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“In our Best of the Best testing, we found the GL to be as fine a seven-seater as one could ask for. Quiet and smooth in the extreme with plenty of power and imperceptible shifts, the GL has an adjustable suspension that makes the ride suitable for most conditions, or at least all of the ones we encountered.”
“What ultimately pushed the GL over the top was that it has all those attributes and just drips quality, from the sheetmetal gaps to the door thunks. The cockpit is well built from quality materials, and the seats comfortable for long hauls—we spent literally days behind the wheel with nary a complaint.”
Read the full review at Autoweek online.
“Little did we realize just how badly the GL would bully the other 10 competitors. At the end of our testing, we’d narrowed the field down to three potential winners: the GL, the Ford Escape, and the Nissan Pathfinder. But in truth, it was no contest.”
“The real point, however, is how totally and completely the new GL dominates this segment. Calling it best in class is the definition of an understatement. It’s the best the class has ever seen.”
“At first glance against our six criteria — Performance of Intended Function, Design Advancement, Engineering Excellence, Efficiency, Safety, and Value — the Mercedes nails five of them. Value is, of course, the sticky wicket. But as stated earlier, when you start comparing apples to apples, the GL is no more expensive than the vehicles it directly competes against.”
Read the full article at Motor Trend Online.
“Its interior styling is more luxurious than the previous-generation model, with one of the nicest improvements being the massive piece of burled wood covering the dash from edge to edge.”
“Most of the judges liked the styling changes, and everyone agreed the GLK is an exceptionally fun vehicle to drive. It’s quick, nimble, and confidence-inspiring, with exceptional braking.”
“For our 2013 Sport/Utility of the Year competition, the overwhelming majority of the competitors were car-based. There was one that wasn’t though, the 2013 Mercedes-Benz GL-Class, a vehicle that in the words of technical director Frank Markus, “did more of what we expect an SUV to do.””
Good luck to both competitors! The results will be available on October 15th.
For 2011 Mercedes-Benz USA held a “Beyond the Walkaround” Competition for salespeople to test our product knowledge, presentation skills and customer interactions. I competed at the Market Level and Regional Level to advance to the National Finals held in November in New York City at Mercedes-Benz of Manhattan. The four finalists, one each from the Northeast, Southern, Central and Western Regions presented the ML-Class to the Exectutive Management Team of Mercedes-Benz USA as well as our Learning & Performance training team. I placed second at the National Level this year and was presented with this unique trophy by President & CEO Herbert Werner and VP of Sales Mike Slagter. It was an honor to represent Atlanta Classic Cars and the Southern Region at the National Level. It was a great experience and I will certainly put the product knowledge and sales skills to use! Thank you to everyone who organized this great competition.
Mercedes-Benz USA was one of only 40 companies to receive the distinction of being a J.D. Power 2011 Customer Service Champion.
Five key customer “touch points” are measured - people, presentation, process, product and price – to identify companies that excel within their own industry and also stand out among all 20 major industries that J.D. Power evaluates.
Ernst Lieb, president and CEO of MBUSA, says “This is an important confirmation of the extraordinary effort we have undertaken with our dealer partners over the past few years to ensure that we are delivering the very best experience to our customers.”
JD Power has announced that Mercedes-Benz had the highest, new car buyer, customer retention rate of any brand in 2009. 66% of Mercedes-Benz owners who purchased a new vehicle bought another Mercedes-Benz.
Mercedes-Benz also ranked in the top 10 of all the major JD Power syndicated surveys for 2009!
1st in Customer Retention
3rd in Sales Satisfaction
6th in Initial Quality
6th in Product Appeal
9th in Customer Service
9th in Vehicle Dependability
That is a well rounded ownership experience! And we are moving up every year!
Our loyalty increased 8% over last year to 67% overall! In these tough economic times it speaks to the value of the brand that 2/3rds of our owners come back time after time!
The study says “Mercedes-Benz has steadily improved its customer retention rates during the past five years, and in 2009, has achieved the highest rate ever attained by a manufacturer since the inception of the study,” said Festekjian. “In particular, customers cite the resale value and appearance and styling of Mercedes-Benz models as primary reasons to remain loyal to the brand.”
I’ll post some pictures and the video once I get them from the training department. Thank you to everyone who helped me prepare!
The competition was part of the National Dealer Meeting, so I was able to see (no cameras allowed) the new E-Class Cabriolet scheduled for release this spring and the SLS AMG! Both were spectacular and will be very successful!
If you want to learn all about the 2010 E-Class from the most knowledgeable salesperson in the whole United States please stop by Atlanta Classic Cars and pay me a visit.
I returned from Germany about a month ago now. Sorry for the delay in posting!
There are no pictures from the Test Track at Unterturkheim, the Mercedes-Benz Engine Production Plant in Cannstatt, or from inside the AMG factory in Affalterbach, which were certainly some of the best parts of the trip. Mercedes closely guards their secrets and we were not allowed to take pictures there. I have included an old stock picture from Unterturkheim because I couldn’t put into words what we got to experience there!
The Engine Plant was striking in how clean and efficient it was. They pride themselves on high standards for the workers, including a 35-hour workweek, over a month of paid vacation, facilities that are non-toxic and empowering the workers to fix things and stop problems. Here the engines start down the production line and both the workers and the robots add parts, adjust tolerances and test the components. I found it very interesting that the engines come down the line mixed together. It isn’t 200 right-hand-drive V-6′s one day and 200 diesel V8′s the next. It is one of each of whatever is needed. They are currently expanding the facility because they also produce engines for some of our competitors and demand has grown.
At AMG, the facilities are just as impressive but the production of the engines is kind of opposite. The block is mounted to a cart and the single technician moves that cart from station to station adding the components and testing as he goes. After the engine is complete all of the V12 engines and a selection of the V8′s go to the test bench and are put through their paces. We saw a V12 race around the track virtually and it shook the room! At this location they also do customization for an elite clientele. We saw elongated G-wagons, an ML with a royal blue and yellow interior and a CL with more security features that an embassy!
The day we were scheduled to go to the Production Plant in Sindelfingen the plant closed for a meeting! (The meeting was to discuss reducing production by 35,000 units for the rest of the year.) We were able to go to the European Delivery Center in Sindelfingen instead and see where our clients would pick up their vehicle. In Germany it is popular to pick up your new vehicle from the factory rather than the local dealership!
I had not been to Germany before and was surprised by the beautiful countryside and vineyards. It reminded me of upstate New York in the fall. The trip was a wonderful mix of the Mercedes production and history I was looking forward to and a tour of Germany that I wasn’t expecting. Thank you to Mercedes-Benz Training and Education for arranging the trip and to Fred Schoeninger, our fantastic guide!