Mercedes looks to be heading down the subscription route for add-ons, with an ‘Acceleration Increase’ subscription for EQE and EQS EVs.
In recent years, we’ve all become used to paying modest subscriptions for stuff like Netflix and Amazon, and we’re now very used to paying a monthly mobile phone payment bundling handset, calls and data into a single monthly fee, with upsells selling you additional functionality.
Car makers have already cottoned on to this as a way of delivering new cars you effectively rent, with no ownership model, bundling in insurance and maintenance costs so all you have to do is add fuel and you’re good to go.
But it’s becoming clear that car makers are already plotting to charge you monthly payments for functionality too, pre-fitting their cars with what we would once have called options and activating them only when you subscribe to them as a ‘service’. Like BMW with heated seats.
Now, Mercedes is plotting to deliver ‘performance’ as a subscription service with its electric cars and SUVs, and looks to have announced its first outing in the US (you can the announcement here).
Mercedes reckons that for around £1k a year (yes, every year) you can boost the power and performance of your EQE, EQE SUV, EQS and EQS SUV by 20-24 per cent, in the process increasing bhp and torque to deliver acceleration times improved by up to 0.9 seconds to 62mph.
It’s the start of a slippery slope.