"Who’s it for?
I asked Dr Pollmann precisely that question. He told me Zeiss is aiming at medium-format shooters migrating to the new breed of high-pixel-count 135-format SLRs"
Very smart move. Personally I think they will have a larger market than most would expect. As the high end enthusiast camera and pro camera become more and more
the same camera lenses will be more of the distiction. The electronics get better and better while being very affordable there is more of a budget for stellar lenses.
There is also a perception among photographers that cameras are short term investments while "glass" you keep for years and years.
However I think that another segment of the market are people with high-pixel-count 135-format SLRs that may have been considering MFD or have already ditched MFD and
want to make the very most of their cameras.
I think this is particularly relevant as it is a very different approach to where Hasselblad is going.
Hasselblad is making new lenses that are lighter, but sacraficing distortion and vignetting to then correct for this in post.
Carl Zeiss on the other hand is taking advantage of the lightness of for example the D800 letting them still have a reasonable overall camera/lens weight despite making large lens designs.
Their large lens designs let them reach new heights in lens quality.
This announcement by Carl Zeiss is probably the smartest move in the high MP count high quality pro camera areana of Photokina.
Zeiss that used to be the lead player in MF lenses has moved on and seems to be making a lot of right choices.
Their motion picture primes are selling very very well.
The Carl Zeiss group is doing very well indeed.
From 2009 to 2011 Carl Zeiss doubled it's revenues that are now 4.24 billion Euros.