Mr. Cannon, who most recently ran Hyundai Motor America's regional dealer group advertising at Richards Group, will join the automaker's executive management team overseeing marketing communications, market research and product management for the Mercedes-Benz and Maybach brands in the U.S. He will report to Ernst Lieb, president-CEO of Mercedes-Benz USA.
Mr. Cannon becomes the fourth VP-marketing at Mercedes-Benz USA since summer 2001. "He's a class act, and he's smart," said a former insider who asked not to be named. His first major task will be the launch of the newest C-Class later this year.
11 months in the job
The marketing post has been vacant since Mark McNabb was moved to VP-sales in January after 11 months in the job; he subsequently left the automaker in March to rejoin Nissan Motor Co.
Mercedes-Benz said it sold 98,696 new vehicles in the U.S. through May, nearly a 5% jump from the same period a year ago.
Mr. Cannon started his career in the auto industry at Mercedes-Benz in 1991 as executive assistant to the president-CEO in Montvale, N.J. He later moved to worldwide headquarters in Stuttgart, Germany, and was part of the small team that developed plans for the brand's first SUV, the M-Class. He also spent two years at the end of the 1990s as marketing director of the automaker's financial-services arm.