Mercedes Benz Lines Up Rs 200 cr Investment, To Launch Over 12 Products In 2024

German luxury carmaker Mercedes-Benz will invest Rs 200 crore in India this year on new products, manufacturing operations and digitisation, to strengthen its position after posting record sales of 17,408 units in 2023, a top company official said on Monday.

Mercedes-Benz India will have more than 12 launches in 2024, including three electric vehicles, out of which half will be in the top end vehicle segment (TEV) and will be priced Rs 1.5 crore onwards.

“This year marks a special year as we celebrate 30 years of Mercedes Benz in India. We are going to invest Rs 200 crore more into our factory in Pune. This takes a total investment of Rs 3,000 crore in India now. So that’s a strong statement of intent,” Mercedes-Benz India Managing Director & CEO Santosh Iyer told PTI in an interview.

These investments will be towards manufacturing operations, new product startups and digitisation of the manufacturing process, he added.

In 2023, Iyer said, the company recorded its best-ever year in its history in India with sales of 17,408 units, a growth of 10 per cent.

Mercedes-Benz India had posted its previous best-ever sales in 2022 when it clocked 15,822 units.

On the outlook for 2024, Iyer said the company is looking for “double-digit” growth despite volatility in both supply and demand sides.

Currently, the company’s order bank stands at 3,000 units.

On the product launch plan, Iyer said, “We are looking at 12-plus new car lines to be launched in ’24 and 50 per cent of them will be in the top end vehicle segment. These will include three new electric vehicles.”

The TEV segment continues to drive aspiration for the brand, Iyer said, adding that three new EVs to be launched in 2024 will build up the company’s EV portfolio.

“EVs now comprise 4 per cent of our total sales and the segment witnessed a trebling of growth in 2023,” he added.

Mercedes-Benz India also launched its new GLS luxury SUV in both petrol and diesel versions priced at Rs 1.32 crore and Rs 1.37 crore, respectively.

Iyer said SUVs account for 55 per cent of the company’s total sales and sedans 45 per cent.

On three new EVs, he said it will be across the entry luxury, core luxury and TEV segments.

When asked about the contribution of EVs to total sales going forward, he said, “We still are looking forward to 20 to 25 per cent of our sales coming from EVs in the next four years’ time.” To get closer to customers in servicing, he said Mercedes-Benz India will create 20 new workshops in 2024 in 10 new cities, including Jammu, Udaipur, Amritsar, Patna, Valsad, Agra, Kannur and Kottayam.

On reports of American electric carmaker Tesla seeking special incentives to set up plant in India, Iyer said, “We are pretty confident that if the government announces any policy it will be a level playing field for the current manufacturers who have invested in India.” He, however, added that new players in the segment are welcome “because that will only intensify adoption of EVs to the market”.

“We have always been supportive of free trade and imports as long as it is a level playing field for the existing investments and for the new ones,” Iyer said.

Shivam is one of those gen X kids who wish the world was different. Shivam enjoys surfing the internet without any motive. He reads a lot and loves working on unique projects.

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