Auto Remarketing has learned that Mercedes-Benz USA has a new manager of pre-owned operations. Scott Penza, who held the role previously, has moved over to work on sales incentives in finance at MBUSA.
Now managing pre-owned for the company is Rob Zilinski, who has been with Mercedes-Benz for 16 years. Zilinski spent 10 of those years in the company’s Northeast region, where he served as a market manager on Long Island, N.Y., regional marketing/advertising manager and in his most recent position as regional service and parts manager.
As he takes on this new role, Zilinski shared some of his goals for the certified pre-owned post with Auto Remarketing.
“Success in the certified pre-owned space is crucial to the operations of any manufacturer and dealer. For Mercedes-Benz, it allows us to extend the reach of our brand, welcome a broader customer base to our family and deliver an industry leading product and experience through our valued dealer partners,” he said.
“For our franchised dealers, certified pre-owned success is a critical piece to the profit equation,” Zilinski continued. “The new-car lifecycle continues to get shorter due to a combination of fantastic new products, loyal customers that eagerly await new models and the desire of our customers to take full advantage of our new-car lease rates.
“The increased focus on certified pre-owned allows us to not only provide value-driven service and parts support to our new-car customers, but to ensure that vehicle retention is maintained in the service drive beyond the first owner.”
Ultimately, he said, CPO is “the key” to keeping OEM and dealer profits rolling, calling it “the most reliable driver of new-vehicle sales and service and parts business.”
Last year, Mercedes-Benz sold 80,291 certified vehicles, which was a 7.7-percent improvement from 2011, according to Autodata Corp. Not only that, Autodata said Mercedes-Benz closed 2012 with its best-ever December for certified, moving 6,939 CPO units, a 13.5-percent year-over-year hike.
And it appears the brand has even bigger plans for 2013.
“We fully expect 2013 to be a record year for Mercedes-Benz and our dealers in CPO, new and the service and parts business,” Zilinski concluded.