Mercedes-Benz will allow owners of some cars to unlock more power after purchase… for an annual fee, of course.

    In the USA, owners of its electric EQE sedan and SUV and EQS liftback and SUV can now pay $US1200 per year (~$A2000) to shave up to a second from their 100km/h sprint times with software.

    Mercedes-Benz Australia had “no announcements” to make about whether it will offer similar subscriptions locally. Currently, it only offers the EQS liftback Down Under, although the EQE sedan, and EQE/SQS SUV ranges are on track to arrive in 2023.

    Power in the EQE 350 4MATIC jumps from 215kW to 260kW, while the EQS 450 4MATIC gains 55kW to pack 330kW.

    The so-called Acceleration Increase subscription is listed with the following explanation on the North American store:

    “Fine tuning of the electric motors increases the maximum motor output of your Mercedes-EQ by 20 to 24 per cent.”

    ‘The torque is also increased, enabling your vehicle to accelerate noticeably faster and more powerfully.”

    Mercedes-Benz isn’t the only brand looking to move into monthly or annual payments from its customers.

    BMW will offer a monthly, yearly, or permanent payment to activate the heated seats on its X1 sDrive18i SUV in Australia, and has previously made owners pay ongoing fees for Apple CarPlay.

    Toyota also offers a subscription in Australia, but rather than hardware features will make owners pay to maintain access to its connected services.

    Scott Collie

    Scott Collie is an automotive journalist based in Melbourne, Australia. Scott studied journalism at RMIT University and, after a lifelong obsession with everything automotive, started covering the car industry shortly afterwards. He has a passion for travel, and is an avid Melbourne Demons supporter.

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