Glossary of Lease Terms


Acquisition Fee: An amount included in most lease agreements that is assessed to cover administrative costs, such as obtaining a credit report, processing lease documentation, etc. This fee is usually added to the total cost of the vehicle, although it can be paid up front in the Amount Due at Signing.

Adjusted Capitalized Cost: The net amount capitalized at the beginning of a lease, equal to the capitalized cost minus the capitalized cost reduction. This is the amount on which the lease payment calculation is based. It may also be referred to as the Adjusted Cap Cost.

Amortized Amounts: Any additional dealer installed options or accessories added to the negotiated price of the vehicle which are to be paid for over the term of the lease agreement.

Amount Due at Signing or Delivery: The amount due at the dealership at the time the lease agreement is signed and the vehicle is delivered. This amount generally includes the first monthly payment, the capitalized cost reduction, the acquisition fee (if not capitalized), sales/use tax, refundable security deposit(s), registration/title fees, license fees, etc.

Amount Financed: The amount upon which finance charges are assessed. This generally includes the cash price of the vehicle, plus any applicable taxes, title and registration fees, license fees, service contracts and insurance, less any down payment and/or net trade-in allowance. This is the amount that is subject to finance charges.

Annual Percentage Rate (APR): The rate of interest charged annually on credit, expressed as a percentage.

Application: A request for an extension of credit, either for a retail contract of lease agreement. The application can be completed at the dealership or online at Click here to access the online application – there is no cost or obligation and the personal information of all applicants is protected.

Auto Pay program: Monthly payments can be arranged to be automatically debited from a checking/draft account.



Balloon Contract: A retail contract that is amortized to the expected end-term value with a remaining balance to be paid in a lump (balloon) payment at the end of the term.

Balloon Payment: The estimated final lump or balloon payment that covers the remaining expected end-term value of the vehicle on a retail balloon contract.

Base Monthly Payment: The portion of the monthly payment in a lease that includes depreciation, any amortized amounts, and vehicle usage costs. Taxes, maintenance, and any other fees are added to this base monthly payment to calculate the total monthly payment.

Base Rent: Included as part of the base monthly payment, it is the amount charged in addition to the depreciation and any amortized amounts.

Billing Address: The mailing address to which you would like to have your monthly billing statement delivered to you. Typically, this is your home address, but can be any other address you request to which you have your monthly billing statement delivered, including a P.O. Box. You may update your billing address online by selecting “Update Personal Info” while you are logged in to “Manage Your Account”.



Capitalized Cost: The negotiated selling price of the vehicle, plus other costs included in the lease, such as acquisition fee, title and registration fees, insurance, etc. Also referred to as Cap Cost or Gross Capitalized Cost.

Capitalized Cost Reduction (Cap Cost Reduction): An amount – whether it be net trade-in allowance, rebate or cash – that reduces the gross capitalized cost.

Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) Vehicle: A vehicle that has been previously titled/owned and has passed the stringent Mercedes-Benz certification criteria, including a rigorous 130+ point inspection. Click here for more information on Mercedes-Benz Certified Pre-Owned vehicles.

Closed-End Lease: A type of lease in which the lessor absorbs the loss if, at the end of the lease, the vehicle is worth less than the residual value. The lessee is responsible for any excess mileage and/or excess wear and use charges.

Co-Buyer: An individual who also signs the loan contract or lease agreement and, thereby, assumes equal responsibility for the repayment of the loan or lease.

Contract Date: The date the lease agreement or retail contact is signed.

Contract Term: Length of retail contract or lease agreement, expressed as monthly increments. The range is usually from 24 to 60 months in most states.

CPO: Certified Pre-Owned. See above.



Depreciation: The amount of a vehicle’s projected decline in value through normal use during the lease term, calculated as the adjusted capitalized cost minus the residual value.

Down Payment: The amount of cash or net trade-in allowance applied to reduce the amount financed and lower the monthly payment.



Early Termination: Occurs when a lessee returns their leased vehicle prior to the scheduled termination date.

End of Term: The end of the agreed upon lease term.

Excess Mileage: Additional miles that are driven above and beyond the miles allowed in the lease agreement. There is currently a 0.25¢ charge that is assessed for each mile beyond the mileage allowance. At lease inception, additional mileage can be purchased at a reduced rate of 0.20¢ and rolled into your monthly payment.

Excess Wear and Use: The standard for excess wear and use is set forth in your lease. Mercedes-Benz Financial Services’ unique Three-Point Inspection process helps you understand how many of the important components of excess wear and use are assessed to determine the condition of your vehicle. The Three-Point Inspection is:
The Credit Card Test: Generally, if exterior and interior damage cannot be seen when placing a credit card over it, then it “passes the test” and you will not be charged.*
Windshield, Lights, Wheels and Tires: A quick visual check of these areas can also help take the guesswork out of the damage assessment process.
Missing Items: Check for the original equipment and verify that scheduled maintenance is up to date.

*The Credit Card Test does not apply to windshields, lights, wheels, tires, exterior cracks, gouges, collective damage or holes in the sheet metal or frame, or other major damage outside of ordinary wear and use.Your 90 day to maturity package contains complete guidelines for chargeable damage.

Check it out before turning it in. Contact your Mercedes-Benz dealer to schedule an optional Vehicle Condition Review to prepare for your lease-end inspection.



First Class Lease® (The): Mercedes-Benz Financial Services’ exclusive lease program.

First Class Financing®: Mercedes-Benz Financial Services’ exclusive retail finance program.

First Class Finish® (The): Mercedes-Benz Financial Services’ simple and straightforward lease-end process.



GAP Waiver Insurance: Designed to give you peace of mind, our GAP Waiver (included in The First Class Lease) will cover the difference between the insurance proceeds and the balance owed to Mercedes-Benz Financial Services, less any deductible, if your leased Mercedes-Benz is declared a total loss (due to accident, theft, etc.).

Garaging Address (applicable for lease accounts only): The address where the vehicle is physically kept. A P.O. Box can not be used as a garaging address. If you are moving and need to update your garaging address, you can do so online by selecting “Update Personal Info” while you are logged in to Manage Your Account. There may be tax implications for changes to your garaging address. Contact your local Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) for additional information. For assistance in locating the DMV for your state, you may visit .

Gross Capitalized Cost: The negotiated selling price of the vehicle, plus other costs included in the lease, such as acquisition fee, title and registration fees, insurance, etc. Also referred to as Gross Cap Cost or Cap Cost.



High Mileage Lease Option: A First Class Lease option suited especially for those who spend a lot of time behind the wheel. This lease offers an annual 20,000 mile maximum and an opportunity for high mileage drivers to take advantage of the benefits of leasing.



Insurance: The primary insurance coverage which must be provided on a vehicle during the entire First Class Financing or First Class Lease term.



Lease: An agreement for the use of a vehicle between a lessor and lessee with mutually agreed upon terms and conditions, such as term, monthly payment, etc. The vehicle is titled in the name of the lessor, changing to the lessee when and if the lessee elects to purchase the vehicle at lease end.

Lessee: The person or organization to whom the vehicle is leased; signatory to the lease agreement.

Lessor: On the First Class Lease, the lessor is first the Mercedes-Benz dealer and then Mercedes-Benz Financial Services after the lease is assigned; the organization leasing the vehicle to the lessee.



Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP): The base retail price of the vehicle plus any factory installed options, as detailed on the window sticker or Monroni label.

Maturity Date: The date the lease is scheduled to end.

Mileage Allowance: The agreed upon number of miles that can be driven annually during the course of the lease term.

Mileage Options: The possible mileage choices the lessee can elect when leasing a Mercedes-Benz vehicle through Mercedes-Benz Financial Services – 7,500 / 10,000 / 12,000 / 15,000 (standard term) / 20,000 – of course, additional miles are available for purchase.

Missing Records Fee: The amount assessed to a lessee if a lease vehicle is missing records, or returned without the vehicle’s maintenance booklets.



Parking Ticket Administration Fee: A fee which is assessed to a lease account if a previously unpaid parking ticket for the lease vehicle was paid by the lessor. Mercedes-Benz Financial Services assesses an administration fee of $25 on lease accounts originating on or after January, 2002, or $20 on lease accounts originating before January, 2002. The fee is assessed in addition to the amount of the ticket.

Personal Property Tax: A state or locality imposed percentage tax which is assessed to owners of certain personal property, such as: automobiles and/or other vehicles, durable goods (usually excluding household goods and personal effects), stocks, bonds, etc. Personal Property Tax is assessed based on the fair market value of the property. Contact your local Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) for additional information. For assistance in locating the DMV for your state, you may visit .

Purchase Option: The lease end option which allows the lessee to purchase the vehicle for a previously established price.



Refundable Security Deposit: The amount collected by the lessor at the beginning of a lease to guarantee the lessee complies with the terms and conditions defined in the lease. Refundable at lease end provided all terms and conditions are met and there are no outstanding charges or payments due.

Residual Value: The value the lessor anticipates the vehicle will be worth at lease end, used when calculating the monthly payment. The residual value is generally shown as a percentage of the MSRP.

Retail Installment Contract: Mercedes-Benz Financial Services’ retail contract executed between MBFS and the purchaser for the sale of a new or pre-owned Mercedes-Benz vehicle.



Sales Tax: A state or locality imposed percentage tax which is assessed on certain goods and/or services at the point of purchase. Sales tax on automobile leases may be imposed at the beginning of the lease or as the payments become due, depending on the state or the locality.

Scheduled Termination: The date the lease term ends; also referenced as Maturity Date.

Single Pay Option: A lessee may opt to make one single up-front payment, thereby realizing a savings on interest through a discounted interest rate.



Term: The length of the retail contract or lease agreement, expressed usually in months (e.g., 39 months, 60 months).

Termination: The point when the terms and conditions of the lease agreement have been fulfilled. Early termination is possible but penalties are usually incurred.

Title: The legal document used to identify the owner of a vehicle. In a lease, the lessor holds the title to the vehicle.

Total Sale Price: The total cost of your purchase, including the down payment.



Ultra Low Mileage Lease Option: An option of The First Class Lease suited especially for those who drive less than 10,000 miles/year. This lease option offers an annual 7,500 mileage allowance and a lower monthly payment.



Vehicle Return: Returning the vehicle is one of several options available at lease-end.

Vehicle Turn-in Fee: (Or Disposition Fee) The amount due at lease-end, in addition to any over mileage charges, excessive wear and use fees, etc. This fee covers costs associated with returning the leased vehicle.