Mercedes-Benz Launches Integrated Campaign for Introduction of the New-Generation E-Class

* Innovative marketing mix with roadshow, dedicated website, charity auction and long-distance drive

* Exclusive test drives to highlight the strengths of the new E-Class

* “Personal guide” guides users through special interactive website

Stuttgart, Jun 01, 2006
Mercedes-Benz is launching the second phase of an innovative integrated campaign to mark the introduction of the new-generation E-Class on June 10, 2006. The campaign’s worldwide slogan is “E-Class Experience”. Following the start of traditional advertising in early May, Mercedes-Benz will be offering potential and existing customers various opportunities to gain a first-hand impression of the strengths of the new upper-range model. Marketing activities range from exclusive test drives to a special interactive website, a charity auction on eBay and an extraordinary long distance tour across Europe and Asia. According to Dr. Olaf Göttgens, head of Brand Communications for Mercedes-Benz Passenger Cars, “We want the product experience for our potential customers to be at the center of all of our communications activities. That’s why we are providing opportunities to experience the new E-Class in its natural environment, so that prospects can become excited about its unmistakable characteristics of safety, dynamics, comfort and reliability. The quality of target group care at all contact points is a crucial part of this effort.”

Beginning in September, Mercedes-Benz will be staging a roadshow that will allow potential customers to view the vehicle in an exclusive setting and test-drive it accompanied by an expert. In Germany, the “E-Class Experience” tour will be stopping in Düsseldorf, Essen, Frankfurt, Hamburg, Cologne, Munich and Nuremberg. The roadshow will then continue to further European countries and overseas.

In addition, Mercedes-Benz will for the first time be exhibiting the E-Class at large non-automotive trade shows such as photokina in Cologne, the Tendence Lifestyle Fair in Frankfurt and the Systems show in Munich. The E-Class showroom will reflect the theme of each event. In a relaxed lounge atmosphere, visitors will be offered a wealth of information on the new E-Class, the safest vehicle in its segment. Starting this summer, the classic Mercedes-Benz business sedan will also be on display in about 100 selected European hotels and in highly frequented business lounges of well known airlines.

Mercedes-Benz is also taking an innovative approach with a special website dedicated just to the E-Class. At the multimedia website – http://www.e-class-experience.com – users can view the highlights of the new-generation vehicle with the help of an interactive “personal guide”, starting June 10. A video podcast will be launched on June 2. As of May 22, eBay (the world’s largest online auction house) and the new brand forum at http://www.mobile.de/mercedes-benz are also providing information on the new generation of the E-Class and allowing car enthusiasts to bid in an online charity auction of an E-Class special model. The proceeds of the auction, which runs until June 3, will go to the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation established by Mercedes-Benz. Tennis star Boris Becker, the foundation’s chairman in Germany, will hand over the vehicle to the highest bidder on July 7, 2006 at a gala during the Mercedes-Benz Golf Charity event in Berlin.

E-Class on the trail of the first intercontinental auto race

The third and final stage of the E-Class communication will kick off with a very special long distance tour, when 33 E-Class vehicles equipped with the latest diesel technology make their way from the Paris Motor Show to Beijing. Large parts of the tour will follow the route of the first intercontinental auto race in history, which took place 99 years ago. The 13,000-kilometer trip, which includes some challenging terrain, will allow the new-generation E-Class to demonstrate not only the performance of its enhanced diesel technology, but also its reliability on long journeys. People who would like to take part in this one-of-a-kind adventure can apply at http://www.e-class-experience.com, starting this summer.

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