Mr. Cannon, 50, has been VP-marketing for Mercedes-Benz USA since June 2007. He will replace Ernst Lieb, 56, who was fired abruptly in October for alleged misuse of company funds.
Mr. Cannon is only the second American to become CEO of Mercedes-Benz USA, according to a company spokeswoman. The first was Mike Jackson, who is now CEO of AutoNation.
Herbert Werner, 56, VP-finance at Mercedes-Benz USA and the only German on the automaker's U.S. executive team, has been serving as interim CEO.
Cannon began his automotive career in 1991 as executive assistant to the president and CEO of Mercedes-Benz of North America.
He later relocated to the automaker's global headquarters in Stuttgart, Germany, and joined a small team assigned to develop, manufacture and launch the M-Class.
It was the first Mercedes-Benz SUV made in and for the U.S. market.
Diana Kurylko is a reporter for Automotive News.