This article is sponsored by Mercedes-Benz. However, our partnership came six months after I started with their subscription car service, Mercedes-Benz Collection, and I paid for the subscription out of my own pocket. All that to say, this is an authentic review!
Last summer I was stuck. The lease on my car was up, and I didn’t want to sign a multi-year lease. Plus, I’m too commitment-phobic to buy a car unless I really know what I want, which I didn’t. Then, I came across Mercedes-Benz Collection, a premium vehicle subscription service, and after running the numbers and thinking through the unique experience, I decided that this was exactly what I needed to do. And, even better, I could work the system so that I never had to pump gas or wash my car again. Sounds pretty amazing, right? It is.
At this point, you may be thinking, backup … what are you talking about? Yes, it’s a brand new way of thinking about car ownership — having access to a variety of cars to drive at all times. Let me walk you through the process.
For a $495 start-up fee, which you pay for via the Mercedes-Benz Collection app (meaning you never even need to go to the Mercedes-Benz showroom), you can sign up for this monthly subscription service and access an entire range of vehicles at will. Any day that you would like, Monday through Friday, you can have a new car brought to you and swapped out for your previously driven car. This is called a “flip.” Want a Cabriolet convertible to take advantage of the beautiful weather? Order it up. Need an SUV for a trip to the beach? No problem. Want a sedan for a business meeting. You got it. And, your commitment is only for 30-day increments. Keep going for a year or just for a few months — this is a car-commitment phobic person’s best dream as well as any person wanting the fun of the experience.
The Mercedes-Benz Collection premium subscription service currently has two tiers available in the Nashville market. The Signature Tier, which I signed up for, is $1,095/month and includes access to any of the eight vehicle models within this tier. The Reserve Tier, for $1,595/month, includes higher-end models from which there are nine to choose*. Both tiers include full limited liability insurance for you plus one other driver and, should you need it, all maintenance, service and roadside assistance. Plus, there is no mileage limit. As mentioned before, I don’t like to pump gas. I got really good at swapping out my vehicle when I had about a quarter of a tank left. A new, freshly washed and gas-filled vehicle would arrive always looking like it had just been detailed. The Mercedes-Benz concierge would then drive the previous car to the nearest gas station, pump the gas and charge my card on file for the exact amount at the pump. That’s how you work the system!
Imagine never needing to rotate tires, change oil or worry about a maintenance light while constantly having a fresh, clean car for any situation on the calendar: a vacation, a business meeting, a first date, an extravagant gala or simply a gorgeous day to drive down the Natchez Trace.
Everything is scheduled for a flip via the Mercedes-Benz Collection app (or text if you prefer), and it only takes about 60 seconds to schedule your flip.
So, what if you want a car from the next tier up? That’s possible as well. I opted to upgrade for a few days to the larger GLE 350 SUV available in the Reserve Tier. This cost $50/day more (the perfect option for a long weekend trip when the extra room may be needed). Then, for fun, I got to drive a G-Wagon for a few days, which is part of the upcoming highest level tier, Premier, which will be available soon in the Nashville market. My 14-year-old son was in heaven as I drove all over town just like Kristin Cavallari.
My favorite thing has been unexpected as I really fell for the Mercedes-Benz brand and got to have a long extended test drive in all their vehicles. Now, I’m looking at overcoming my car commitment-phobic self and leasing the GLC 300 SUV, which is on the lower end, price wise, for a Mercedes-Benz. It was my favorite ride of them all — it fits in my garage well, and it works in compact car spaces. Plus it’s a super smooth ride and the bells and whistles are just in line with what I enjoy. The seat is also so comfortable (as are ALL the Mercedes-Benz models I have been testing), and my bad back was always happy. This is a car I wasn’t considering before, and it’s my favorite. Who knew?
Lastly, in a day and age where customer service seems to be taking a back seat at many businesses, this is, in its sincerest form, a service subscription, and that means extreme customer service. I’ve never dealt so closely with a car company. They come to my work, swap everything in my car and text me to tell me my new car is ready. It’s so easy, and I feel so taken care of. If I needed my vehicle swapped at an entirely different location, for example, where I would be for a meeting for a few hours, Mercedes-Benz would meet me there. And each vehicle comes with a little bag of necessaries, as I like to call them: lotion, hand sanitizer, wet wipes, tissues, phone cables … I spilled my coffee one day, and voila, there were the wet wipes I needed. As a side note, I’ve also enjoyed the trunk organizer that comes with the vehicles. I’ve never had a trunk so easy to navigate as with this organizer. It’s the little things like this that make you feel connected to the brand and bought into this concept.
Don’t just take my word for it, I spoke with Mallory Ervin who also has been using Mercedes-Benz Collection for a few months. She says, “I love Mercedes-Benz subscription service because as a mom and a businesswoman I have different needs in a car. Sometimes we’re on a road trip, sometimes it’s a date night to an event, sometimes we’re driving to my parents in Kentucky. It’s so cool to be able to choose the vehicle that best suits our needs. There’s nothing out there like this. Also, it’s so fun! The new car feeling never wears off! I also love how the insurance is included and there is no mileage restriction like there is with a lease. There are so many things that I love about it which is why I am a member!”
We all spend enough time in our cars that the experience should be a pleasure. Mercedes-Benz has upped the game with their subscription service, and it’s worth looking into if you need an extra car for a few months or if you find yourself in a situation like I did with no car and a decision to make without a long-term commitment. I’m glad I tried it … and I’ve had so much fun.
Find out more about Mercedes-Benz Collection HERE.
*Vehicle availability subject to change. Visit collection.mbusa.com for more information.
*All photos by Leila Grossman of Grannis Photography.