Ford Must Face Down the Germans if Lincoln Is to Succeed
NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Ford's (F) effort to revive Lincoln has caught the auto industry's imagination, but the market for luxury automobiles isn't exactly a place where dissatisfied consumers are lining up to buy a so-far-unseen vehicle because they can't wait to switch brands.
Rather, some Mercedes owners treasure the moment when "they park their car, get out, click the close button and then they look back and stare at their car," said Steve Cannon, CEO of Mercedes Benz USA, in an interview at the New York Auto Show. It is a moment of pride, he said, that even other luxury automakers cannot provide. As a result, he said, 57% of Mercedes buyers, the highest rate in the industry, are repeat buyers.
At BMW, the top selling U.S. luxury brand, competition is nothing new.