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Mercedes-Benz goes on the electric offensive

Tom Geggus | 15 Dec 2020

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Tom Geggus

Journalist

As a journalist for Autovista Group's Daily Brief, Tom covers a wide variety of stories from across the automotive industry. From sales figures to the development of technology, he wants to know what is driving the industry.

Mercedes-Benz has announced where its upcoming battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) will be produced, as it goes on an electric offensive. Built in its factories in Germany, the US, and China, these new BEVs will be assembled alongside vehicles powered by internal combustion engines (ICE).

Mercedes-Benz revealed a total of eight EQ BEVs will be in production across seven of its locations by 2022. Spanning three continents, this production map will be essential for the carmaker to achieve its goal of electrically-chargeable vehicles (EVs) making up half of its sales by 2030. The electrification of the manufacturer’s entire product range is a key component of the ‘Ambition 2039’ strategy and a prerequisite on the way to CO2 neutrality.

‘With its ‘Electric First’ strategy, Mercedes-Benz is consistently on the path to CO2 neutrality and is investing heavily in transformation,’ said Markus Schäfer, member of the board of management responsible for Daimler Group Research and COO Mercedes-Benz cars. ‘Our vehicle portfolio becomes electric and thus also our global production network with vehicle and battery factories. We intend to lead in the field of e-mobility and focus in particular on battery technology. We are taking a comprehensive approach, ranging from research and development to production, and also including strategic cooperation.’

Global production

The first Mercedes-Benz electric luxury sedan, the EQS, will launch from Factory 56 in Sindelfingen in the first half of 2021. The electric EQA C-SUV will also be made at the Beijing plant in China next year, after initially entering production at the Rastatt plant in Germany this year. It is a similar story for the EQE, which will be built in the Bremen site in Germany and Beijing in China from next year. Meanwhile, the EQB compact will be built at the Kecskemét plant in Hungary in 2021. The EQS und EQE SUVs will be manufactured in Alabama, US, starting from 2022. The EQC business sedan is already built in Bremen and Beijing.

Battery systems will also be produced and assembled in Germany, Poland, Beijing and Alabama. ‘The local production of batteries is an essential success factor in our electric offensive,’ said Jörg Burzer, member of the board of management for production and supply chain. He explained that the carmaker already produces batteries in Kamenz, Bangkok and Beijing, with a network that is well-positioned for the EQ offensive. ‘The ramp-up of our battery plants in Hedelfingen and Jawor is imminent and our colleagues in Brühl and Tuscaloosa are already preparing to start production in 2022.’

‘The Mercedes-Benz production network is global, digital and flexible, and ready for the upcoming electric offensive – thanks, of course, to our highly qualified and motivated employees worldwide. We are now beginning a real Mercedes-EQ fireworks display,’ said Burzer.

‘Six electric product launches by 2022 underscore the strength and competence of our Mercedes-Benz production sites worldwide. The production network will have a total of six Mercedes-EQ car locations. Local production of highly efficient battery systems plays a central role in the Mercedes-Benz strategy – coupled with a comprehensive sustainability concept that spans the entire life cycle of the battery all the way to recycling,’ he concluded.

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