers must pay a one-time activation fee of $495 to begin the subscription.

Customers can swap out vehicles or communicate with a concierge service via the Mercedes-Benz Collection app, which is available in the Apple App Store or Google Play Store. The concierge staff then delivers the vehicle — washed and with a full tank of gas — to the customer. Customers can choose from all the vehicle body styles offered in whatever tier they subscribed to, including Mercedes-Benz SUVs, sedans, coupes, cabriolets, roadsters and wagon models.

Subscribers can access any type of vehicle within their tier with no mileage limitations. The monthly subscription fee for the tier also includes insurance, 24/7 roadside assistance, and vehicle maintenance.