Canadian Mercedes-Benz dealers are getting creative by offering alternative options to appease customers as delays of 2017 model vehicles limit stock at dealerships.
It’s all because of Natural Resources Canada’s tougher vehicle inspection processes in response to the Volkswagen diesel emissions scandal.
Mercedes-Benz was the first company to tell Automotive News Canada that 2017 vehicles are being delayed up to two months due to more intense scrutiny from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
EPA certification is accepted by Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC), which means the U.S. regulator’s closer look – both at diesel- and gasoline-engined models – can cause delays in Canadian delivery schedules.
In Calgary, Perry Itzcovitch, dealer principal at Downtown Mercedes-Benz, says all Mercedes-Benz dealers have experienced delays and longer delivery times.
The delays have been mostly diesel SUVs, GLS and GLE, Itzcovitch says.
“It’s not a huge issue on passenger cars since most are gasoline-powered and not suspect,” he said.
However, neither the EPA nor ECCC would specify which models have been delayed.
“There are no delays in the entry of vehicles due to the Canadian regulatory process,” ECCC Senior Communications Advisor Maja Stefanovska wrote in an email to Automotive News Canada.
“Environment and Climate Change Canada cannot comment on whether delays are being experienced in the issuance of certificates of conformity in the U.S.”
Nor would the EPA say which vehicles are being tested or delayed.
“I am not able to confirm the status of preproduction vehicles until manufacturers introduce them into commerce to respect any potential confidential business information,” EPA spokesman Nick Conger said in a statement.