Entry level FF? No need for lens updates. They're still selling kits with the kit lens from the last entry-level FF body (i.e. film) - the 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS is the most popular 7D kit on Amazon - and that's the body price range you're talking about. Unlike on a 7D, the 28-135mm on FF actually makes sense. An entry level FF dSLR will still be relatively expensive, compared to a Rebel G film body, for example. Canon can assume those who can afford one can afford L lenses, and they'll keep producing old designs for those who can't.
Well yeah, but that's only one lens, and it's the only non-L choice still made out of the whole 4 L and 35 non-L
designs in that range they've had over the years. And there's no ultrawide choice like the 20-35 or 22-55 vari-apertures, the cheapest you can get is a â‚¬700/$1000 17-40L.
And think about the newest incarnations of the EF-S 18-55 IS. No, it's not the best lens ever. But it's adequate for the beginner, and you can't go past it for the â‚¬80/$110 it costs. The EF 28-135 is â‚¬430. Canon have proven they can mass-produce adequate lenses for dirt-cheap prices, even increasing costs for FF-compatible lenses and remove a bit of economies of scale, I'd bet they can make an FF-equivalent 24-85 IS for â‚¬200-300 or so.
If this "Joe Consumer" fellow doesn't understand the advantages of better glass, he probably doesn't understand the advantages of full frame either -- he's better off with APS-C.
A good salesman can talk their way into anything. Assume they recycle a 21MP 5D2 sensor into a cheap as all hell body and price it within $50 of a 7D (maybe they get better yields, one-pass etching, bigger wafers, whatever. Plastic-body, no flash, maybe even pentamirror instead of prism? Cut video out completely as a high-body-protector maybe? How they get the savings is irrelevant, as long as they make the savings.).
Talk up the more MP, talk up the better image quality, talk up the lower noise and higher ISO. Especially if they're "upgrading" from a 550D or something, I reckon a lot of the potential customers could be talked into the 'cheap FF'.
(aside: I've heard so many times from various people, talking of 7D vs 550D, "why should I spend 3x the amount if the images look the same?". I've refrained from helping the salesman out by extolling the advantages of the 7D over the 550D, but some customers you can't help, they look at the price, the megapixels, the ISO-range (doesn't matter how good it looks at each iso, they just look at the numbers) and that's it. FPS, pentaprism (you try to explain to a noob why a heavier hunk of glass that isn't in the image pathway is worth extra cash), AF points, don't mean much to those people. They're the target for this cheap-FF, and they're a big hunk of the market.)
And still, the cheap-body-cheap-lens is only the beginning. It's all about brand (and lens-mount) loyalty, they might not spend any more than the kit for the first few years, but if they like the hobby, then they can get more involved and get L-fever. (I have a friend who bought a 1000D kit, she liked it so much she saved for a year and bought a 17-55 f/2.8 to go with it. But if the 1000D kit hadn't been so damn cheap, she never would have even started...)
That makes sense with a long tele. But for the normal length primes, I'd take the 35mm f/2 and 50mm f/1.4 on a full frame over their much more expensive L counterparts on a crop.
35/2 + 5D2 vs 24/1.4L + 7D
50/1.4 + 5D2 vs 35/1.4L + 7D
85/1.8 + 5D2 vs 50/1.2L + 7D
Hmmm, I haven't used too many of these combinations directly, I think with the first i'd go the 24L+7D, but the others probably the 5D2 combos.