CAPE TOWN - Mercedes-Benz has launched a new and allegedly simpler maintenance plan for South African customers and called it PremiumDrive. In 2013 SA customers will benefit from a six-year or 100 000km maintenance plan offered on all Mercedes-Benz, including the Viano, registered from January 1 2013.BEST IN CLASSNaeem Hassim, vice-president of after-sales for Mercedes SA, said: “With the PremiumDrive maintenance plan Mercedes is committed to offering our discerning customers the industry's 'best-in-class' service offering in the industry. Extensive research and customer surveys and focus groups showed buying behaviour and trends had shifted and customers preferred full cover on their maintenance contract rather than proportionate contributions."The plan includes cover for roadside assistance and touring and a "Sign and Drive" facility. 'Touring' covers "accommodation, public transport and vehicle repatriation" after a breakdown more than 100km from the vehicle’s licensing authority.Sign and Drive provides additional assistance for emergencies such as a flat battery or damaged tyres.PREMIUM DRIVE EXTENSIONCustomers can choose to top up their plan at an additional cost from February 1 2013:• PremiumDrive 100: eight years or 100000km• PremiumDrive 140: eight years or 140000km• PremiumDrive 160: eight years or 160000km• PremiumDrive 180: eight years or 180000kmOnly one choice can be made for the vehicle's life.MOBILODRIVE STATUSExisting customers with less than 60 000km on their vehicle can convert to PremiumDrive with an additional cost or stay on MobiloDrive (conversions to PremiumDrive are available from February 1 2013). All top-up versions for MobiloDrive will remain in place.Customers whose vehicle has covered more than 60 000km will have to remain on MobiloDrive.Hassim said: “Intensive training of all sales staff has been implemented and they are well-versed to take customers through our new offering."Click here for more information or email Mercedes-Benz SA.